Impacts of data format variability on environmental visual analysis systems

January 15, 2007

This paper discusses the benefits and drawbacks inherent in data format variability in the context of environmental visual analysis systems. The current state of system performance can be improved through judicious selection and adoption of data formats. An end-user’s ability to choose from a wide range of data formats to use based on his own needs is contrasted with the challenge created by diverse user format needs and the resulting solutions of multi-format devices or data conversion tools. A parallel between digital music format evolution and environmental data formats is drawn, and the lessons learned from the commercial digital music industry are shown to be applicable to environmental community.