ASTM International Subcommittee E13.15 on Analytical Data is currently working on a proposed new standard, WK6371, Analytical Information Markup Language (AnIML). Subcommittee E13.15 is under the jurisdiction of Committee E13 on Molecular Spectroscopy and Separation Science. AnIML is a markup language for describing analytical chemistry result data and metadata that can be used for data interchange and data archiving.
“AnIML is an attempt to standardize the way analytical chemistry result data are identified and organized in electronic formats,” says Gary Kramer, leader of the biospectroscopy group in the biochemical science division of the chemical science and technology laboratory at National Institute for Science and Technology. “The idea is to create a language that tags analytical chemistry data elements so that they can be read, written, organized, and utilized in a non-proprietary, platform-independent, network friendly manner.” Kramer also notes that, while the subcommittee began work with the notion that AnIML would be primarily useful for data interchange, the idea of what the standard can do has been expanded to include data archiving as well.
According to Kramer, many people will be able to use AnIML. “We envision that anyone utilizing analytical data for nearly any purpose will be users of AnIML,” says Kramer. “This includes folks who generate such data and need to exchange or preserve it, such as laboratories or corporations, those who collect and organize analytical data in libraries of chemical properties or spectra, those who publish chemical data in either electronic or paper form and those who just need a simple way to look at data without using proprietary, training-intensive or expensive software applications.”
Although the subcommittee has been at work on the AnIML standard for several years, participation from any interested stakeholders is still welcome. “Many choices for how to proceed have already been made but there is still a lot of work to do and ample opportunity for anyone wanting to contribute to leave his or her fingerprints on AnIML,” says Kramer.
Further information on AnIML, including presentations, publications and meeting minutes, can be found on the Web at animl.sourceforge.net.
For further technical information on WK6371, contact Gary Kramer, NIST, Gaithersburg, Md. (phone: 301/975-4132; firstname.lastname@example.org). Committee E13 will meet Nov. 13, in conjunction with the Eastern Analytical Symposium in Somerset, N.J. For membership or meeting details, contact Joe Koury (phone: 610/832-9804; email@example.com).