October 5-9, 2014


P5.5 AstroData Descriptors: A Generic Metadata Interface

Kenneth Anderson (AURA/Gemini Observatory)

K. Labrie, M. Simpson, J. Turner - (AURA/Gemini Observatory)

Gemini Observatory has developed a dataset abstraction framework called AstroData. The framework is generic in that it can be used to define an abstraction for any telescope's observational and calibration data. As part of this framework, a system of what are called dataset "descriptors" is implemented to provide a generic and completely consistent interface to the metadata of any dataset accommodated by an AstroData package. These descriptors are explicitly defined for a particular type of dataset. AstroData further defines a dataset typing system, which is also "built-in". Because metadata can vary across observatories and instruments, AstroData type determination builds the metadata descriptors interface "on-the-fly" once the dataset types have been asserted. Descriptors are implemented as logically named methods on an instance of AstroData and as such may not only return metadata directly, but also may be defined to perform calculations and return metadata derivatives. Descriptors always return a DescriptorValue object, a container object with all the pertinent metadata requested, regardless of its initial form or primitive data type.

Mode of presentation: poster

Applicable ADASS XXIV theme category: Meta-data management