Humans have an inherent desire to collect and categorize. This desire manifested in a movement starting around 1600 in Europe to collect objects and present them in ways to insight wonder about the natural world. These collections were called Cabinets of Curiosities or Wonder Rooms. It is thought that these collections are the origin of natural history museums today. The word cabinet in Cabinets of Curiosities literally refers to the furniture that housed these collections. And while the vessel that housed these collections evolved through time from cabinets to rooms and eventually museums, we have begun to see the newest incarnation - the database.
Digitizing and curating datasets has been a major priority for many institutions in the past 20 years and through these initiatives many large silos of data have been built relating to geology, biodiversity, ecology, and our global environment. We want to explore these databases, tools, the people who built them. We also hope that these posts aid in helping others interact with the data and develop their own questions.
We hope you enjoy reading about our desire to collect and categorize the world around us and please point us in the direction of all the cool data.