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Tool: SDSS Query Analyzer (sdssQA) Download
Tool: SDSS Command-Line SQL tool (sqlcl) Download
Tool: GalaxyExplorer: a 3D visualization tool Download
Paper: The SDSS SkyServer– Public Access to the SDSS Data Download
Paper: Designing and Mining Multi-Terabyte Astronomy Archives... Download



SDSS Query Analyzer

Author: Nolan Li & Tanu Malik, JHU
Date: January 2003

sdssQA is a GUI SQL query tool to help compose SQL queries. It was inspired by the SQL Server Query Analyzer, but runs as a Java application on UNIX, Macintosh, and Windows clients and is freely available from this web site. It connects via ODBC/JDBC (for local use) and via HTTP or SOAP for use over the Internet.

Download sdssQA

Command-Line SQL Tool

Author: Tamas Budavari, JHU
Date: April 2003

sqlcl is a command-line SQL query tool to help compose SQL queries. It is a simple tool written in Python that let's you submit queries with the minimum of fuss.

Download sqlcl

GalaxyExplorer: a 3D visualization tool

Author: Szalay, Tamas
Date: Jan 2002

This tool enables an interactive, video game-like fly through of the 3D galaxy distribution in the Sloan Digital Sky Survey. This tool runs under Windows, requires DirectX8.0 or higher, and a graphics card supporting 3D.

Download GalaxyExplorer

The SDSS SkyServer – Public Access to the Sloan Digital Sky Survey Data

Author: Szalay, Alexander ; Gray, Jim ; Thakar, Ani ; Kunszt, Peter Z. ; Malik, Tanu ;
             Raddick, Jordan ; Stoughton, Christopher ; VandenBerg, Jan
Date: November 2001

The SkyServer provides Internet access to the public Sloan Digital Sky Survey (SDSS) data for both astronomers and for science education. This paper describes the SkyServer goals and architecture. It also describes our experience operating the SkyServer on the Internet. The SDSS data is public and well-documented so it makes a good test platform for research on database algorithms and performance. This appeared as a Microsoft Technical Report, MS-TR-2001-104.

Download MS-TR-2001-104

Designing and Mining Multi-Terabyte Astronomy Archives: The Sloan Digital Sky Survey

Author: Szalay, Alexander S. ; Kunszt, Peter ; Thakar, Ani ; Gray, Jim ; Slutz, Donald ; Brunner, Robert J.
Date: June 1999 (revised February 2000)

The archive will enable astronomers to explore the data interactively. Data access will be aided by multidimensional spatial and attribute indices. The data will be partitioned in many ways. Small tag objects consisting of the most popular attributes will accelerate frequent searches. Splitting the data among multiple servers will allow parallel, scalable I/O and parallel data analysis. Hashing techniques will allow efficient clustering, and pair-wise comparison algorithms that should parallelize nicely. Randomly sampled subsets will allow debugging otherwise large queries at the desktop. Central servers will operate a data pump to support sweep searches touching most of the data. The anticipated queries will require special operators related to angular distances and complex similarity tests of object properties, like shapes, colors, velocity vectors, or temporal behaviors. These issues pose interesting data management challenges.

The paper describes our vision for the SkyServer, dated about a year before we started to build the production system. This appeared as a Microsoft Technical Report, MS-TR-99-30.

Download MS-TR-99-30