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The standard referred to in this document is the Content Standard for Digital Geospatial Metadata.


People often assume that data producers must generate their own metadata.

Certainly they should provide informal, unstructured documentation, but they should not necessarily have to go through the rigors of fully-structured formal metadata.

Metadata helps publicize and support the data you or your organization have produced.

Metadata that conform to the FGDC standard are the basic product of the National Geospatial Data Clearinghouse, a distributed online catalog of digital spatial data.

These compound elements are important because they describe the relationships among other elements.

For example, a bibliographic reference is described by an element called Over the past several months there have been several messages posted in regard to Metadata 'Core.' Several messages reflected frustration with the complexity of the CSDGM and suggested the option of a simplified form or 'Core' subset of the full standard.The set of tags allowed in an XML document is defined in a schema.A schema that describes the tagging used in the above fragment might contain lines like these: element can’t contain any other elements, only string data. The meaning and use of the tags described in a schema must be documented in a guide or reference that tells the writer how to use these tags.This clearinghouse will allow people to understand diverse data products by describing them in a way that emphasizes aspects that are common among them.Data managers who are either technically-literate scientists or scientifically-literate computer specialists.At the other end of the spectrum was concern the full standard already is the 'Core' in that it represents the information necessary to evaluate, obtain, and use a data set.