by Jannean Elliott 15 Dec, 2014 in
I’ve always been a “window shopper.” I don’t want to go in and find the store directory, follow the little map, go up the escalator and through the racks…unless the window displays tell me it will probably be worth my time. I tend to approach databases the same way; I want to know what’s in there. Not only do I want some reassurance that what I need is there, but I also want to see if there’s information I may not have realized I need yet.
If you can relate, then you will love the inside view the DOE Data Explorer (DDE) offers with its (what else!) Explore feature. Choose an Explore option from the DDE homepage to check out the most recently added content, browse the titles of every dataset or data collection, see which organizations are sponsoring what data, or discover subject areas into which those data are grouped. The Other Organizations option will show you the originating research organizations and the host websites.
Let’s check out an example. Maybe you’re interested in astrophysics. “Doesn’t the Department of Energy focus mainly on natural gas resources or solar power…stuff like that?” you think. “I should probably check the NASA homepage for astrophysics data.” But first you decide to take a quick peek at the Subject Categories option, and you find “Astronomy and Astrophysics” third from the top of the list. Selecting that category lists 30 collections of astronomy and astrophysics data described in DDE. Now you can explore High-Energy Cosmic Ray Event Data from the Pierre Auger Cosmic Ray Observatory and lots more.