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Using WPS to describe geospatial provenance

Guillem Closa, Joan Masó, Alaitz Zabala and Lluís Pesquer

(Submission #360)


Provenance, also called lineage, is the part of metadata that provides information of sources and processes used to generate a specific geographical product. All levels of the administration need provenance because provides important information to determine the quality of a dataset and its traceability to the original sources. In the INSPIRE distributed environment, where the geospatial data and geoprocessing tools are becoming available as services, provenance information is becoming more valuable for verifying reliability of data and its legal validity. Despite of the known importance of provenance, there is still the lack of standards that fully describe provenance information to ensure reproducibility. The ISO 19115 and ISO 19115-2 standards have been traditionally used in the geospatial community. However, there are some gaps regarding to the concrete model initialization, parameters description and its basic assumptions. In addition, the lack of automated tools for capturing the provenance information is another obstacle that impede the common generation of provenance information. In this sense, we have implemented a tool that captures and represents provenance information based on the combined use of Web Processing Service (WPS) standard and the ISO lineage model. The tool, developed in the context of the MiraMon GIS and RS software, presents a graphical visualization of provenance and allows users to edit provenance information by adding or deleting child processes or child sources to a geospatial workflow. In addition, it allows for reproducing previous processes and scaling them up to similar situations. The main task consisted in describing all the MiraMon modules, their inputs, outputs and process description, with a WPS DescribeProcess document. The DescribeProcess response uses its own XML syntax to describe the exact parameters and values involved in an execution (that can be numbers, datasets, and references to data services or bounding boxes). This allows the system to capture provenance information when a module is executed and to store the information in the metadata file as a part of the quality and lineage information. Then the provenance can be viewed and edited in GeMM (Metadata and Database Relationship Manager) interface. The tool keeps track of the dependencies to source datasets and can browse to their metadata too. The description of MiraMon modules as WPS DescribeProcess documents is also used to generate automatically parts of the module help and will be used to move all MiraMon modules into the web as processing service operations in the near future.


Topic Area:  [2.9] Challenges and approaches to standardization of data and interoperability of systems.
Abstract Type:  Oral Presentation

Additional fields

Comments:   SDI, provenance, traceability, metadata, WPS

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