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Author Topic: Getting started with SDMX - a few questions  (Read 6625 times)

Ricco Førgaard

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Getting started with SDMX - a few questions
« on: December 29, 2010, 04:42:29 AM »

Hi,

I'm working on Nesstar and we are currently investigating the possibilities for adding SDMX export to Nesstar WebView. So far I have read the documents at sdmx.org and have an idea of what SDMX can do. However, there are a few unanswered questions I would like to know more about.

1) Are Concepts defined centrally (for instance by the SDMX initiative) or can anybody define a Concept to use?
2) A given deployed Nesstar server can hold many different types of data. Should it use a global Structure Definition for that site or one definition per cube to export?
3) How are Structure Definitions linked to the data (or: given some SDMX file, how does one find the Structure Definition that describes the data)?

I'm under the impression that SDMX is a "two-file minimum" - meaning you need at least a Structure Definition and the data file itself to pass on data. Is this correct? What is the most generic way to describe data using SDMX?

Our aim is to add an export function to cubes in Nesstar WebView allowing others to reuse the data (and possibly metadata in the long run). We hope to be able to add this on top of our existing code as an extra feature in WebView without having to make changes to the entire stack (Publisher, Server, WebView). This means the data publishers/authors shouldn't need to know about SDMX. Everything should work automatically.

Any comments, links to documents, case studies etc would be greatly appreciated. I welcome any ideas and suggestions to how SDMX export should be.
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Ricco Førgaard

Erik van Ingen - FAO

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Re: Getting started with SDMX - a few questions
« Reply #1 on: December 30, 2010, 01:38:20 AM »

I will try to respond to you quickly, others are welcome to add more!

1) Are Concepts defined centrally (for instance by the SDMX initiative) or can anybody define a Concept to use?
There are cross domain concepts mentioned in the SDMX CONTENT-ORIENTED GUIDELINES:
http://sdmx.org/wp-content/uploads/2009/01/01_sdmx_cog_annex_1_cdc_2009.pdf
If you have more concepts (which you most likely have) you can create them for yourself.

(2) A given deployed Nesstar server can hold many different types of data. Should it use a global Structure Definition for that site or one definition per cube to export?
Preferably you would define a DSD for each type of data, so for one definition for each cube to export. In our project we have a similar situation and we started by only generating the genericData without a DSD. This can be useful as a start; however it is more in the spirit of SDMX to publish your data with a reference to a DSD.

3) How are Structure Definitions linked to the data (or: given some SDMX file, how does one find the Structure Definition that describes the data)?
In a SDMX dataset there is usually a link to the DSD. For instance a generic SDMX dataset can have this element:
<generic:KeyFamilyRef>CAPTURE_KEYFAMILY</generic:KeyFamilyRef>
The keyfamily is part of the DSD.

(4)I'm under the impression that SDMX is a "two-file minimum" - meaning you need at least a Structure Definition and the data file itself to pass on data. Is this correct? What is the most generic way to describe data using SDMX?
Yes, as described in (2), you usually start of by defining your concepts, codelists and DSD. Next based on the DSD, you generate the SDMX dataset.

(5)Any comments, links to documents, case studies etc would be greatly appreciated. I welcome any ideas and suggestions to how SDMX export should be.
For publishing SDMX data there is the choice whether to use SOAP or REST as a protocol. Metadata is published through the so called Registry, data through the so called Repository or Dissemination. You can use an existing SDMX Registry and/or Repository out there or develop one for yourself.
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