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The FGDC is continuing to advance GDA 2018 and OMB A-16 objective. This includes objectives to further advance geospatial data technology, and services of GeoPlatform.gov. A large part of this is via supporting improvements to metadata tools. Also, moving towards ISO from FGDC CSDGM. USGS historically has published aligned to CSDGM, a 1990s standard, via various toolsets. CSDGM is being phased out in favor of efforts aligned to ISO and DCAT. ISO will enable better URI implementation, better support for newer data types (streaming, services, semantic, enable ML/AI), and align to other agency efforts.

As part of this migration, the USGS FSP has invested in a shared set of metadata tools. Metadata tools used for editing, schemas, viewers, code lists, translations, and documentation. This is the mdToolkit. This task focuses on expanding the capabilities of the mdTranslator tool to support complete CSDGM to ISO translation among other tasks. The primary goal is to optimize the translator to support translations to the FGDC endorsed ISO versions and the ISO versions supported for ingest into Data.gov’s Catalog. The challenge will be to balance complexity vs. utility in the translation for reader and writers. Also, limiting data loss while focusing on metadata complexities. This will allow for lowering the technical expertise barriers and improving metadata completeness of archival quality metadata over operations. 

Problem and Solution

The FGDC required the establishment of a 1.0 release. This release was needed to enable the USGS and DOI Bureaus in efforts to migrate from CSDGM to ISO and set the stage towards supporting the broader community. This can establish the toolkit as a broader asset and possibly a geoplatform core toolset and continuously improve as part of on-going collaboration and operations efforts. Xentity provided application and service development and enhancements. Also, they provide operations and maintenance for the mdTranslator.

Outcome and Benefit

Xentity managed to take the ADIWG mdTranslator effort and release a 1.0 as a basis over a 9 month period. The translator enhanced the internal mdJSON format, enhanced the msCodes, and supported translations to ISO translation. Also, Xentity’s operations and maintenance efforts helped prepare for migrating the app to live.