So last week was an interesting and busy one for me. On Tuesday I was invited to the UK Location Registers & Registries Working Group meeting held at the Environment Agency, Bristol and then presented at the UK Location INSPIRE Data Providers Winter Workshop in London on Thursday. With so much going on here’s my highlights from the two meetings.
UK Location INSPIRE Data Provider Winter Workshop – 9th Feb 2012
Things are happening!! The INSPIRE Data Provider Winter Workshop was, in my opinion, the best meeting to date that the UK Location and AGI have hosted. It was really good to see lots of new faces in the audience, in particular those organisations that are responsible for the Annex III themes.
The Agenda was a really healthy mix of presentations, ranging from the high-level strategic objectives of the UK Location and INSPIRE to technical sessions demonstrating the tools and applications that are available to support implementation, including:
- Data Download Services
- Data Transformation
There were several real high points that I took away from the meeting:
- Implementation Statistics:
- 95% of all identified datasets that fall within the scope of Annex I and II have metadata defined for them
- Most data providers have also established view services
- New and improved discovery and view application is looking good
- Despite the small team involved, Defra and OS are providing a lot of support to data providers to improve the quality of their metadata and view services
- INSPIRE Download Services:
- Ian James (OS) gave a great presentation, providing a sneaky peak into the forthcoming Technical Guidelines for the INSPIRE Download Services
- There have been three types of download services initially proposed (these will be extended once the Annex III themes have been finalised):
- Option 1: Atom Feeds for pre-defined datasets
- Option 2: WFS serving pre-defined datasets
- Option 3: WFS serving features (preferred)
Although I didn’t expect that this would be where the Technical Guidelines are heading, I’m actually impressed. And a little relieved – we only need to update our marketing materials not our software as we already support all three of these options. Interestingly, the preferred option, Option 3, is the easiest of the three download services to implement using GO Publisher.
Keep an eye out on the forthcoming Labs section on our re-vamped website later next month for example videos demonstrating how to configure GO Publisher for setting up Download Services.
- Transforming data into the INSPIRE Data Specifications:
It was good to see similarities in the key messages from both presentations that demonstrated how to transform data into the INSPIRE Data Specifications, specifically:
- The data specifications are not as demanding as organisations initially expected
- Time taken to transform data is significantly lower than expected (It took a team of people from Natural England 1 day to transform the Local Nature Reserves dataset into the Annex I Protected Sites theme)
- ransformation and data publication requires input from multiple stakeholders within an organisation
You can see the presentation that I gave describing Snowflake’s approach to data transformation and publication using the Environment Agency Detailed River Network dataset on our SlideShare at:
- Publishing Data into the INSPIRE Data Specifications
- Transforming EA Detailed River Network in to INSPIRE Annex I Hydrography
UK Location Registers & Registries Working Group – 7th February
After an invitation from Alex Coley, Chair of UK Location Architecture & Interoperability Board I attended the kick off meeting for the UK Location Registers & Registries Working Group. It was a really lively kick off meeting with lots of discussion about the scope of the working group and what UK Location wants to achieve in relation to both INSPIRE and Linked Open Data. Some of the key initial outcomes of the meeting were that the Registers & Registries Working Group will focus on two streams of work:
Firstly – Registers to support the publication of common re-usable resources:
- Dictionaries of terms (i.e. codelists, vocabularies etc.)
- Coordinate Reference Systems
- Portrayal (styled layer descriptions, symbology)
- Application Schemas (UML/XSD)
These are registers required to underpin INSPIRE and must be established by Member States.
And secondly – Registers that provide a wider framework for managing, discovering and re-using reference objects:
- URI Sets
- Individual spatial object URIs
Again it is exciting to see the UK take the lead in the development of such services as they shall provide the foundation for both INSPIRE and Linked Data.