Using published data through VOExplorer

VOExplorer is part of the AstroGrid desktop. Go to and look at the INSTALL menu for Downloads. Launch the Desktop and look at HELP on the web page. The VO Desktop itself containts a little menu offering several services including VOExplorer.

VO Desktop help gives a very simple overview of how VO Registries work and how VOExplorer uses Registry information to filter searches according to your requirements, followed by a link to more detailed help for VOExplorer

The selection efficiency is only as good as the available Registry metadata - please remember that you will get far more users (and therefore references) if people can find your data by a generic search e.g. x-ray, keyword galaxy... rather than having to know that it is called GLUX or whatever.

VOExplorer, by default, sends queries to a Registry which harvests registry information from Publishing registries which contain the descriptions of mature resources. However, you can also view the contents of test registries , as described at changing the Registry endpoint (via Reference Help ).

The VOExplorer help describes how to modify and create lists of data resources, make selections and query them. Note that the interface recognises various types of service such as simple positional or time-interval queries using All VOScope; constructing more sophisticated queries of tabular data with ADQL, or presenting an interface to a remote pipeline e.g. Radio HDF(N) cutout server. The left-hand menu of VOExplorer automatically offers tabs which start the appropriate tool for the current selection.

VODesktop exposes a variety of programming interfaces to VO services. The most highly developed of these currently is the Python scripting interface which allows astronomers to intermingle processing on their desktop with retrieval and processing of data available in the VO.

In addition VODesktop provides a PLASTIC hub which allows desktop applications to intercommunicate facilitating working with the same data in a variety of PLASTIC enabled applications.

-- AnitaRichards - 27 Jun 2008

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Topic revision: r2 - 27 Jun 2008 - PaulHarrison
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