Already a familiar resting and gathering place for many, the EPOS booth at this year’s EGU (17 - 22 April, Vienna) again provided home and shelter during that busy week. Superbly looked after by Silvia Filosa, Luigi Abruzzese, and their team, the booth hosted numerous scheduled and spontaneous discussions. The number of EGU participants passing by increased significantly compared to the previous years, and many did not just look for giveaways (no m&m’s this year!) but showed a true interest in EPOS and its developments. A good sign that the EPOS idea is catching on and gaining momentum.
In addition to these outreach activities, EPOS also had organized a session to discuss current and future developments in geoscience research infrastructures. Convened by Massimo Cocco, Lilli Freda, Silvia Filosa, and Florian Haslinger, and with support in chairing by Keith Jeffery, 12 oral and 23 poster contributions addressed a diverse range of topics and issues. The talks were delivered by an illustrious collection of experts and scientists to a packed room of interested participants. They covered new and emerging ICT initiatives and their links to EPOS, like the European Open Science Cloud, EUDAT, EGI, EVER-EST, and the ESA Geohazards Exploitation Platform, discussed research (e-)infrastructure coordination and development, e.g. in the VERCE, COOP+ or ENVRIplus projects, and presented specific activities like the development of federated data services in seismology and beyond, or the use of next generation web-based computing services for training purposes. A clear take-home message (to the author at least) of these presentations was that there are lots of fascinating and smart ideas and developments out there, which manage to attract significant funding from various sponsors (both public and private sector). Most individual scientists, however, (yet) remain relatively lost when trying to figure out how to actually make use of all the good stuff. (And further, at least to an outsider the coordination and interaction among the various larger initiatives remains a bit obscure…)
The poster session prominently featured the EPOS Thematic Core Services (TCS) that are currently being developed and implemented, with additional contributions on EPOS ICT architecture and governance. Other contributions introduced specific regional or topical coordination initiatives or new scientific data products. Facilitated by a generous supply of peanuts, and wine and beer for those who were fast and smart enough, the poster aisle was an active place for discussion of the various services, and allowed to introduce our plans and ideas in more detail to a large audience. The responses clearly demonstrated that EPOS and its services can make a relevant impact on our community, but also highlighted that there is still significant work ahead, not only technically but in particular when it comes to ensuring that we build within EPOS what is actually needed and useful for our science.
The session description, and the contributed abstracts (and where uploaded, also the presentations and posters), can be found here: