Coastal Marine Informatics (CMI) Initiative: Developing a Web-Based Resource for Coastal and Near Shore Marine Operations
Throughout its entire history the marine sector has relied heavily on information. The breadth of informatic sources of interest to mariners is extensive: hydrographical, meteorological, navigational, ecological, biological, even cultural and political. In all categories, considerable value is placed on valid information derived from reliable sources of knowledge about highly localized conditions and circumstances. Although much has changed over centuries with respect to the variety of sources and depth of information as well as the means by which information is generated and communicated, much has not. Information media fragmentation (some digital, many not), information processing disintegration (disparate collection, transformation, and communication mechanisms), as well as information management deficiencies (in data creation, maintenance, retrieval, and retirement) all remain major challenges in providing a reliable and useable information resource to support marine sector activities. The Coastal Marine Informatics (CMI) Initiative seeks to address the issues of fragmentation, disintegration, and deficient management across informatic sources through the development of a web-based resource facilitating the consolidation, communication and customization of information useful to mariners.