IGSN Technical Documentation of the International Geo Sample Number

2015-09-09 General Assembly

General Assembly 2015 9:00am EDT, GoToMeeting


  • Opening and Welcome
  • Appointment of the meeting chairperson
  • Appointment of the minute taker
  • Establishment of the quorum
  • Approval of the agenda
  • Report by the members of the executive board and discussion
  • New applications for IGSN - Curtin University
  • Discussion Topics
  • Miscellaneous


Jens Klump*, Damian Ulbricht, Kirsten Elger*, Doris Maicher*, Irina Bastrakova*, Megan Carter, Leslie Hsu, Brent McInnes, Anthony Koppers*, Bernhard Peucker-Ehrenbrink*, Kerstin Lehnert*, Hans-Joachim Wallrabe-Adams*

* voting members


  • Kerstin Lehnert nominates Jens as the meeting chairperson and Jens Klump accepts.
  • Kerstin Lehnert nominates Leslie as the minute taker and Leslie accepts.
  • The quorum is established with 7 voting members (starred above).
  • Jens asks for approval of the agenda from all members. Kerstin suggests the AGU Activities 2015 topic. The agenda was approved.
  • Report by executive board
    • There was a recent visit of Jens Klump and Lesley Wyborn to Lamont to work on IGSN members in June/July 2015.
    • The GFZ Handle Service used to be quite slow. The Smithsonian Institution was registering ~300,000+ samples by web services and it was very slow. Damian Ulbricht, Lulin Song, and DataCite worked together to improve the speed of the service - the speed is much improved now.
    • Geoscience Australia has registered about 2 million samples - the speed was very adequate. (after the fix)
    • Jens and others worked on the documentation, it needs a lot of work, it is in progress, there are many actions to complete. Information is spread over 4 different sites. Jens is working to consolidate all of the information onto GitHub, there will be an IGSN organization in GitHub. He is researching automatic ways to transfer the content.
    • Anthony Koppers: Is there a clear link from igsn.org to the GitHub page? JK: we will do that, the GitHub page is currently experimental. igsn.org will remain, but the wiki, trac ticketing system, and others will be consolidated.
    • Kerstin: With the expanding use of the IGSN we are increasing complexity of the use cases, we need to establish more guidelines. We should also discuss recent issues with IGSN syntax as an organization to make sure we are not diverging too much from what tools for IGSN are developed for. IGSNs are important for reproducibility, getting to metadata, and getting to the physical sample - IGSNs in publications should comply with certain rules.
    • Jens: we have the metadata working workshop where this can be discussed.
    • There will be a workshop next week, triggered by discussion in the iSamples Research Coordination Network (U.S. EarthCube project). There is a metadata working group from iSamples. One goal especially is to talk with the biological samples community. It is a working meeting to get metadata standards groups discussion on paper. There was a preliminary webinar: http://earthcube.org/workspace/isamples/webinars
    • Bernhard: will there be anyone representing the hydrologic community? Like CUAHSI? KL: yes, Gary Berg-Cross will be there.
    • Anthony K: are you planning to make this into a Standard with versions, etc.? KL: It is a good idea to pursue that path, it may be a long path. JK: I would like to define the metadata kernel but also discuss community practice extensions to the kernel at the workshop.
  • Vote on the application by Curtin University. Jens asks Brent to say some words about the application.
    • The Curtin University group does geochronology, Zircon-Uranium-Lead dating, etc., and has partners at other universities and CSIRO. Aware of IGSN through a recent project, collecting data straight off an analytic instrument. The IGSN allows managing and very quick publishing of data after sample analysis. There are a lot of analyses, averaging ~ 3 publications per week (!), but not all analyses make it into publications, so this is a good way to make the information publicly available. We have connections to the instrument manufacturers, there is possibility to work with these manufacturers to have IGSN in their software.
    • Bernhard asks how security is handled. Brent: this is something we need to be aware of, and this question is best handled by IT specialists working with us.
    • Anthony K: We work with Ar-Ar geochronology. Both Anthony and Brent will be presenting work at AGU 2015 about their workflows and systems. Publishing data on the web is a very important issue. Brent: There are some different cultures within government vs. academia in publishing data and metadata, but we hope to increase the culture of sharing data and metadata.
    • Kerstin: there is also the issue of labs who do analytical work for others, are not the owners of the original sample, but want to register and track the sample in their lab. It would be good to get some recommendations of how labs should handle this (the owner vs. the lab registering the IGSNs). Brent: we would like to build in compliance with IGSN to the pricing structure (government vs. commercial rate - better price if more compliant). Anthony: Good idea, but there are also international lab participants who have not heard of IGSN.
      • Jens made the motion to accept the application. Kerstin seconded the acception. There were no objections. Curtin University was accepted into the IGSN e.V.
      • Curtin University more information: http://jdlc.edu.au/ (click video on the home page).
  • Discussion
    • Roles: Megan: There are different roles for archives and people in the IGSN metadata profile, we want this to be more standardized in the metadata profile, it is used in different ways now. “Archive” can be an institution, lab, person, so we should discuss the different roles (Official physical sample repository vs. collector). KL: this should also be on the agenda for the working meeting next week. Archive vocabulary standardization is also something that could be discussed.
    • AGU 2015: what activities would we like to do in December that are most useful? We will rent a room, (most likely the Sunday before AGU). We can also discuss this after the upcoming metadata workshop. The Executive Board can draft a plan for the AGU meeting in San Francisco next week when they meet in Los Angeles.
  • Misc
    • Also discuss the IGSN e.V. manager role of Leslie Hsu in the future - continuation or replacement. Leslie will discuss this soon with the Executive Committee - in the next couple weeks as she starts her next position.
  • There were no more items, so Jens closed the meeting.