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Notes from the HUMBOLDT Project

The past three years have been very demanding as well as successful ones for the HUMBOLDT project which has now entered its final phase. Much has been achieved and a very good basis has finally been created for integrated development and application work.

The EC Review in December 2009 was very positive. As a result, the Commission has selected the HUMBODLT project as a representative success story.

This HUMBOLDT Newsletter contains information about the current Open Source releases, HUMBOLDT meetings, User Involvement activities, and the activation of the HUMBOLDT Training Platform, as well as on further ongoing activities and upcoming events.

Enjoy reading and please do not hesitate to give us your feedback. The HUMBOLDT consortium also invites developers and users to test the design and expandability of the framework. Suggestions and contributions are highly welcome.

Dr. Eva Klien, Co-ordinator of the HUMBOLDT Project
Fraunhofer Institute for Computer Graphics Research, Darmstadt, Germany

Project News

HUMBOLDT Framework for Data Harmonisation

In December 2009 new releases of the HUMBOLDT framework tools and services have been published.

The main novelty is the Workflow Design and Construction Service component. It enables users to register and compose geoprocessing functionality into service chains. These service chains can either be encapsulated as OGC WPS or directly implemented on the platform on which the HUMBOLDT Mediator Service is deployed. Furthermore, it provides the functionality to support automated harmonisation.

Since the first public release of HUMBOLDT tools and services there has been an active interest by developers with various backgrounds. Numerous bug reports, feature requests, and further suggestions and contributions have been conceived. Developers and users with an interest in data harmonisation are invited at any time to further test the design and expandability of the framework. The components as well as full specifications are available for free download on the Community Website, which also provides a forum, wiki and issue tracker.

In addition, an easy to understand introduction to all tools and services has been made available to facilitate the understanding and use of the framework.

HUMBOLDT Winter of Code 2010

To follow up on the success of the first Winter of Code in February 2009, a second Winter of Code event took place in February 2010.

Located in Darmstadt, more than 15 developers representing the HUMBOLDT consortium partners jointly worked on several implementation projects. The major goal was to kick off the developments of Milestone 3 of the HUMBOLDT Framework. To follow the developments made by the technical teams, please visit our Community Website

Annual Report 2009

The Annual Report 2009 is available for download at the HUMBOLDT Project Website. It contains the major activities of the HUMBOLDT consortium as well as the technical and scientific results achieved within the third project year. Furthermore, the representative HUMBOLDT Application Scenarios Atmosphere, European Risk Atlas, and Forest are presented as hands-on examples for the use of HUMBOLDT components. Another topic is the development and promotion of the HUMBOLDT User Community.

User Involvement

HUMBOLDT Training Platform

The HUMBOLDT Training Platform and courses are available for free registration. It embraces different course levels targeted at users with different backgrounds and previous knowledge. Beside an optional entrance test on GIS theory and technical issues there are Level 1 courses on GMES, web services, metadata, concepts and standards as well as on data harmonisation in general. Level 2 courses embrace the HUMBOLDT framework components and data harmonisation in HUMBOLDT.

Please feel free to register, review and test the available courses and the platform itself. Any kind of constructive criticism and suggestions are highly welcome.
Call for Participation

The integration of user requirements from various application areas has been an essential part of the HUMBOLDT development process from the very beginning of the project. User requirements have been identified and integrated. In order to amplify the user involvement the project is launching an official call for participation targeted at developers and potential users of HUMBOLDT tools and services. Please feel free to explore the following areas:

  • HUMBOLDT Tools and Services
  • HUMBOLDT Training Platform and Modules
  • Scenario Demonstrators (available soon)


HUMBOLDT Review Meeting December 2009

The EC Review in December 2009 was very positive for the project. On this basis the Commission has selected the HUMBODLT project as a success story that will receive special attention in EC journals, events and communications.

HUMBOLDT Consortium Meeting March 2010

From the 3rd to 5th March the first HUMBOLDT consortium meeting of 2010 took place in Gävle, Sweden. The meeting was hosted by the GIS Institute of the University in Gävle.

The focus of this HUMBOLDT meeting was again set on the scenario work since the development of demonstrators as well as the testing and evaluation of the framework components will be of major importance in the upcoming months. Another important emphasis was set on HUMBOLDT training together with dissemination and exploitation activities, especially addressing the long-term sustainability of the HUMBOLDT results.

Upcoming HUMBOLDT Events

INSPIRE Conference 2010

This year’s INSPIRE Conference 2010 will take place from 22nd to 25th June 2010 in Krakow, Poland. The theme is “INSPIRE as a Framework for Cooperation”.

HUMBOLDT Tools and Services as well as their application in different HUMBOLDT scenarios will be presented in a workshop at the INSPIRE conference. Furthermore, the subsequent papers have been submitted and accepted: “Data Harmonisation Put into Practice by the HUMBOLDT Project,” and “Integrating spatial data integration – An Architecture for Complex Transformation Services.”

6th GIScience

Zurich, Switzerland will be the host city of the 6th GIScience conference from September 14th-17th, 2010. Thorsten Reitz (Fraunhofer IGD, Darmstadt, Germany) will present his paper “A Mismatch Description Language for Conceptual Schema Mapping and its Cartographic Representation.”

AGILE 2010

The 13th AGILE International Conference on Geographic Information Science: “Geospatial Thinking” will take place from 10th-14th May 2010 in Guimarães, Portugal. A paper by Thorsten Reitz, Daniel Fitzner (both Fraunhofer IGD, Darmstadt, Germany) and Ulrich Schäffler (Technische Universität München, Munich, Germany) on the execution of conceptual schema mappings was accepted for presentation.

Further Events

Beside the above mentioned conferences HUMBOLDT will be represented by workshops or papers at the following events:

  • IMDIS 2010 – International Conference on Marine Data and Information Systems, March 29th – 31st in Paris, France
  • Kartdagar – Kartografiska Sällskapet, April 14th – 16th in Jönköping, Sweden
  • Digital Earth Summit – June 12th – 14th in Nessebar, Bulgaria
  • SDH 2010 – 14th International Symposium on Spatial Data Handling, May 16th – 28th in Hong Kong, China

The HUMBOLDT Project in brief

The four-year EU project HUMBOLDT contributes to the implementation of a European Spatial Data Infrastructure (ESDI) that integrates the diversity of spatial data available for a multitude of European organisations. It is the aim of this project to manage and advance important parts of the implementation process of this ESDI. The main goal of the HUMBOLDT project is to enable organisations to document, publish and harmonise their spatial information. The software tools and processes created will demonstrate the feasibility and advantages of an Infrastructure for Spatial Information in Europe as planned by the INSPIRE initiative, meeting the goals of Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES).

Learn more about HUMBOLDT by visiting our Website.


HUMBOLDT Project Office

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