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KNB Data Management Tools Workshop

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Spring 2005

- Samantha Romanello, LTER Network Office (SEEK)

The First KNB Data Management Tools Workshop was held September 28-30, 2004 at the National Center for Ecological Analysis and Synthesis (NCEAS), UCSB, Santa Barbara, CA. Interest was so strong that a second workshop was scheduled to reach a larger number of individuals in the data management community - particularly LTER information managers.

The Second Knowledge Network for Biocomplexity (KNB) Data Management Tools Workshop was held February 2-4, 2005 at the new Informatics Training and Software Usability Testing Laboratory. This new, state-of-the-art facility located at the UNM CERIA building is equipped with 21 Dell Optiplex GX280 workstations with dual monitors and an advanced audio-visual system for instruction. The three day intensive workshop was designed to give data managers additional knowledge, skills and tools for managing ecological data at field and research stations across the country. The format included presentations and hands-on, computer-based experiences. Participants were able to upload data and metadata using the newest version of the Morpho metadata software, create and edit Ecological Metadata Language (EML) using XMLSpy, create a login and registration with KNB which allowed users to register their own data and provided access to data stored within Metacat, and create and run a Metacat Harvest and explore the new scientific workflow software Kepler. 

LTER was well represented at the workshop by both presenters and participants. Many of the sessions were led by individuals from the LTER Network Office. Mark Servilla (LNO), NIS Lead Scientist, provided a presentation on the LTER EML Best Practices and a hands-on sessions using basic EML via XMLSpy. Duane Costa (LNO), NIS programmer/Analyst, presented on EML Harvesting and conducted a hands-on session with the new Metacat Harvesting software as seen in the Fall 2004 issue of DataBits. Deana Pennington (SEEK), Research Assistant Professor on the SEEK project presented on Ecoinformatics and Taking metadata (EML) to the next level and a provided a hands-on demonstration session with Kepler: A System for Scientific Workflow also seen in the Fall 2004 issue of DataBits. Samantha Romanello (SEEK), Mellon Post Doctoral Fellow, presented on and provided a hands-on session with the newest version of the Morpho metadata management software. Additionally Laura Downey (SEEK), Senior Usability Engineer on the SEEK project, facilitated group discussion on the usability issues surrounding Morpho.

LTER information managers participants included:

  • John Anderson (JRN)
  • Steve Bauer (CDR)
  • Nicole Czarnomski (AND)
  • Hap Garritt (PIE)
  • James Laundre (ARC)
  • Eda MelĂ©ndez (LUQ)
  • Theresa Valentine (AND)
  • Jonathan Walsh (BES)

Other participants included data managers from academic institutions such as Cornell, University of Kansas and University of Hawaii as well as international representation from the Taiwan Forestry Institute, the National Taiwan University and the Departamento de Technologia da Informacao of Brazil.

Both workshops were sponsored by NCEAS, LNO and SEEK.  The KNB website ( contains a complete workshop description, agenda and slides.