What's Happening

October 7-8, 2019 - GeoEDF Stakeholder Workshop

The GeoEDF project will hold its first stakeholder workshop and advisory board meeting on October 7-8, 2019 at Purdue University, West Lafayette, IN. Funded by the NSF CSSI program, GeoEDF is a five year project that will develop a data framework to provide seamless connections among platforms, data and tools, making large scientific and social geospatial datasets directly usable in scientific models and tools through a plug-n-play data connector/processor framework. We are looking forward to this opportunity to interact with our advisory board members and potential stakeholders of the project!

September 27, 2019 - MyGeoHub for Learning

MyGeoHub's course capability is being used by multiple training efforts recently. The GLASS project led by Prof. Tom Hertel and a US-China INFEWS project (funded by NSF) led by Profs. M. Huber held a short training course of Multis-cale Analysis of Sustainability, September 16-20 where international attendees used SIMPLE-G gridded modeling tool (interactive online tool hosted on MyGeoHub and using XSEDE computing resources) for learning and discussions. Profs. Merwade and Huber are using MyGeoHub to teach a graduate level cyber training course (FAIR Data Practice, EAPS 59100) to earth science students on how to make their research FAIR by learning best practices and tools and practice on Github and MyGeohub, such as publishing data and research software.

September 24, 2019 - Gateways 2019 presentation

Rajesh Kalyanam and Carol Song presented two posters titled "GeoEDF: An Extensible Geospatial Data Framework for FAIR Science" and "Leveraging MyGeoHub Gateway for Cyber Training and Workforce Development" at the Gateways 2019 conference on September 24, 2019 at San Diego, CA. These posters highlighted the design of the GeoEDF data framework and the enhancement of MyGeoHub's geospatial data management and processing capabilities to support the development of the next generation workforce in multiple science and engineering domains.

September 1, 2019 - New undergraduate students joining the team!

The GeoEDF team is excited to have three undergraduate students joining the team this fall semester! Halee Fisher  (freshman) and Jeremy Chang (junior) are funded by the Purdue Discovery Park Undergraduate Internship program (DURI), and Meriem Bounab (junior) is funded by the NSF GeoEDF award. They will work along side this interdisciplinary project team to develop research software to help connect domain science data and modeling tools with advanced cyberinfrastructure. More details can be found at 

July 7, 2019 - New release of MultiSpec

A new release of MultiSpec Online includes the K Nearest Neighbor classifier, one of the simplest machine learning classifiers.  A user can change the k value for nearest neighbors by holding the shift key down before selecting 'K Nearest Neighbor (KNN)' in the 'Procedure' dropdown menu in the Classify dialog box. One can threshold results by setting the minimum number of most common nearest training neighbors. For example setting the threshold to 4 will require that a pixel be assigned to a class only if there are 4 or more training pixels for that class in the k nearest neighbors. Note that the threshold has to be less than or equal to the 'k' value for the classifier. One can also create a 'KNN Values File' which is similar to a probability image file; the resulting image indicates the number of common classes for each pixel in the image.

MultiSpec Online is the online version of the freely available MultiSpec software for multispectral and hyperspectral image processing and visualization, created by Larry Biehl of Purdue University. The online version has become the most popular tool on MyGeoHub, having been used by more than 1000 users to date.

Past News

October 26, 2018 - New HydroShare Release Provides Improved Accessibility from Resource Page

The latest HydroShare release 1.15.5 now includes the ability to launch GABBs tools on, directly from a HydroShare resource page. As proof-of-concept, the MultiSpec tool has been configured to be launchable from any geospatial raster resource uploaded to HydroShare, and will automatically load the raster resource on launch. This implementation leverages several technologies including, iRODS federation, OAuth authentication and customizable HUBzero tool launch URLs.

October 1, 2018 - Congratulations to Jaewoo Shin for being named the Young Professional of the Year at the 13th Gateway Computing Environments Conference (Gateways 2018)!  This is the second year that one of the GABBs team members has won this award -- Rajesh Kalyanam won the same award at Gateways 2017. Click here to find out more about Jaewoo and his accomplishments. 

August 20, 2018 - We are excited to announce that the GABBs team has been awarded a new NSF CSSI Data Framework grant to develop the phase 2 of the GABBs cyberinfrastructure! In GABBs 2.0 (as we now informally call the new project), our focus is on connecting disparate and distributed data sources and making them usable within researchers' computational tools and simulations. Click here for more detailed information.

We are also excited about two new projects that will join the geospatial science gateway family! The PIOT-Hub project will develop an innovative approach and model to create a physical map of current industrial interactions based on Physical Input-Output Tables (PIOTs), which can be used to identify hidden vulnerabilities as result of mutual interdependence of sectors in the economy and help build a robust and resilient circular economy of recycling and recovery. The "U-cube" project, funded by a NSF CSSI Data Element grant, will establish a computational cyberinfrastructure to improve city models used to study of the health and behavior of a city, determine the ability to sustain a growing population, and study potential impacts of extreme weather events.

July 28, 2018 - Many on the GABBs team, along with colleagues from Purdue's Research Computing (RCAC), were at the annual PEARC18 conference, Pittsburgh, PA last week. Among a myriad of activities, members of the team gave presentations at the conference, including:

  • a paper titled "Social Media Modeling of Human Behavior in Natural Emergencies" authored by Matei, S., Kalyanam, R., Zhao, L., Song, C. 
  • a paper titled "Introducing Research Concepts to Middle School Students via a Geospatial Science Gateway" authored by Biehl, L., Zhao, L., Ellis, C., Kalyanam, R., Campbell, R. and Song, C. 
  • a showcase demonstration "Developing a Collaborative Hydrological Modeling Platform” highlighting the workflow that can be created online using SWATShare, SWATFlow, and HydroGlobe
  • a poster presented by our graduate student Jaewoo Shin on "A Flexible, Cloud-based Sensor Data Service Platform" on GABBs collaboration with plant sensor researcher/engineers. 

MyGeoHub was the most popular of the several science gateways used in the SGCI Hackathon at PEARC18. Rajesh mentored a team of students that worked on a Jupyter notebook interface to track active weather events and process the public Twitter stream to generate a word cloud of tweets. 

May 2018 - Our DURI intern student Ya-Wen Chu successfully completed her work with us for the spring 2018 semester (supervisors: Lan, Jungha). She presented a poster about her work at the DURI student conference in April. We wish her all the best in her future endeavors!


Engaging the Community

The GABBs development is driven by requirements and use cases from the broader science and education communities. Part of our effort is to continuously seek and gather user requirements and refine our priority and schedule based user input.

Domain scientists are co-investigators on the project. They regularly meet with the developers to review design, iterate on interface and feature implementation.

Our outreach and engagement activities include engaging scientists on our advisory board for input, participating in domain science workshops, conferences, and other events, to listen, present, and demonstrate work-in-progress.  We have also hosted, sponsored and supported various training  and student engagement activities, as well as collaborated with our partners in exploring interoperability and integration of respective cyberinfrastructure projects.

This page has a partial list of our activities and announcements throughout the project.


July 9-10, 2018 - Lan and Venkatesh represented the GABBs project the NSF DIBBs 2018 PI meeting in D.C., in July.  They presented the project's white paper on the challenges and approaches of our DIBBs project and a poster on the latest developments at the workshop. 

July 15-17, 2018 - Carol participated in the second conceptualization workshop of the Geospatial Software Institute (GSI) in Chicago, IL. This workshop focused on geospatial use cases and core technical capabilities. The team contributed a white paper, titled "Challenges in discovering, accessing, processing and utilizing large remote spatial data"to the workshop.

May - July, 2018 - Carol participated in the NSF OAC workshop “Rethinking NSF's Computational Ecosystem for 21st Century Science and Engineering” in May, and the Geospatial Software Institute conceptualization workshop #2 in Chicago, in July. 

June 2018 - Carol presented the interoperability work we have done in the GABBs project at the International workshop on science gateways in Edinburgh, UK, in June. 

May 9-11, 2018- Larry presented a poster at the Indiana GIS Conference in Ft. Wayne, IN, about IndianaView and made several fact sheets available. A poster about MultiSpec Online on MyGeoHub by Wei-Kong Hsu won 3rd place in the student poster competition.

April 10-12, 2018 - Carol participated the first workshop on Conceptualizing a Research Software Sustainability Institute (URSSI) at UC Berkeley campus. 

January 28-30, 2018 - Carol participated in the first conceptualization workshop of the Geospatial Software Institute (GSI) at USC campus, Los Angeles, CA, as a panelist. The team contributed a white paper, titled "Envisioning an Open, Collaborative and Seamless Geospatial Software Ecosystem", co-authored by Rajesh, Lan and Carol. 



October 2017 - The GABBs team actively participated in the Gateways 2017 conference where the science gateway community gathers to share knowledge and experience, and develop collaborations. Rob presented our latest work on extending GABBs to work with field data collection via mobile apps (paper and slides). Rajesh demonstrated how a science project could utilize GABBs geospatial data management and workflow features (paper and slides). The team also had discussions with interested projects around its poster at the conference.

October 2017 - Carol Song joined more than 450 participants from 68 countries at the Impacts World 2017 conference in Potsdam, Germany to discuss challenges and solutions in climate-impacts research. Carol gave a presentation at a workshop on "Universities as catalysts for change and community building around the Sustainable Development Goals", citing scientific applications and tools enabled GABBs and MyGeoHub. Her presentation, titled "An open source geospatial cyberinfrastructure for interdisciplinary collaboration and broader engagement" is available here.

July, 2017 -  Rajesh Kalyanam presented a paper on our experiences enabling automated GABBs installations in AWS, titled "Cloud-enabling a Collaborative Research Platform: The GABBs Story"  at the Software and Data track at the PEARC17 conference. This paper details how the GABBs software and packaging is enabled in the AWS cloud. 

July, 2017 - The GABBs team in collaboration with the HUBzero team conducted a half-day hands-on tutorial at the PEARC17 conference. The tutorial titled "Interactive Science and Geospatial Visualization Tools for HUBzero Science Gateways" included presentations on various GABBs tools as well as hands-on interactive geospatial exercises in the Jupyter and R Shiny environments.  

July, 2017 - GABBs release 2.0 ! A fully automated GABBs installation is now possible on Amazon Web Services (AWS). AWS CloudFormation can now be used to obtain a fully-featured GABBs HUBzero hub in AWS cloud resources in under an hour. Users do not need to have any prior system administration experience and can use an intuitive wizard to configure and setup this hub. Open-source software packages are also now available for users with prior system administration experience who want to install GABBs on their own resources. 

June, 2017 - Carol Song presented GABBs at the 9th International Workshop on Science Gateways (IWSG17) in Poznan, Poland. This paper gives a comprehensive description of the GABBs software building blocks, including iData, pyMapLib, geovis render server and GeoBuilder, as well as how GABBs are disseminated. (download the paper)

June, 2017 - Larry Biehl led a two-day Geosciences presentation and hands-on tutorial for 30 middle school students at the Purdue TOTAL (Turned Onto Technology & Leadership) Camp. Participants received a 75 minute presentation covering GABBs, geospatial research and the MultiSpec tool on the first day and worked through exercises on understanding and manipulating flood images from the Landsat 5 satellite on the second. 

February, 2017 -GABBs installed on a hub at Georgia Tech! The MATIN (Materials Innovation Network) hub is a HUBzero-based collaborative material science research platform that uses iRODS for data storage. The GABBs team conducted discussions with them demonstrating the automatic metadata capture and indexing enhancements to HUBzero and iRODS provided by iData. Subsequently, the iData plugins and iRODS microservices were installed on the MATIN hub, enabling automatic metadata capture and keyword search using HUBzero’s Solr search mechanism. This integration demonstrated both the generality of iData and GABBs building blocks beyond geospatial data as well as the path to adding GABBs capabilities to a pre-existing hub.

January 11-12, 2017 - Carol Song and Lan Zhao joined the investigators from 34 other DIBBs projects in the first NSF DIBBs PI workshop in Arlington, VA. Carol presented the GABBs results as a panelist on the "Significant Results" panel during the first day of the workshop. Carol and Lan also presented a poster on the GABBs project goals and results to date at the workshop. Prior to the workshop, the GABBs team submitted a white paper on the significant challenges in the project. A final workshop report has been published in March 2017. 


December 12-16, 2016 - The investigators (including Drs. Song, Merwade, Rajib, and students) participated in the AGU Fall meeting in San Francisco, CA. They presented the GABBs project and hydrologic modeling research results in the poster sessions, and discussed potential applications with researchers from NOAA, NASA and a number of academic institutions.

November 14-17, 2016 - Carol Song, Lan Zhao, Rajesh Kalyanam and  Larry Biehl  provided information about the GABBs project including iData, MultiSpec Online, PyMapLib, and GeoBuilder during the 2016 Super Computing Conference in Salt Lake City, Utah.

November 11, 2016 - Carol Song presented the GABBs project at the South Big Data Hub webinar.

November 4, 2016 - Larry Biehl  presented posters about the GABBs project, MultiSpec Online, PyMapLib and GeoBuilder during Purdue's College GIS Day.

November 2, 2016 - Carol Song presented the group’s work at Gateways 2016 conference, hosted by the NSF funded Science Gateways Community Institute in San Diego, CA, November 2-3, 2016. The presentation is based on a short paper titled “MyGeoHub Science Gateway for Spatial Data and a Model for Sustainability", co-authored by Lan Zhao, Carol Song, and Larry Biehl. 

October 17, 2016 - Larry Biehl  presented a poster about MultiSpec Online during the AmericaView Fall Technical Meeting held on the University of Louisiana - Lafayette campus.

October 6, 2016 - Larry Biehl and Kathy Kozenski of the Geography Educators' Network of Indiana (GENI) presented a session for High School students on Purdue's High School GIS day about geospatial technology.

August 1, 2016 - Congratulations to our summer  interns, Abby, Lingkun, Bek, and Arjun! Thanks for being part of our GABBs team this summer and for your contribution o the project. Check out our students' posters at the Team page.

July 18, 2016 - The HUBzero and GABBs teams jointly conducted a tutorial at the XSEDE annual conference on "how to build a campus cyberinfastructure hub on the cloud with HUBzero".  The geospatial data capabilities provided by GABBs is part of the platform to support research, education and collaboration. Users now can stand up a HUBzero instance on Amazon by using the HUBzero Amazon Marketplace Instance. The GABBs team also presented a poster there to the audience.

July 2016 - Larry Biehl presented the paper "PyMapLib for Rapid Development of Geospatial Data Analysis Tools" at the The Third International Conference on CyberGIS and Geospatial Data Science (CyberGIS’16) in Urbana, IL, July 27-28, 2016.  

June 13-14, 2016 - Larry Biehl, Abby Perez, Carolyn Ellis, Lan Zhao and Carol Song worked with 8th and 9th graders at the TOTAL (Turned Onto Technology & Leadership) Summer Camp in West Lafayette, IN.  This camp included 36 students from diverse backgrounds and from around the United States. Larry presented "Geospatial data around you" to students  covering geospatial data and research and an introduction to the GeoBuilder and MultiSpec tools from the GABBS project. The following day, they each had 75 minutes of hands-on time with exercises to find locations within Indiana with highest reported rain events using Geobuilder and to map a flood event in southern Illinois and Indiana using MultiSpec. The GABBS team worked closely with the students in multiple sessions, helping them with technical questions and, at the same time, collecting valuable feedback. Most students were able to accomplish the tasks. 

June 2016 - Team members Rajesh, Lan and Erich participated in the iRODS annual user group meeting in Chapel Hill, NC. Rajesh presented a paper on our experience of integrating iRODS with HUBzero, along with a live demo. Read our blog here.

May 2016 - PI Carol Song gave presentation at the workshop on Best Practices in Data Infrastructure, Pittsburgh, PA. 

April 2016 - Members of the GABBS team participated in the 5th NDS (National Data Service) workshop, held in Chapel Hill, NC. Read our blog on the interactions there.

April 1, 2016 - Interviews with GABBs PI Carol Song and NSF Program Director Bob Chadduck have been reported in an article titled "Build geodata block by block", by George I. Seffers, published in the online magazine Signals (click here to view the article). 

March 2-3, 2016 - Larry Biehl updated Indiana Congressional staffers about IndianaView's geospatial activities in Indiana including MultiSpec Online.

January 2016 - GABBs team has been working on an easy-to-use map library, PyMapLib. This library allows tool developer to easily include spatial data interaction and visualization in their tools. The library provides an easy-to-use API (not requiring expert knowledge in dealing with maps). It also comes with a ready-to-use map widget that third party tools can embedded in their code.  The team plans to release PyMapLib as open source in the first half of 2016. 


March 4-5, 2015: Meeting at RENCI with Hydroshare team

March 5, 2015: Meeting with DFC PI Reagan Moore to discuss collaboration between GABBs and DFC

April 13, 2015: NSF  Review of DIBBS, Washington D.C.

  • An early release of iData - the geospatial data management software on HUBzero

  • An early release of geospatial data viewing plugin for HUBzero Publication, Project, etc.

  • Demonstrations of geospatial map rendering tools

  • Demonstration of the data presentation builder

  • Demonstration of remote sensing image tools

May 12-13, 2015:  Presentation to the Indiana GIS conference, Bloomington, IN

May 19-21, 2015:  Presentation to the USDA project Useful to Usable (U2U), Davenport, IA

June 22-25, 2015:  Presentation at the Unidata conference, user Boulder, CO

  • At the invitation of the organizing committee, PI Dr. Song presented the GABBS project at the Unidata community workshop in Boulder, CO, in June 2015.  The audience is largely from the meteorology community and provided valuable feedback to our work in progress. Discussion with the IDV software group is underway to potential leverage the HUBzero platform for putting IDV online.   

June, 2015: iRODS Consortium

  • GABBs team is working with iRODS Consortium to integrate the new microservices developed in GABBs for automated geospatial metadata extraction  into the iRODS repository. 

Oct. 5-9, 2015: The 9th Symposium of the International Society for Digital Earth (ISDE), Halifax, NS, Canada

  • The GABBs project director co-chaired the session on Global Modeling and Earth Observation Analysis. She also presented the GABBs building blocks development to an enthusiastic audience.  GABBs work was mentioned several times by the keynote speaker, Dr. Dawn Wright, in her talk on "toward a digital resilience" as addressing the key issues of digital resiliency ("easy leads to exposure, exposure leads to adoption"). 

October, 2015: Integration of SWAT and LISFLOOD-FP

  • Also in October, Co-PI Merwade and his students presented the integration of SWAT and LISFLOOD-FP science case at the 2015 SWAT Conference, West Lafayette, IN.

November 12, 2015: Purdue College GIS Day

  • Co-PI Larry Biehl presented geospatial tools, including GABBS work, at the Purdue College GIS Day, West Lafayette, IN.  The audience consists of graduate students, faculty and other researchers in physical sciences, social sciences and liberal arts domains.

December 15-18, 2015: AGU Fall Meeting, San Francisco, CA

  • Members of the GABBS team participated in the AGU Fall meeting  in San Francisco, CA, December 15-18, 2015.  The PI Dr. Song presented the GABBS project as an invited speaker. Co-PI Merwade and his students presented two posters on Large Scale Flood Modeling. 

December, 2015: GABBS & HydroShare Collaboration

  • GABBS team is working with the NSF SI2 funded HydroShare project to realize interoperability between the two cyberinfrastructure. Currently, the two teams are implementing support for GABBS production site ( and HydroShare  to cross-authenticate users on either side and access hydrologic resources across the CIs. 


January, 2014: Collaboration with the DataNet iRODS project

  • Dr. Reagan Moore, PI of the DataNet Federation Consortium (DFC) project from University of NC, on the Purdue campus, January 2014.  The two teams are collaborating on iRODS infrastructure and new micro-services.

February, 2014: Collaboration with Globus

  • The GABBs team met with the Globus team in February 2014 and identified several areas of integration opportunities. Since then, the GABBs team has integrated Globus data transfer into HUBzero, and created scientific tools to enable large data movement using Globus "under the hood".

March 28-29, 2014: US-UK Data Analytics workshop, Washington D.C.

  • Project director Dr. Song  attended the UK-US Data Analytics Workshop organized and sponsored by the Future of Information Alliance at the University of Maryland, where the group explored opportunities and shared challenges in the rapidly evolving field of data analytics in the era of “big data”, many of which are highly relevant to this GABBs project and could potentially be impacted by the outcome of the GABBs project. Dr. Song chaired a breakout session to discuss potential projects and proposals, which were included in the  workshop report as recommendation to funding agencies in the U.S. and U.K. governments.

July, 2014: Brown Dog  Workshop 

  • GABBs project director presented the project at the Brown Dog Workshop at UIUC  in July 2014. This visit helped the two projects to have a better understanding of the potential for collaboration, include two-way interactions between Brown Dog utilities and GABBs spatial data and modeling services

August, 2014: CyberGIS'14 - The Second International Conference on CyberGIS and Geodesign, Redlands, CA

  • GABBs project director Dr. Song  served as a panelist on the "CyberGIS Future Directions" panel at the conference and shared GABBs project development with colleagues. Common challenges and shared experience are valuable to both projects and the communities they serve, and especially helpful to the GABBs team during their initial development. Potential areas of collaboration were identified.

August, 2014: US-China Open Data workshop, Washington D.C.

  • At the invitation of the National Academy of Sciences (representing U.S. CODATA) and Secure World Foundation, project director Dr. Song attended the US-China Earth Observations Data Workshop: Moving Forward on Data Policy and Cooperation in Earth Observations with a Focus on Disaster Data. She chaired the session on Disaster Data Sharing and the CODATA Task Group meeting on Disaster Data. Disaster related data are very diverse in scale, format, timeliness, availability, and sensitivity. Sharing them presents significant challenges. The valuable input from the discussions are being incorporated into the GABBs design. This is an important community to support by GABBs enabled cyberinfrastructure.

September 10-12, 2014: Geoshare Workshop and Model Improvement Workshop, West Lafayette, IN

  • GABBs project and progress were presented at these workshops.  The  GABBs team participated in the main meetings and breakout sessions. Dr. Song chaired the breakout session on workflows. The team had productive discussions with a diverse community of researchers, practitioners and stakeholders from academia, non-profit research organizations, government agencies (NOAA, NASA, USDA, etc),  and industry from the U.S., Canada, Europe, Asia and Africa, The input and the follow-on actions from the community were integrated into our requirement and prioritization process and schedule.

September 29-30, 2014: HUBzero annual conference (HUBbub), Indianapolis, IN

  • The GABBs team had a significant presence at the 2014 Hubzero conference. They will present the GABBs project, as well as our work with the user community. This is the first year the HUBzero conference has a session dedicated to topics of geospatial capabilities, with contributions from the GABBs team who has been developing such capabilities in partnership with domain scientists. Presentations from the GABBs team include:
    • GABBs: Broadening Access to Geospatial Capabilities, Carol Song
    • Developing a CollaborativeEnvironment for Useful to Useable (U2U) Project, Larry Biehl
    • AgMIP Data Aggregator: Leveraging Globus Online and HUBzero to Make Global Spatial Data Accessible, Lan Zhao

October 8, 2014: NSF Discoveries

  • Technology is putting complex topics like severe weather and climate change on the map--literally. Mapping data associated with specific geographic locations is a powerful way to glean new and improved knowledge from data collections and to explain the results to policymakers and the public. Particularly useful is the ability to layer different kinds of geospatial data on top of one another and see how they interact.  Read more.

November 7, 2014: Purdue GIS Day, West Lafayette, IN

  • Project director presented GABBs project to the Purdue GIS Day audience, an event with attendance from faculty, researchers, educators and students in a variety of domains, including science, engineering, humanities and social sciences.

November 23, 2013: "Purdue Geospatial Data Project will let Almost Anyone put Almost Anything on Map" published in Directions Magazine

  • A powerful Web-based system enabling people worldwide to better predict such things as damaging floods and potential effects of climate change is the goal of a $4.5 million, four-year project begun by Purdue University researchers.  Read more.

November 20, 2013: Purdue Researchers embarks on new geospatial data project funded by NSF published in Purdue News

  • The project, funded by the National Science Foundation, will add geospatial data hosting, processing and sharing capabilities to Purdue's HUBzero, a platform for building feature-rich websites enabling research and education. This should open the way for easy development of a variety of Web-enabled tools for probing and presenting geospatial data in ways that can help address pressing issues in the United States and around the globe.  Read more.

December 4-5, 2014: NSF HPDC-Polar Workshop, Rutgers University

  • Project director Dr. Song participated in the HPDC-Polar Workshop at the campus of Rutgers University. This event brings together the communities of high performance computing and Polar science and proves to be a productive forum for both sides to gain better understanding of the challenges and explore collaboration opportunities. The discussions help reinforce the objectives of the GABBs  project, aiming to improve usability of spatial data and ease of data sharing and presentation.