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Software Helps Researchers Find Meaning in Massive Scientific Data Sets

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Researchers at Indiana University's Data to Insight Center have released XMC Cat, software that makes sorting the massive amounts of data produced by advanced scientific instruments and supercomputers more manageable. XMC Cat is a catalog of metadata that can help scientists more quickly locate the data most useful to their research.

Finding the right data can be like looking for a scientific needle in a massive digital haystack, says IU professor Beth Plale. "XMC Cat breaks that stack into manageable, well-organized sections, making it much easier for scientists to sort through and find what they need," Plale says.

XMC Cat also can adapt to the languages used by various scientific communities. "XMC Cat is architected to adapt to these various schemas—so, unlike similar tools, it adapts to the scientific community, rather than requiring the community to adapt to the software," says IU's Scott Jensen, the program's lead developer.

In addition, XMC Cat includes a point-and-click query interface that adapts to concepts contained in the user community schema as well as the ability to share query definitions.

View a video of IU research scientist Scott Jensen describing XMC Cat.

From Indiana University
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