[ckan4rdm] CKAN as research data repository

Florian May florian.wendelin.mayer at gmail.com
Thu Oct 24 03:33:25 UTC 2013

Hi everyone,

we're setting up CKAN for RDM for a Marine Research and Monitoring group
within a state government department in Western Australia. We've got
additional constraints as we deal with sensitive data about threatened
species and communities. We'll be looking at maintaining proper ISO 13139 /
ANZLIC MCP metadata on a CKAN-harvested GeoNetwork catalog for spatially
referenced datasets, but first need to get our scientists' heads around the
paradigm change from spreadsheets to CKAN.

The selling points of CKAN were the user community, the intuitive GUI, the
search performance, and the filestore/datastore plus API. With a more
technical end user audience we could have used a GeoNetwork / GeoServer /
Thredds stack, but our main data manipulation paradigm is still the trusty
spreadsheet, an internal Wiki for knowledge management and R / Python /
Latex for report automation.

Our servers run Ubuntu 12.04 LTS VMs with a few home-made application
hosting conventions beyond CKAN's default settings / ports / directories.
To take some of the headache out of the manual installation and
customization steps, we've created a fabric script [0] to automate the
setup (incl file store, data store and spatial preview). I've also added
the setup of initial orgs, groups and users (datasets and resources to
follow) using the API [1].
Feel free to take our installer for a spin, and I'd highly value your
opinion and feedback!

[0] Code repository https://bitbucket.org/dpaw/yes_you_ckan/overview
[1] Installation instructions


Florian Mayer
Research Scientist Ecoinformatics
Marine Science Program, Dept Parks & Wildlife WA

On Wed, Oct 23, 2013 at 10:19 PM, Sebastian Rahtz <sebastian.rahtz at gmail.com
> wrote:

> We're trying some experiments within IT Services at Oxford, using CKAN as
> a vehicle for rapid prototyping. Whether we'll implement
> it as a service in any way alongside our existing repository and metadata
> systems is a question for 2014.
> Keyword there is "rapid". Took an hour or two to get running on a clean
> VM, and does what it says on the tin - which
> is an attractive attitude :-} Took longer to understand the Datastore than
> the rest of it, but thats looking nice.
> Trying to see how I can put up an HTML page for my dataset which uses
> resources within it
> (ie images) and not seeing how to refer to resource B from resource A, but
> I hope thats solvable.
> I'd like to make it possible to put a front-end on a dataset using such a
> technique, but maybe
> I am fighting the paradigm.
> --
> Sebastian Rahtz
> Director (Research) of Academic IT
> University of Oxford IT Services
> 13 Banbury Road, Oxford OX2 6NN. Phone +44 1865 283431
> _______________________________________________
> ckan4rdm mailing list
> ckan4rdm at lists.okfn.org
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