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Employing Metadata to Identify Published Resources in Precision Agriculture on the Internet: a Proposal
Published by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers, St. Joseph, Michigan www.asabe.org
Citation: Paper number 013031, 2001 ASAE Annual Meeting. (doi: 10.13031/2013.7413) @2001
Authors: Donna Schenck-Hamlin, Wenyan Zhan
Keywords: Precision Agriculture, Metadata, Knowledge discovery, Internet Search, Dublin Core, DC, Content Standard for Digital Geospatial Metadata, CDSGM, Digital Publishing
While the goals of Precision Agriculture are well articulated, there are many barriers
to identifying published knowledge in this field of inquiry. Although availability of international
databases and Internet publishing make Precision Agriculture research more accessible, a lack
of standardized metadata for multiple information resource types still stymies researchers.
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We would like to address the application of ASAE-supported metadata and standardized
keyword vocabulary, as a means of identifying all Precision Agriculture knowledge resources,
be they bibliographic, image, or structured databases. Dublin Core (DC) metadata and Content
Standard for Digital Geospatial Metadata (CSDGM) both offer standards for describing
knowledge resources. DC is a more general, extensible set of descriptive elements that can be
applied to bibliographic or other resources. CSDGM is specific to digital geospatial data sets.
Whenever new Precision Agriculture information is published for the Internet, these or other
metadata sets should be embedded within the resource, in order to enable its discovery by
As the Internet grows, it is becoming increasingly difficult to limit searches to a context that is
meaningful to a given user group or discipline. A virtual segment of the Internet can be
extracted if a discipline agrees to the use of unambiguous descriptors and unique identifiers
within their metadata. We recommend that vocabulary pertinent to Precision Agriculture be
identified from ASAE glossaries and organized into a three-tier system of descriptors and
keywords recommended for use as Precision Agriculture metadata content. A template from
ASAE would make publications, structured data and image sets “Internet-ready” with relatively
little effort on the part of authors or editors.