Recent Enhancements, News, and Activities

  • As part of the Datashare project, we developed several new features:
    • Data user agreements (DUA): Curators may now require anyone downloading their data to first agree to a statement about using the data. Before downloading an object with a DUA, the enduser will first be presented with additional information about using the data, including any restrictions. Currently, curators may define DUAs at the collection level; we have plans to allow DUAs to be defined at the object level. Curators may configure DUAs to fit their requirements. For more information, see the specification at https://confluence.ucop.edu/display/Curation/DUA.
    • Large object download. We have improved the performance of downloading files by streaming the container file as it is created. For large files, this results in a significant improvement in performance. We are working on a new method for downloading very large objects (greater than 4Gb) .More information about this will distributed when the service is ready.
  • We formally launched the DataUp service (formerly DCXL) on 2 October. Sponsored by Microsoft Research and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, DataUp will enable the preservation and sharing of research data via Microsoft Excel. Merritt will be a storage node for this project, allowing researchers to save, share and preserve their Microsoft Excel files in Merritt. You can read more about DataUp at http://datapub.cdlib.org.
  • We have signed an agreement with the San Diego Supercomputer Center to use their Cloud Storage Services. We will store all Merritt content at SDSC, and will be moving current Merritt collections to SDSC in early 2013.
  • We are close to having a cost model and service level agreement for Merritt users. You can see the current draft at https://confluence.ucop.edu/display/Curation/Cost+Modeling, including a white paper and cost calculator. We are working with UCOP to get approval for the plan. We will be contacting Merritt users when we are closer to having full approval.
  • We experienced a significant problem with the Merritt Inventory service that resulted in slow response time, some corrupted metadata records and at certain times unavailability of the Merritt service in late August through mid-September. This problem had no impact on the content (including metadata files) stored in Merritt. The problem concerned only the metadata used for search and display within the Merritt user interface (which we call “Inventory”). We fixed the problems, regenerated the records, and the system is operating normally again. We apologize for any inconvenience this may caused. We are working now to move the Inventory service from 4Store, an RDF-based database, to MySql. We know that MySql will provide improved performance as we continue to scale up.

Upcoming Events
UC3 will be hosting two in-person, two-day workshops this November (in Oakland and UC-Irvine), where we will discuss the research data life cycle, and the tools and services offered by CDL to support it, including Merritt. This workshop will be informative for UC librarians and library staff supporting researchers, in addition to staff at data centers and offices of research. For registration details, see http://uc3workshops.eventbrite.com/.

Publications
Starr, Joan; Willett, Perry; Federer, Lisa; Horning, Claudia; and Bergstrom, Mary Linn (2012) “A Collaborative Framework for Data Management Services: The Experience of the University of California,”Journal of eScience Librarianship: Vol. 1: Iss. 2, Article 7. doi:10.7191/jeslib.2012.1014
Available at: http://escholarship.umassmed.edu/jeslib/vol1/iss2/7

This article describes the full suite of services provided by UC3 (including the DMPTool) in the context of the research data lifecycle.

Merritt Service Description
Merritt is a production level service that provides the UC community with an easy to use tool to manage, archive, and share their content. Content can be deposited and managed via a user-interface or an API.

Merritt Training Materials, Guides, FAQs and Webinars
More information about Merritt is available at http://www.cdlib.org/services/uc3/merritt or by sending an inquiry to uc3@ucop.edu. See also Merritt webinars: http://www.cdlib.org/services/uc3/uc3webinars.html.

Service Monitoring and Availability
Check Merritt’s system status page http://www.cdlib.org/contact/system.html.

Merritt Service Managers
Perry Willett perry.willett@ucop.edu and Adrian Turner adrian.turner@ucop.edu or uc3@ucop.edu.