Contaminated Sediments Database for the Gulf of Maine, OFR 02-403
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Database Content Overview
This 'Content Overview' page summarizes material that is presented in the Database Construction section of this publication. Please read the full text for details.
The Contaminated Sediments Database is a matrix (spreadsheet format) having samples in one dimension and properties, or parameters, in the other. In the database, each sample is assigned a row and the columns contain data about the location, parameters analyzed, methods, and measurements for each sample. The structure and content of the database are defined by the Data Dictionary, which defines what types of data are entered into each parameter field for each of six separate data tables. Each sample in the database is linked across the tables by a unique identification number (Sample ID) that is assigned when the data are entered and by a citation to the original source. The sample matrix format is flexible; it allows for addition of both samples and parameters.
References include documents that were reviewed for data content, those which are sources of compiled data, those which are cited in the text of this document, and documents on related topics that were not reviewed for data content. All of these are presented in bibliographies discussed in the methods section. Citations for data that is compiled in the Contaminated Sediments Database for the Gulf of Maine are given for every sample in each data table under the short name for the "Source of Information or Reference " and are shown with the full bibliographic citation for that reference in the Gulf of Maine Database Bibliography (Excel 4.0).
Information tables about data sources and entry
The data dictionary and data tables are further supported by a working dictionary and glossary (download below), and by reference information. All of the data tables allow for generous use of qualifiers and comments about the data and the sample. The working dictionary contains abbreviations, types of methods or devices used, and new parameters. Source-Reference lists (download below) provide full bibliographic citations for the Source of Data and commentary about the content and physical location of each document. The paper-trail information that is in the station table, reference tables, and data tables is provided to aid the user in evaluating the data and in locating the original sources.
FGDC compliant Metadata:
Metadata or "data about data" describe the content, quality, condition, and other characteristics of data. Metadata describing the data in the Data tables for the Gulf of Maine contaminated sediments database are presented as frequently anticipated questions and in FGDC outline format