Project: Development of a marine XML
IODE involvement in MarineXML began in 2000 with establishment of the marineXML consortium by the previous IODE chair, Ben Searle. This was based on the model of OGC with members making financial contributions in return for voting rights on standards development proposals. This model was not widely accepted by the oceanographic community and the Consortium Secretariat was transferred into the IODE Secretariat in 2002. This initial consortium was replaced by two initiatives. The partners in the consortium formed the core of a successful bid to the European Commission for a project to demonstrate oceanographic data interoperability using an XML-based solution. This was co-ordinated by Keiran Millard from HR Wallingford, ran from 2003 to 2005 and was known as the MarineXML Project. The project undertook a review of marine metadata standards before settling on Climate Science Modelling language (CSML) technology to produce a demonstrator to view diverse types of oceanographic data through a common tool. Secondly, in collaboration with the ICES Marine Data Management committee, a study group was set up to examine the applicability application of XML to marine data exchange systems. The group met three times between April 2002 and May 2004. To ensure that the momentum of the process was not lost a recommendation came out of IODE XVIII (IODE XVIII.7) the establishment of an IODE XML Steering Group. As IOC inherited the MarineXML brand from the European Union project mentioned above, this committee has adopted the title MarineXML Steering Group. The SGXML final report (Isenor and Lowry 2005) included specific recommendations for the development of XML usage in oceanographic data exchange. Overseeing the implementation of these recommendations has been interpreted as falling within the remit of the MarineXML Steering Group. The MarineXML Steering Group has yet to be formally constituted and activities have been restricted to keeping a watching brief on the issues covered by the SGXML recommendations and developing BODC systems in line with those recommendations as reported in the next section. However, it is now considered time to establish group membership and address the two explicit TOR recommendations in IODE XVIII.7.