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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service

Research Project: CONSERVATION EFFECTS ASSESSMENT PROJECT (CEAP) DATABASE DEVELOPMENT AND DEPLOYMENT
2010 Annual Report


1a.Objectives (from AD-416)
1) Provide support to the existing CEAP database effort in acquiring and vetting watershed data to gain an understanding of the extent and complexity of the conservation-research data that exists at a variety of research locations. Possible locations may include CEAP watersheds (Cropland & Grazing Lands), REAP, and GRACEnet locations. 2) Provide website design and development support with the primary effort in acquiring research data, GIS data, and research metadata from watershed data producers; and, populating web pages with acquired content. 3) Provide additional support the ArcGIS Server-based CEAP data delivery system through system development and system configuration skills.

4) Examine additional data visualization techniques and delivery opportunities with a focus on Google Earth using web-based data management techniques and programming skills.

5) Provide support to the development of web-casts and other informative sessions to assist data producers in moving their data into the database system.


1b.Approach (from AD-416)
This project facilitates on-going development and enhanced functionality for web-based research information management systems, such as, the STEWARDS (Sustaining the Earth’s Watersheds, Agricultural Research Data System) database. The STEWARDS database has been developed to enable users to search, visualize, and download agricultural research data from CEAP watersheds. Personnel assigned to this project will work with NSTL information management staff and CEAP, REAP, and GRACEnet scientists at the ARS research watersheds to populate databases with agricultural research data in a timely manner, provide programmatic support to the development of web-based data delivery systems, and develop educational tools for research personnel. In addition, programming and data visualization techniques will be developed for retrieval, display, and downloading of data by Agency and non-Agency scientists to help quantify the short- and long-term benefits of conservation practices throughout the nation.


3.Progress Report

This agreement supports the objectives of the parent project and focuses on the development of interfaces that increase the value of the Sustaining the Earth’s Watersheds – Agricultural Research Data System (STEWARDS) database for water quality. The STEWARDS database is a Geographic Information System (GIS)-based information delivery system that encompasses all of the Agricultural Research Service (ARS) cropland watersheds into a single database. User interfaces have been constructed and evaluated that allow for more rapid screening of the quality of the data being entered from each watershed, providing tools that assess the integrity of the data as it is extracted from the database for use in models, and developing new JavaScript interfaces to allow for more user friendly access to the database. These efforts have helped to extend the database to other components in the natural resource system and strengthen the overall data base structure to include a larger variety of natural resource data. Implementation of the screening tools and data integrity algorithms have helped users and data contributors to more easily work with their data during the data inclusion process. Weekly discussions are held about the progress of these approaches and how they can be easily implemented in the database.


Last Modified: 7/12/2014
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