What can’t GCIs do?

Beginning reading with no prior awareness of cyberinfrastructures, Yang et al.’s article on Geospatial Cyberinfrastructures was pretty overwhelming. Yang et al. do such an incredible job of condensing huge amounts of information in a way that is fairly easy to follow (despite the multitude of acronyms) that admittedly, I don’t even know where to start in tackling it. What I found most interesting was the outline of the development of the semantic web and the data life cycle.

Throughout all readings in this course so far there has been mention of semantic differences in data, and the need to “facilitate the automatic identification, utilization, and integration of datasets into operational systems,” (272). With GCIs encompassing data from a huge array of different sources and different users (the Virtual Organisations are also really neat), the development of Web 3.0 is incredibly pressing in order to make sense of all this data and ensure interoperability.

I also really liked the section on Supporting the life cycle from data to knowledge. It is important to note that data is not information is not knowledge—it must be processed and synthesised in order to achieve a greater understanding of what the data represents.

Readings like Yang et al. really send home the point that this field is overarching and is growing at an incredible rate, and it’s really exciting to watch.

-sidewalk ballet


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