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Citation. Zinnel, K. C.; Marozas, M. F. 1986. Computer data entry techniques used in scientific applications. Pages 61-72 in Michner, W. K., editor. Research Data Management in the Ecological Sciences. Belle W. Baruch Library in Marine Science, No. 16, University of South Carolina Press. [1226 LTER]
Abstract. Prolific data production by the Long-Term Ecological Research (LTER) program has demonstrated that the critical path for analysis and interpretation of biological phenomena involves the initial step of converting observers' measurements of the environment to a machine-readable format. A historical perspective describes the evolution of current data entry procedures used by LTER sites and emphasizes where new techniques allowed the assimilation of additional LTER data sets. Recent electronic technology has made it cost effective to minimize, and potentially eliminate, human involvement in data entry procedures. Critical factors to be considered when making decisions regarding technological advances in data entry are discussed within the framework of a scientific research organization.