nearly ready for Gaia DR1

I got obsessed on the weekend, and even more today, with the problem of getting the Gaia DR1 data in the form of a complete flat file, on Wednesday morning (that is, in two days) when the data release happens. Various sources have told us that we can't get a flat file, we have to do thousands to hundreds of thousands of remote database queries! In my fury about this, I tweeted (yes, twittered) at Jos de Bruijne (ESTEC), who promised me that the flat file would be available at the ESA Archive right away. Whew!

I decided that everyone on my team who is thinking about Gaia needs to figure out, today or tomorrow, what plot are they going to make? with the new data. That is, it is too big to think What science question am I going to ask?, so we should ask the simpler question about the plot / figure. I will send email to everyone about this tomorrow. I also noted the release in an email out to the #GaiaSprint participants.

In unrelated news, Andy Casey (Cambridge) and I discussed what we need to do to get ready for SDSS-IV APOGEE2 DR14. As my loyal reader knows, we are providing value-added content to DR14 using The Cannon. We worked out what our minimum deliverable is, what inputs and outputs that entails, what script writing that entails, and left it with Casey to communicate all that. We might deliver more than the minimum, but we want to only promise the minimum.


  1. Hi, at Groningen (Kapteyn Institute) we plan to host a single file for DR1, it will be a (column based) hdf5 file that can be used with http://vaex.astro.rug.nl/ (I'm the author), but can also be used to convert if to fits if that suits you better.

    1. Awesome! Tweet the link to me when you have it.