MVACDF - a multivariate data format standard
The MVACDF (MultiVariate Analysis Common Data Form) was developed to hold data tables that hold the raw data for multivariate classification or calibration. When multivariate data are created and used, it is beneficial to use an open binary standard format that can be easily converted into an ASCII representation. Import of MVACDF files is today available in Simca-P from Umetrics and Unscrambler from CAMO.
The MVACDF format is based on the NetCDF binary file standard. On the uppermost level MVACDF is a set of rules of how to enter information into a NetCDF file. The MVACDF layer consists of a set of naming conventions for the data table and the associated attributes such as observation and variable names, observation times, multiple wavelength axes, additional text information, and extra matrices. The format handles missing variables. Each observation can be stored as a vector in the data table or as a 2-dimensional matrix. This means that e.g. images can be stored as observations in a straightforward way.
MVACDF files can be handled with any software that can be programmed to read and write a NetCDF file. To facilitate this process in a MS Windows environment, an OLE automation server was developed. This server consists of the server MVACDF.dll that has to be registered by e.g. regsvr32. The actual NetCDF routines are present in netcdf.dll. This file has to be present in the same directory as the MVACDF.dll. The OLE automation server has been tested thoroughly from Visual Basic, Delphi 4-6 and Labview. The binary files can be dumped to ascii format using e.g. ncdump.exe, that can be found from links at UCAR Unidata Program Center.
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