HDF technologies and Resources for Geospatial Data

Presenter: HDF Group

January 19, 2021

Slides: https://uofi.app.box.com/s/zb30ky397v7ax5xm9trgyt9iqn7vdu5b

Video: https://uofi.app.box.com/s/iy7bsjiay529tfbgifhk3w08r1u8twbs


The HDF Group created HDF at NCSA in 1988 to enable scientists and engineers to describe, store, and access large, complex data structures and collections. Since then we have worked with data producers, providers, and users all over the world and in every discipline to develop and evolve HDF to meet the needs of changing technologies and applications. Applications as diverse as gravity wave detection, gene sequencing, and finance use the HDF5 data model and software to acquire and share data and solve problems on the world’s largest computers (including Blue Waters), the cloud, laptops, and embedded devices.

In this talk we will introduce the HDF Group and take a tour of the HDF ecosystem, including the HDF5 data model, HDF5 middleware and cloud services, the HDF community, and the HDF user environment. We present representative applications of HDF5, emphasizing the role HDF plays in the geospatial arena. We discuss current uses of HDF5 to work with high-resolution land-based assets such as point cloud data, and potential future directions such as optimal HDF5 encoding of Discrete Global Grid System geospatial data.


Ms. Elena Pourmal is one of the founders of The HDF Group, a not-for-profit company with the mission to develop and sustain the HDF technology, and to provide free and open access to data stored in HDF. From 1997-2016 Ms. Pourmal led HDF software maintenance, quality assurance and user support efforts. Ms. Pourmal currently serves as HDF5 Product Manager and Engineering Director for The HDF Group, and is also a member of The HDF Group Board of Directors.

Dr. Aleksandar Jelenak A senior informatics architect at The HDF Group, Aleksandar advises the NASA Earth Science Data and Information System on applications of HDF5 related to data processing, cloud computing, data interoperability, international and community standards, and related geoinformatics issues. He also supports open source Python packages that depend on HDF5 and participates in standards organizations such as Earth Science Information Partners and Open Geospatial Consortium.

Dr. Gerd Heber is an Applications Architect at The HDF Group with over 20 years of experience in high-performance computing, I/O, data modeling and management, and has been a user of HDF5 for about the same time. He advises science teams and customers of The HDF Group to make the most effective use of HDF5 in their applications and products. His interests include constructive and applied mathematics, functional languages, and model theory.

John Readey is a senior architect at The HDF Group specializing in tools and services that leverage HDF technologies in the cloud. John developed the Highly Scalable Data Service (HSDS), a REST-based solution for reading and writing complex binary data formats within object-based storage environments such as the Cloud that makes large datasets accessible in a manner thats both fast and cost-effective.