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Week 8: Introduction to Deep Data

Week 8 Class Plan on finding and using existing data from repositories and other sources

Published onApr 20, 2022
Week 8: Introduction to Deep Data

26 April 2022


This class will focus on use of existing data. We will review data repositories, what kinds of data they hold, and how to find data within them. We will learn about one innovative data repository linked to a data manipulation and display application, which is freely available to everyone (Case study: GeoMapApp). We will also discuss selected examples of physical repositories that contain seafloor and sub-seafloor samples, and talk about how researchers can find out what is available and place requests to obtain samples.


  • Familiarize COBRA MC Fellows with existing data repositories

  • Enhance data discoverability by learning to find desired data types and datasets for  your region of interest

  • Determine the usability and whereabouts of at-home data use and what requires pro-software (availability vs usability)

  • Case Study: GeoMapApp - How to make a site diagram / intro user activity

    • All students will research one or more specific locations/regions to identify and access data and prepare a map. If your project is not location specific, please choose a location/region on which you will focus for some short exercises.

Pre-Class Activities

  • Download and install GeoMapApp and prepare for use (15-20 minutes)

    • Access GeoMapApp resources here:

    • Download and install GeoMapApp on your local computer - versions are available for MacOS, PC (Windows), and Linux

    • There is a comprehensive GeoMapApp user guide that is useful to download for local use, and numerous short, video tutorials are available online. Please skim through p. 11 in the User Guide to get a short overview of the GeoMapApp interface. 

    • It is helpful to have GeoMapApp open as you skim the first part of the User Guide, so you can follow along on your own computer. Please launch the application, you will be greeted with the "splash screen" shown below - choose your preferred map projection and press button labeled <Agree>. 

  • If needed, download and install a utility capable of "unarchiving" datasets that will be delivered to you from data repositories, often in zip, gz, tar, or tgz formats (10 min):

    • If using MacOS, you should have built-in unarchiving (unpacking) abilities using the Archive Utility. Double-click on an archive to unpack it into a folder in the same location as the archive . FYI, you can create an archive in MacOS using the terminal window (explained here), or download a free archive manager that allows point-and-click control of archiving/unarchiving processes (some options here). 

If using Windows 10, you can right-click on a downloaded zip file and select Extract All, will generate a folder containing the contents of the archive. Alternatively, double-click on the archive and it will open into a window (still compressed, but showing you contents), then drag or copy into a working folder. There are several excellent free archive managers for Windows, one of the best being 7zip (available here). Once installed, you can use 7zip to open and extract files from an archive, add files to an archive, or create a new archive.

Class Plan & Materials

  • Hour 1 

  • Hour 2

    • Data Scavenger Hunt Breakouts (30 minutes)

      • Breakout groups:

        • Breakout A: Cambronero, Leonard, Seabrook

        • Breakout B: Cordier, Murdock, Bigham

        • Breakout C: Van Audenhaege, Goode, Roa-Varon

        • Breakout D: Paula, Ponsoni, Shomberg

      • During the breakouts, you’ll hunt down two types of data for your Dream Cruise area, using your Week 8 Class Activity pub to guide your work:

        • What is the latest cruise that you can find with multibeam data for your area?

        • Find one other type of data from a public repository (your choice!)

    • Report-out: 20 min

    • Wrap-up (5 min)

Additional Resources

Class Slides


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