Chapter 1 Introduction

The world of standardizing marine biological data can seem complex for the naive oceanographer, biologist, scientist, or programmer. This book intends to ease the burden of learning about the Darwin Core standard by compiling a list of example applications and tools for translating source data into Darwin Core. This collection of resources does not replace the Darwin Core standards documentation ( or the OBIS Manual (, but instead it supplements those resources with examples of real world applications.

In this book we cover:

  • Applications - These are the real world examples of aligning data to Darwin Core.
  • Frequently Asked Questions - A collection of Frequently Asked Questions.
  • Tools - A collection of useful tools, packages, and programs for working with marine biological data.
  • Extras - Some useful extra tidbits about metadata and using GitHub to debug data issues.

If you would like to learn more about standardizing biological data (not only marine), the Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) Biological Data Standards Cluster developed this primer for managers of biological data to provide a quick, easy resource for navigating a selection of the standards that exist. The goal of the primer is to spread awareness about existing standards and is intended to be shared online and at conferences to increase the adoption of standards for biological data and make them FAIR.