Summary of activities July 2016 - Sep 2016

WP1 - Management

  • Second payment after justification received and sent to the partners.
  • Budget from CSIC cleared and payment reimbursed.
  • Minor adjustment in budget by Univ. Bristol accepted by the PO.

  • X. Luri and A. Brown actively participated in the coordination of the Gaia Data Release 1 (DR1) that took place on the 14th September 2016. A. Brown was one of the speakers at the DR1 press conference:

WP2 - User community

  • For the DR1, WP2 has ensured that the archive has been tailored to the actual user needs
    • User requirements gathering for the archive design
    • User requirements implementation verification
    • Coordination of the archive beta-testing
  • For collaboration of other astrometry mission (JASMINE), we have discussion on Small-JASMINE calibration with European partner, Michael Biermann and Wolfgang Loeffler, AIR at National Astronomical Observatory of Japan during 2nd to 4th Aug.
  • Further development of the BEANS software. The revision for the reviewer's report of the paper about BEANS has been submitted to MNRAS (Hypki).
  • Work on the deliverable D2.9 "Requirements specification for model comparison and optimization tools". The document is being prepared on the basis of examples which compare Gaia archive and a numerical simulation of the Milky-Way like galaxy within the BEANS software (Hypki).

WP3 - System design

T3.1 Technical Coordination

N Hambly continued to coordinate between GENIUS WPs 3 and Gaia CU9 WPs 920 (documentation), 930 (system architecture), 973 (data mining) and 974 (cross match infrastructure).

T3.2 Aspects of archive interface design

  • For the DR1, WP3 has contributed to the robustness of the archive design
    • Contribution to the definition of the archive data model
    • Coordinated review of end-user Data Model documentation, including VO UCD1+ content, between DPAC CU9, ESAC and ESAC-SDC
    • Enhancements to DPAC MDB Dictionary Tool in support of published catalogue Data Model
    • Bug fixing and enhancements to ADQL parser (as employed within Gaia archive)
    • Testing of ADQL interface and provision of example queries

T3.3 VO infrastructure

SW contributions made available via GitHub (note acknowledgement of EC FP7 funding at the bottom of these pages!):

Pyrothorn - Testing suite for Firethorn, TAP, SQLServer, DQP & Deployment Scripts

TAP Autocomplete - Javascript Autocomplete library for TAP, to be used by GACS

Taplib (Fork of Gregory's code) - Enhancements, Bug Fixes and Modifications to ADQL Parser needed for Firethorn & the Genius demonstrator

T3.4 Data Centre collaboration

S. Voutsinas visited E-SDC to integrate the ADQL autocomplete facility into GACS (5-8 July 2016). GWT library further enhanced for functions requested by E-SDC. Outcomes: Both sides understood what modifications would be required on each side to support this. Work was done on this during and after the trip and an integrated template is available which they are testing and plan on adding very soon.

T3.5 Data mining environments

First draft of Docker paper completed ( dockerpaper.pdf).

WP4 - Data Exploitation

T4.2 - Visualization

T4.3 - Data Mining

T4.4 - VO tools and services

  • Present poster "All of the Sky: HEALPix Density Maps of Gaia-scale Datasets from the Database to the Desktop" at ADASS XXVI conference, Trieste 16-20 Oct 2016 (M.Taylor et al.)

WP5 - Validation

  • For the Gaia DR1, WP5 has made a strong contribution to the validation of the Gaia DR1 data:
    • implement general sanity checks on the fields of the Catalogue
    • check the accuracy and precision of the Catalogue parameters
    • verify the correct distribution of these parameters, in particular the absence of large numbers of outliers
    • study the completeness of the Catalogue
    • detect as much as possible instrumental or data processing problems
    • and more generally check what would not be covered by the internal CU verifications, i.e., in particular, cross-CU checks.
  • Most of the work during this period has been devoted to writing the release documentation and the submitted paper

T5.1 - Technical coordination

  • For the validation results, coordination of ~60 pages in the catalogue written by the WP leaders, documenting the validations methods and findings. We tried to assess in particular as much as possible the level of precision and of systematics in the astrometry and photometry, and the completeness of the catalogue, thanks to all tests which have successfully run.
  • A paper has been submitted to Astronomy & Astrophysics with all these results.
  • K. Findeisen, GENIUS post-doc, after having done a considerable work in T5.2, has left the project to work on LSST.
  • New recruitement is being attempted

T5.2 - Definition of problem cases, validation scenarios and tools

  • As for the content, the pre-DR1 data received was filtered from:
    • 164 446 sources with inconsistent G-BP vs G-RP colours
    • 746 292 sources with less than 10 observations, producing wrong G magnitudes
    • 37 433 092 duplicate sources and 35 951 041 sources were flagged as duplicated sources.

T5.3 - Simulation versus reality: from models to observables

  • A new GOG simulation is now being used

T5.4 - Confronting Gaia to external archives

  • L. Ruiz-Dern has finished her manuscript and preparing for defense of her PhD mostly related to the tests developed in T5.4

T5.5 - Data demining: outlier analysis

  • Work done for DR1 has been documented

T5.6 - Transversal tools for special objects

  • Solar system objects: work is being prepared for DR2

WP6 - Support

  • For the Gaia DR1, WP6 has provided:
    • Provision of two large simulations of DR1 for system tests and validation of DR1 software
    • Contribution to the science alerts system
    • Implementation and support of the community portal (Gaiaverse)

T6.2-Simulated Catalogue

T6.3-Science Alerts testbed

WP7 - Dissemination

T7.1 - Coordination of dissemination activities

Coordination tasks involved some phone calls with Eduard to organize the dissemination plan via Twitter and the Gaiaverse portal, with especial emphasis on Gaia-DR1. In total, from July-September 2016, 6 hours are recorded under the "coordination" label, in which the following activities have been taken into account:

  • New menu structure for Gaiaverse
  • Eduard expressed interest on adding Euskera on Gaiaverse.
  • Structure of new pages related to DR1 and selection of contents.
  • Preparation of the portal to make the catalogue available from the homepage.
  • Brainstorming of particular actions to cover the DR1 launch on September 14th.

T7.2 - Community portal infrastructure

In order to prepare the portal for the first Gaia Mission catalogue, a new menu and submenu structure has been added on Gaiaverse. It is "The Gaia Mission", having the following submenu options:


These pages have been all translated into 9 of the 12 languages available up to this moment on Gaiaverse: English, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Catalan, Slovene, Croatian and Portuguese.

We've been working on adding Euskera into the platform as a new language as well. It is not complete yet, but for its preparation we needed the translation of 26 words, 16 sentences and 10 mini texts, plus the "About Us" description and other news considered of interest.

In total, by the end of September 2016 Gaiaverse already has 13 languages.

While preparing the portal for this DR1, some other modifications have been introduced:

  • featured news on the homepage
  • menu adjustment, as the incorporation of new pages (Gaia DR1) forced others to jump into a 2nd line. The problem has been fixed successfully.
  • introduction of improvements on the "Filter" button in Resources.
  • new field in Tools to make the incorporation of a new link available.

T7.3 - Community portal, outreach and academic activities

From July-September 2016, 2,074 sessions have been initiated on Gaiaverse by more than 1,400 users (32.9% were returning visitors and 67.1% were new visitors). They have visited more than 6,800 pages, which is an average of 3.31 pages per session and approximately 03:44 minutes per session. Compared to the previous period (April-June 2016), Gaiaverse’s bounce rate has decreased from 71% to 56.85%, indicating that visitors got more attracted by the portal content. The launch of the first Gaia Data catalogue is surely linked to this rising interest on the portal’s content, which led visitors to spend more time on it.

This is illustrated with the top ten most visited pages. As usually, the homepage is at the top, but for the first time the second position is occupied by a page which is not the home: the Gaia Data Release 1 (DR1). Resources rank third.

The same pattern is followed by landing pages, understood as those pages a user arrives at after clicking a hyperlink. Once again, the homepage ranks first, followed by the DR1 in different languages (English, French, German, etc.).

Spain, USA and UK are the three countries with more sessions initiated on Gaiaverse. Accordingly, English and Spanish are the preferred languages on Gaiaverse (45.67% and 11.33% respectively); even if German and French have important percentages as well (5.97% and 4.39% respectively).

Regarding traffic on Gaiaverse during July-September 2016:

  • Organic search: 36.16%
  • Referral: 29.17%
  • Direct: 25.17%
  • Social: 9.50%
Taking the social traffic (9.50% of the total), 84.77% came from Twitter and 15.23% from Facebook.

From July 2016 - September 2016, Twitter numbers are listed below:

  • July 16: tweets (5), tweet impressions (5,656), profile visits (753), mentions (22), new followers (15), total number of followers in July 2016 (363).
  • August 16: tweets (1), tweet impressions (1,314), profile visits (91), mentions (1), new followers (2), total number of followers in August 2016 (365).
  • September 16: tweets (34), tweet impressions (22.1K), profile visits (1,274), mentions (23), new followers (41), total number of followers in September 2016 (406).
First Gaia Data Release

It is worth mentioning that September has been a great month in regards to visibility thanks to the release of the first Gaia data catalogue, that in terms of dissemination, represented:

  • For the Gaia DR1, outreach material was produced:
    • A video, used to promote the data release (even by ESA itself):: Notice the GENIUS credits all around and the proper credits to GENIUS/FP7 at the end.
    • The all-sky image that has become the icon of the data release is here: It was created and conceived by André Moitinho (GENIUS Portugal partner) and Márcia Barros (GENIUS fellow).
    • The GENIUS Gaiaverse site has been a node for multilingual, multicountry dissemination of the data release (available in 12 languages)
    • community portal (multilingual, 12 languages; currently working on an Euskera version to be added). Social networks and news distribution.
In the first 24 hours (14-15 Sept.) the impact of Gaiaverse on the DR1 release has been as follows:
  • Twitter account:
    • 10.4K impressions, described as the delivery of a post or tweet to an account's Twitter stream. We earned 5.2K impressions per day. The more impressions we get, the more visibility the post has.
    • 1.9% engagement rate
    • 82 link clicks (on average, we earned 41 link clicks per day)
    • 69 retweets (on average, we earned 35 Retweets per day)
    • 58 likes (on average, we earned 29 likes per day)
    • 32 new followers in 24 hours

  • Gaiaverse website:
    • From Sept. 14 to Sept. 15, the website got 420 sessions initated by more than 350 users, of which 22.6% were returning visitors and 77.4% were new visitors. They've visited more than 1,000 pages (1,071 to be exact), that is an average of 2.55 pages per session. Globally, its bounce rate has been of 55.33%, that compared to the usual 60-65% means that a large percentage of users were engaged with the website's content without leaving it too early.
    • The homepage in its English version has been the most visited page (249 views), followed by the one dedicated to the DR1 in English (2nd, having 71 views) and German (3rd, with 65 views).
    • Being Gaiaverse a multilingual portal it is also interesting to see from which country did Gaiaverse receive more visitors during the DR1 release. Here's the top five:
      • USA
      • Germany
      • UK
      • Spain
      • Slovenia
    • Overall, sessions on Gaiaverse were distributed as follows during these hours:
      • Organic search (38.10%)
      • Referral (33.10%)
      • Direct (19.05%)
      • Social (9.76%)

  • Social networks such as Twitter and Facebook contributed to increase sessions on Gaiaverse as well. Of the 41 sessions via social referral (this 9.76%), 23 came from Facebook (56.10%) and 18 from Twitter (43.90%).
Topic attachments
I Attachment History Action Size Date Who Comment
JPEGJPG Overview_JulySept2016.JPG r1 manage 57.0 K 2016-11-23 - 10:25 TeresaVia Gaiaverse overview July-Sept. 2016
PDFpdf SmallJASMINE-Calibration.pdf r1 manage 4910.6 K 2016-10-21 - 23:23 YoshiyukiYamada Output of 2nd to 4th Aug meating at NAOJ.
JPEGJPG countries_JulySept2016.JPG r1 manage 37.4 K 2016-11-23 - 10:27 TeresaVia Countries on Gaiaverse July-Sept. 2016
PDFpdf dockerpaper.pdf r1 manage 510.4 K 2016-10-25 - 14:42 NigelHambly First draft
PDFpdf minutes.pdf r1 manage 32.0 K 2016-10-21 - 23:23 YoshiyukiYamada Output of 2nd to 4th Aug meating at NAOJ.
PNGpng new_menu_structure.png r1 manage 14.3 K 2016-11-23 - 11:36 TeresaVia New menu structure on Gaiaverse
JPEGJPG traffic_JulySept2016.JPG r1 manage 26.2 K 2016-11-23 - 10:26 TeresaVia Gaiaverse traffic July-Sept. 2016
JPEGJPG visitedpages_JulySept2016.JPG r1 manage 46.9 K 2016-11-23 - 10:26 TeresaVia Most visited pages July-Sept. 2016
Topic revision: r16 - 2017-03-06 - MarkTaylor
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