Bulk Upload

Overview

There are three phases for a basic bulk upload of data:

  1. Use the web interface

    • to enter metadata pertaining to your data set (new sites, species, cultivars, citations, or treatments);

    • to obtain a template appropriate for your data set.

  2. Fill in the template with your data. There are four templates to choose from:

    • yields.csv — Use this template if you are uploading yield data and you wish to specify the citation in the file by author, year, and title.

      If your data includes standard error and cultivar information and you do not plan to specify any of the required information interactively, you will be able to use this template “as-is”. Otherwise, you will need to delete one or more columns:

      1. If your data has no standard error information, delete both the SE and the n column.

      2. If your data set has a single uniform value for the site, species, cultivar, treatment, access_level, or date, then these values may be entered interactively through the web interface; in this case you should delete the corresponding column(s) from the template.

      3. Note that cultivar information can’t be specified interactively unless species information is as well; delete the cultivar column if and only if you either have no cultivar information or you are specifying both the species and the cultivar interactively.

    • yields_by_doi.csv — Use this template if you are uploading yield data and you wish to specify the citation in the file by doi.

      Again, if you do not have data for all of the columns listed in the template, or if you plan to specify some of the data interactively, you will have to delete one or more columns.

      You may also use this template if all of the data in your data set pertains to a single citation and you wish to specify that citation interactively. In this case, you must delete the citation_doi column.

    • traits.csv — Use this template if you are uploading trait data and you wish to specify the citation in the file by author, year, and title.

      This template must be modified before it can be used. In particular, the column headings [trait variable 1][trait variable n] must be replaced by actual variable names that exactly match names of variables in the database that have been marked to be recognized as trait variables. The number of these trait variable columns may need to be increased or decreased to accomodate the data set.

      Some trait variables allow or even require corresponding covariate information to be included. Again, the column headings [covariate 1][covariate n] must be changed to actual covariate variable names, and the number of these columns may need to be increased or decreased to match the available information. As with the yield data templates, some columns may also need to be deleted. For a list of recognized trait variable names and their corresponding required and optional covariates, visit the trait variable/covariates list at www.betydb.org. [TO-DO: Make this Web page.]

    • traits_by_doi.csv — As with the corresponding yield data template, use this template if you are uploading trait data and you wish to specify the citation in the file by doi or if you plan to specify the citation interactively (in which case delete the citation_doi column). Again, this template must be modified before it can be used.

  3. Use the web interface to upload your data set and insert it into

    the database.

In what follows, the term “field” always refers either to a column name used in the heading of the uploaded CSV file or to an entry in that column in some particular row of the file. On the other hand, and the term “column” may either refer to a column of data in the uploaded CSV file or to an attribute of a trait or yield datum in the traits or yields table of the database.

Detailed CSV Data File Specifications

Example of a template for bulk upload of yield data:

Required fields

  1. For yields uploads, the only required field is a yield column.

  2. For trait uploads, there must be at least one column whose label exactly matches the variable name for the trait value being specified. (Leading and trailing spaces are permitted, but letter case must exactly match the name of the variable specified in the database.) If this trait variable has any required covariates, columns for these covariates must be included.

Information that is required but that may be specified interactively for the entire dataset.

Data values may be specified interactively only if there is a single value that pertains to the whole data set.

Information that references existing database entries

  1. Citation

    • If only one citation for the entire dataset exists, it may be specified interactively by choosing a citation on the citations page instead of including citation information in the CSV file.

    • Otherwise, specify the citation in the CSV file, either by doi or by author, year, and title.

    • If a DOI is available for all citations in the data set, the citation corresponding to each row may be specified in a citation_doi column. In this case, the citation_author, citation_year, and citation_title columns must not be in the column heading list. (If such information is already included in the data set, to keep such columns for purely informational purposes, the string -ignore may be appended to each of these headings. One might want to do this, for example, to keep a visual record of the author, year, and title even when it is the citation doi that is being used to determine how the data will associated with a citation in the database.) Each value in the citation_doi column must exactly match the doi attribute of some row in the citations table except that letter case and leading and trailing spaces are ignored.

    • Conversely, if a DOI is not available for all citations in the data set, or if it is preferred to specify the citation by author, year, and title, then the citation_doi column should not be included and the columns citation_author, citation_year, and citation_title must all be present. (Again, if some DOI information is already included and you wish to retain it for purely informational purposes, simply give the column some descriptive name other than citation_doi and it will be ignored by the upload code.)

  2. Site

    • If all of the data in the data set pertains to a single site, that site may be specified interactively.

    • Otherwise, a site column is required. The value must match an existing sitename column value in the sites table of the database. (Letter case, leading and trailing spaces, and extra internal spaces are ignored when searching for a match.)

  3. Species

    • If all of the data in the data set pertains to a single species, that species may be specified interactively.

    • Otherwise, the species column is required. The value must match an existing scientificname column value in the species table of the database. (Again, letter case, leading and trailing spaces, and extra internal spaces are ignored when searching for a match.)

  4. Treatment

    • If a single treatment and a single citation applies to all of the data in the data set, the treatment may be specified interactively provided that the citation is specified interactively as well.

    • Otherwise, a treatment column is required. The value must match an existing name column value in the treatments table of the database; moreover, this matching treatment must be consistent with the specified citation. (Again, letter case, leading and trailing spaces, and extra internal spaces are ignored when searching for a match.)

Other information that may be specified interactively

  1. Date

    • If a single date applies to all of the data in the data set, the date may be specified interactively.

    • Otherwise, a date column is required.

    • Date values must be in the form YYYY-MM-DD. For example, July 25, 2003 must be entered as “2003-07-25”. (Eventually, month and day may become optional, in which case any of the forms “2003-07-25”, “2003-07”, and “2003” would represent dates of varying degrees of specificity. Note that uploading dateloc, time, and timeloc information is not supported.)

  2. Rounding

    • The amount of rounding for numerical data can only be specified interactively. Any value from 1 to 4 significant digits may be chosen. The amount of rounding for the standard error SE (if present) may be specified separately from the amount of rounding for yield and for trait variables and their covariates.

    • By default, all numerical data is rounded to three significant digits. For example, with this default in place, 999.1 will be rounded to 999 and 1001.1 will be rounded to 1000.

Numerical Data (This is never specified interactively.)

Data for Yields

  1. Yield

    Every yield data upload file must have a yield column. The data in this column must always be a parsable non-negative number and must never be blank. Scientific notation is not currently supported. As noted above, the number given in the file is subject to rounding before being inserted into the database.

  2. Sample Size

    An n column is required if and only if an SE column is included. The value must always be an integer greater than 1.

  3. Standard Error

    An SE column is required if and only if an n column is included; this datum will be inserted into the stat column of the yields table, and the statname column value will be set to “SE”.

Data for Traits

  1. Trait variable values

    • Every trait data upload file must have at least one column whose heading matches the name of some recognized trait variable. A list of recognized trait variables is listed on the BetyDB web site. If multiple trait variable columns are used, each row in the CSV file will produce one row in the traits table for each trait variable column. (These resulting rows will be effectively grouped by assigning them a unique entity id. Said another way, there is a one-to-one correspondence between rows in the CSV file and resultant rows in the entities table, the table that keeps track of this grouping.) As with yield numbers, the data in this column must always be a parsable number and is subject to rounding before being inserted into the database. In addition, it must conform to any range restrictions on the value of the variable.

    • The template for traits uploads provides dummy column headings [trait variable 1], [trait variable 2], etc., which must be changed to actual variable names before data can be uploaded.

  2. Covariate values

    • If any of the included trait variables has a required covariate, there must be a column corresponding to that covariate.

    • For any of the included trait variables that has an optional covariate, a column corresponding to that covariate may be included.

    • The template for traits uploads provides dummy column headings [covariate 1], [covariate 2], etc., which must be changed to actual variable names before data can be uploaded.

  3. Sample Size and Standard Error

    An SE column is required if and only if an n column is included; this datum will be inserted into the stat column of the traits table, and the statname column value will be set to “SE”. Note that if you have more than one trait variable column, each trait will get the same values of n and SE. There is currently no way to use different sample size and standard error values for different trait variables. Also, the n and SE values for any associated covariates will be set to NULL. (Eventually, we may enable associating differing values of n and SE to different trait variables and covariates. In this case, we might add columns [trait variable 1] n and [trait variable 1] SE, etc. or [covariate 1] n and [covariate 1] SE, prefixing the usual column heading with a variable name to indicate which variable the sample size and standard error value is to be associated with.)

    Again, values of n must be at least 2, and columns for n and SE must both be present or both be absent.

Optional data

  1. Sample Size and Standard Error

    As noted above, these are both optional, but if one of these is included, the other must be included as well. In other words, the column heading list must include both of n and SE (or, in the case of traits, [trait or covariate variable k] n and [trait or covariate variable k] SE) or neither. Note that if n and SE are not given fields of the uploaded CSV file, the value of the n column of the traits or yields table will default to 1 and the stat and statname column values will default to NULL.

  2. Cultivar

    • If a uniform value for the species is provided interactively when uploading the data set, the cultivar may be specified this way as well, provided that it also has a uniform value for the whole data set.

    • Otherwise, to include cultivar information in the upload file, both a species and a cultivar column must be included. The values in the cultivar column are allowed to be blank (in which case a value of NULL is inserted into the cultivar_id column for the given row); but if provided, the value must match the value of the name column in some row of the cultivars table, and moreover, this row must be a row associated with the species corresponding to the value given in the species column. Again, matching is case insensitive, and leading, trailing, and excess internal whitespace is ignored.

  3. Notes

    To include notes, use a notes column. There is no restriction on what can be included in this column, but leading and trailing space will be stripped before insertion into the database. Non-ascii characters entered in the file in UTF-8 encoding are allowed. If there is no notes column, each row inserted into the traits or yields table will use the empty string as the value for the notes column.