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Meetings

Coastal and Marine Geology Program's 2003 Knowledge Bank Workshop: Initiating MontereyBayScience.org


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Trent Faust
Trent Faust describes the iterative process of building an information architecture. Photograph by Heather Henkel.

From June 16 to 19, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)'s Coastal and Marine Geology Program (CMGP) held its third Knowledge Bank Workshop at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution's Quissett Campus in Woods Hole, MA. The purpose of this workshop was to map out a strategy and launch a National Knowledge Bank Project prototype.

Workshop leaders Fran Lightsom (Woods Hole), Debbie Hutchinson (Woods Hole), Rob Wertz (St. Petersburg, FL), Trent Faust (St. Petersburg), Fausto Marincioni (Woods Hole), and Dennis Krohn (St. Petersburg) welcomed 29 participants from headquarters in Reston, VA, and field centers in Menlo Park, CA, St. Petersburg, FL, and Woods Hole, MA. The workshop benefited from the insight and advice of Dawn Lavoie, CMGP Associate Program Coordinator.

Adding perspectives from outside CMGP were representatives from the Director's Office (David Govoni), the Geography Discipline (Roger Barlow), and private industry (Sam Hunting, of eTopicality, Inc.).

Trent Faust led a half-day seminar on user-centered information-architecture design, which addressed several of the issues facing the Knowledge Bank. This seminar was an abbreviated version of a full-day seminar presented by Adaptive Path, a consulting firm that specializes in assisting companies in the development of information architectures which communicate effectively to their users. Incorporating principles of user-centered design and usability testing, this information-architecture process will help guide the construction and evolution of current and future online Knowledge Bank products.

Rob Wertz and David Govoni classify tasks as a first step in an exercise in information-architecture design.Dennis Krohn, Carolyn Degnan, Greg Miller, and Fran Lightsom finish their exercise in the information-architecture-design process.
Above left: Rob Wertz (left) and David Govoni classify tasks as a first step in an exercise in information-architecture design. Photograph by Renee Koenig.

Above right: (Left to right) Dennis Krohn, Carolyn Degnan, Greg Miller, and Fran Lightsom finish their exercise in the information-architecture-design process. Photograph by Renee Koenig.

Below left: Debbie Hutchinson works with her laptop—literally. Photograph by Renee Koenig.

Below center: (Left to right) VeeAnn Atnipp Cross (standing), Damon Dunson, Rebecca Riall, Guthrie Linck, and Chuck Denham work on the information-architecture-design exercise. Photograph by Renee Koenig.

Below right: Sam Hunting (left) and Valerie Paskevich group content in the second exercise in the information-architecture-design seminar. Photograph by Renee Koenig.
Debbie Hutchinson works with her laptop—literally.VeeAnn Atnipp Cross (standing), Damon Dunson, Rebecca Riall, Guthrie Linck, and Chuck Denham work on the information-architecture-design exercise.Sam Hunting and Valerie Paskevich group content in the second exercise in the information-architecture-design seminar.

The workshop series was begun in response to the National Research Council (NRC)'s Grand Challenge 2: to develop a national knowledge bank—a comprehensive inventory of data held by various groups and agencies—on the geologic framework of the U.S. coastal and marine regions. The first workshop was a brainstorming session to establish a project vision and goals. The second workshop undertook the task of planning a response to the NRC's challenge. The 2003 workshop affirmed the commitment to develop a knowledge bank by initiating a pilot Web site for the Monterey Bay area named MontereyBayScience.org.

Monterey Bay was chosen as the pilot site because it is a coastal area that has national visibility, a large holding of previously collected USGS data, and an already-established coalition of partners. Rex Sanders (Menlo Park) noted, "We have an opportunity to provide leadership, expertise, and limited resources, to lead a diverse scientific community to greater accomplishment."

MontereyBayScience.org will have three primary uses:

  • Data access—users can create more scientific knowledge based on existing data

  • Decisionmaking—users can make better decisions using the best available science

  • Education—users can learn more about Monterey Bay and the science behind the data

MontereyBayScience.org will begin building with existing information-management services. Here are some that were noted at the meeting:

Marine Realms Information Bank creators Rebecca Riall and Fausto Marincioni with Knowledge Bank summer intern Mital Shah.
(Left to right) Marine Realms Information Bank (MRIB) creators Rebecca Riall and Fausto Marincioni with Knowledge Bank summer intern Mital Shah. Photograph by Renee Koenig.

MontereyBayScience.org will be much more than just a Web site; it will support maps, fact sheets, pamphlets, posters, services, presentations, and symposiums and will reuse existing materials to create new products.

MontereyBayScience.org will represent much more than just the CMGP; it will be a cooperative effort. The workshop identified more than 30 potential partners outside the USGS and 6 potential partners inside the USGS. All partners will benefit by combining their strengths and limited resources to create products and services no single institution could afford.

For more information about MontereyBayScience.org, contact:

Rex Sanders, 650-329-5196, rsanders@usgs.gov

Dennis Krohn, 727-803-8747 x3062, dkrohn@usgs.gov


Related Sound Waves Stories
usSEABED Continues to Expand Coverage and Usage for Mapping Seabed Characteristics
August 2002
CMGP National Knowledge Bank's 2nd Annual Workshop
June 2002
Making USGS Information Effective in the Electronic Age
March 2001

Related Web Sites
Coastal and Marine Knowledge Bank Project
U.S. Geological Survey (USGS)
eTopicality, Inc.
consulting firm
Adaptive Path
consulting firm

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in this issue: Fieldwork cover story:
Coastal Circulation Experiment

Southwest Central Florida Flood

Outreach Science Teachers and Curriculum Development

Sea Education Association

School Children Learn About Sediment

WETMAAP Workshops for Teachers

Meetings American Water Works Association

Diversity Days

Continental Shelf Limits

Tampa Bay Wetland Restoration Research

German-American Frontiers of Science

Coastal and Marine Geology Program Knowledge Bank

Awards USGS Scientist Receives Award from Southern University

Staff & Center News Visitor from National Research Council

Publications August Publications List


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