Topic: NBN Gateway version 5.0 released

Release date: October 2013

The new version of the NBN Gateway has now been released.

Key new features include

Performance. This new version has been the result of a major rebuild of the site incorporating new technology, modern RESTful web services and hosting on more powerful servers. This will allow the NBN Gateway to cope with the increasing number of records into the foreseeable future.

Usability.  New access controls have been introduced so that “What you see is what you get”. This should help users clarify their level of download access. Users will need to log in to view or download record details and provide the reason for requesting access and downloading records. This will give dataset providers a clearer idea of who is using their records through the NBN Gateway and for what purpose the records are being used. Records are now downloaded into a single file rather than multiple text files. Downloading whole datasets, at the user’s level of access, is also now possible.

Flexibility. New access request and download forms have been introduced providing the ability to request and download records based on taxonomy, geographical area, year range, datasets and designated lists. Access requests can now include multiple datasets at a time and the administration pages have been redeveloped so that dataset providers can view the pending and granted access requests, for both users and organisations, across multiple datasets on one screen.
Searching. Technology has been updated to provide a more generic search facility and a new species information page incorporating a searchable taxonomic tree, species map at a national level, contributing datasets and list of the designations for the species.

Reporting. The grid map, site list for a species and site reports are based on updated technology. The interactive map tool has been redeveloped to display multiple species, designations, datasets, site and habitat boundaries and show records across multiple grid squares. The geographical extent of NBN Gateway has been expanded to include the Channel Islands.

The new version release does not include

SOAP based web services. This new version is based on REST services rather than the SOAP based web services as used in the old site. The old NBN Gateway will continue to support the users of the SOAP based web services to allow time to switch over to using the new REST services. Datasets and the species dictionary will however only be updated on the new and not on the old NBN Gateway.

Record Commenting. Record commenting will not initially be available on the new version. It is planned to include this functionality in a later release, along with more extensive and prominent functionality around improving data quality on the NBN Gateway.

Interactive Map Tool species lists. List of species for individual grid squares will not be initially available but can be incorporated into future releases of the Interactive Map Tool.

We would welcome any feedback, comments or suggestions on this new version of the NBN Gateway – please contact us on access@nbn.org.uk or through the NBN Forum.

Best wishes

NBN Technical Liaison Officer


Re: NBN Gateway version 5.0 released

Trying out the new NBN gateway, I have a question about lost information / functionality.

I manage 6 datasets added to the NBN Gateway, including one for Wicken Fen, which might well be the most species-rich dataset for a site in the UK.
BUT - the taxon comment column is no longer showing when you investigate the species data, and given the historical importance of many of the records, I think it is imperative that it can be seen (eg the comments may give information on how a species was sampled, on the Literature source, on old taxonomy/names).

Is the Comment info still present in the NBN? And if so, can it be acquired or displayed?

Also, the Search Function does not always work.
Eg it does not work for Browse Sites, Organisation Sites, National Trust sites in E & W.
eg try Wicken Fen, Orford Ness, Sutton Hoo, = nothing.


Re: NBN Gateway version 5.0 released

Hello Stuart

The comment field is one of the attributes fields within a dataset. It is not displayed but is present on downloading the records as long as the option to include attribute is ticked on the download form. A dataset can have many attribute fields and the issue is how to display them on the screen

It appears not all the sites with National Trust Properties in England and Wales site layer have been correctly transferred over to the new site, hence why the search functionality does not seem to be working for the mentioned sites. We will look into this

Best wishes

NBN Technical Liaison Officer


Re: NBN Gateway version 5.0 released

Thank you Graham, good to know that the taxon record comments are still available, and yes they all appeared OK when I did a test and ticked the Attributes box.
Perhaps the 'User How tos' page on Downloads could explain a little more clearly what is covered in Attributes (perhaps by adding a note to say 'Attributes may include Comments, Abundance, Sample methods, and other information on the species record'.  )?
(Its a bit technical otherwise).
As for the NT dataset - it seems only the early part of the alphabet has loaded!

5 (edited by Duke05 02-01-2016 11:46:09)

Re: NBN Gateway version 5.0 released

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Re: NBN Gateway version 5.0 released

How come the search function doesn't work?