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I am forwarding a message from Clay Redding about geospatial information in MODS (with his permission).

Rebecca S. Guenther                                                       
Senior Networking and Standards Specialist                  
Network Development and MARC Standards Office     
Library of Congress   
101 Independence Ave. SE                                                                                      
Washington, DC 20540-4402                                          
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>>> Clay Redding 7/21/2009 3:59 PM >>>
Hi Jenn,

I could go on at length about geospatial needs in MODS, but Ray and Rebecca have heard that ad nauseum I'm sure.  Here are some things I can recall that I really needed while doing GIS work:

1) a way to basically punt, and use GML or the like instead.  Like a geographic extension that could take any inline XML or a XLink, such as this from GeoNames web services: http://ws.geonames.org/countryInfo?lang=en&country=DE 
 
2) more granularity to express degrees, minutes, seconds, or to optionally use decimal degree notation.  Basically, for the former, to express this in chunks as opposed to requiring a programmer to parse a string to get at the pieces of information.   For the latter this is built in to the notation.

3) I guess this would be for the <projection> element.  We also need to be able to include ways to express datum and ellipsoid references in their own elements as opposed to a string, and an attribute to be able to express these perhaps a URI in an attribute like xlink:href, such as those governed by the EPSG Geodetic Parameter Registry at http://www.epsg-registry.org/ .  e.g., WGS84, which is the most common system for coordinates, is EPSG::7030.  

4) More enumerated values for @authority sources beyond GACs, Countries, etc.  GNIS, Getty TGN and GeoNames for example.  And the ability to express XML representations from these sources as pure XLinks, not only as strings.  One should be able to do this: 

Clay

>>> "Riley, Jenn" <[log in to unmask]> 07/21/09 3:15 PM >>>
Dear MODS/MADS Community,

This is a reminder the MODS/MADS Editorial Committee is looking for use cases for geospatial information in MODS. Please send any use cases you have to the MODS list - we'd like MODS to evolve to handle this type of information in a way that's useful to you.

Thanks,

Jenn Riley
Chair, MODS/MADS Editorial Committee

> -----Original Message-----
> From: Metadata Object Description Schema List [mailto:[log in to unmask]] On
> Behalf Of Riley, Jenn
> Sent: Monday, June 29, 2009 9:19 PM
> To: [log in to unmask] 
> Subject: [MODS] geospatial information in MODS - call for use cases
>
> Dear MODS/MADS community,
>
> In considering changes for future versions of MODS, the MODS/MADS
> Editorial Committee is starting to think about how to better handle
> geospatial information. Detailed geospatial information in the form of
> coordinates, etc. is becoming more and more common and can promote many
> innovative user interactions with resources. Currently MODS has poor
> support for this information.
>
> The committee would like to bring together use cases for supporting
> geospatial access to resources from MODS and/or MADS implementations.
> We are interested both in use cases that you already have in your
> MODS/MADS implementation and that any local geospatial experts you have
> access to can provide, to help us inform how MODS and/or MADS should
> evolve to better handle this information. It should be noted this
> discussion came to the Editorial Committee from the more specific
> geospatial elements (latitude/longitude,
> equinox/epoch) in RDA, although we want to look beyond RDA for guidance
> in this decision.
>
> So far, we have identified the following use cases for geospatial data:
>
> - To allow resources with a geospatial component (interpreted widely)
> to be plotted on an interactive map-based interface
> - Interactively overlaying different maps, including aerial
> photographs, digitized historic maps, and current maps in a GIS
> environment
> - To index coordinate data about the geographic coverage of a resource
> for retrieval purposes
> - To index coordinate data about the geographic origin of a resource
> for retrieval purposes
>
> What others can you provide?
>
> Are there more specific use cases both for geospatial *coverage* (what
> a resource is about or represents) and geospatial *origin* (where a
> resource is from, for example, a soil sample)? This distinction seems
> important but it would be useful to understand what is done differently
> in each case.
>
> There is some question as to whether the appropriate place for this
> information is MODS or MADS - thoughts on this issue? Should MODS/MADS
> be looking to embedding or referencing other standards for this
> information, and, if so, which and where? What is the best balance
> between functionality (and potentially complexity) and ease of
> creation/maintenance/use?
>
> We look forward to hearing discussion on this issue - it's a complex
> but important one that will benefit from community contribution.
>
> Jenn Riley, Chair, MODS/MADS Editorial Committee
>
> ========================
> Jenn Riley
> Metadata Librarian
> Digital Library Program
> Indiana University - Bloomington
> Wells Library W501
> (812) 856-5759
> www.dlib.indiana.edu 
>
> Inquiring Librarian blog: www.inquiringlibrarian.blogspot.com