A metadata (from the greek meta “as well, after” and from Latin datum “Information”), is the information that describes, explains and puts digital data.
The main metadata function is to provide useful information for users:
– Identifying the presence of data in the geographical database;
– To know the access mode and use of geographic data;
– To assess the usability of data in specific application contexts;
– To know the systems and procedures used for the production of data;
– To know the procedures and the data update rate.
The INSPIRE Directive (2007/2 / EC) requires each Spatial Data Infrastructure are responsible for the creation and exhibition of a discovery service, powered by the metadata of spatial data and services, which constitutes a real “catalog” of spatial data infrastructure.
The metadata catalog allows you to search for local and national environmental information in OGC format – CSW (Catalog Service Web). Once the data or service of interest, which can be found metadata, view the data in a viewer (along with other topics of interest) and download it when provided by the broadcasting policies taken by the owners.
The Catalog is the organized collection point of this heritage information available at the Ministry and is aimed at sharing and interchange of geographic information.
It can also refer to the metadata also by external clients via the CSW service.