The LiPD vision

Paleoclimate investigators have made a major effort over the past decade to make their data available to the broader community, largely through online archiving systems like the World Data Center for Paleoclimatology and Pangaea. However, there is no agreed-upon data standard for how to store and exchange such data.  As the number of records in these archives has grown, making connections manually has thus become more and more challenging, hampering integrative efforts at the very time they should be flourishing. Paleoclimatologists thus need a common tongue to describe their datasets to each other and to machines.

LiPD (Linked Paleo Data) proposes such a common tongue. It is a universally-readable data container that organizes data and metadata in a uniform way, such that they may be web-searchable, and such that a variety of code functionalities may be built and apply instantly to any dataset that observes that standard.

The LiPD implementation

LiPD is centered on JSON-LD, a JSON-based format compliant with the Linked Data paradigm. JavaScript Object Notation (JSON) is an extremely lightweight and flexible way to encode information, and has become the leading format for data exchange on the Web. Linked Data are datasets that observe certain rules to be able to be automatically linked through the Web of Data.

For more details, see this article and this presentation by NickMckay at the PAGES OSM. 

LiPD in LinkedEarth

LipD is a convenient way to store and exchange paleoclimate format, and is an important building block of the LinkedEarth edifice. However, it is important to note that the LinkedEarth database grown via the wiki is not reliant on LiPD. LiPD is merely a convenient way to exchange paleoclimate data in the Cloud. LiPD is closely aligned with the LinkedEarth ontology, so any change in one is reflected in the other (with a small lag).