All scientific disciplines and communities understand that documenting their data makes it trustworthy and helps others use it with confidence. Many communities develop conventions for their documentation that enable sharing within the community, but can make it more difficult to share outside the community. Sometimes these dialects are called "standards" but, in the end, they are all dialects of the same documentation language.

I have on-going projects that cross the boundaries of discipline and system specific metadata dialects. These projects involve empirically characterizing use patterns within a dialect in order to identify useful concepts, evaluating completeness of metadata in many dialects, and translating between dialects.

Metadata in multiple dialects

This Figure shows some of the dialects I work with from NASA and the Climate and Meteorology Community, as well as U.S., Open Geospatial Consortium, and W3C Standards. Much of my work is aimed at connecting these dialects to the ISO International Standards developed by ISO Technical Committee 211 (TC211).