Two approaches to getting data into the database are used with the Geochron database. The
preferred method is to use data reduction programs to directly interact with the database.
Such programs typically contain all of the needed data that is important to understanding the
sample dates and derived age interpretations. These programs provide a simple user interface
for uploading data that interacts with the database using a set of web services. These
interfaces also provide utilities for obtaining or verifying the unique sample identifier
IGSN. Data are stored in XML format, and these files can be downloaded and ingested directly
back into the reduction program. The other method is to use spreadsheets or text files that
can be read into the database. These do not typically contain all of the important data or
metadata, but allow for upload by users not wanting to use the data reduction programs provided
here or for methods where no general data reduction program is available.
Data reporting and the approach employed above were the subject of numerous EarthChem and
EARTHTIME sponsored workshops. Those workshop reports can be found at: