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SOILx is a database of soil sites. It displays groups of them on a map or as the results of a search. You can access the individual sites from either of these displays. This tutorial shows you how.

Map

map
To view a map of all SOILx sites, navigate to the Map page. This page displays a Google map of all soil sites in the database. Individual sites are shown as clickable points on the map. The map automatically zooms to show all soil sites, but you can drag it around or zoom in to view clustered points.

To access an individual site, click on one of the pins. A popup window will appear with some basic information for that site. Click the linked text at the top of the popup window and you’ll be taken to the individual soil site page!

You can also filter the sites on the map by different categories, such as Soil Order, Ecosystem, etc. by selecting the appropriate “Quick Filter” drop down menu(s) at the top of the map, and then clicking the “Search” button.

Search

search
To search for a subset of SOILx soil sites, navigate to the Search page. You’ll see a page with more search fields than you would typically need. Enter whatever information you’d like to search or filter your results by and click the “Search” button. You’ll be taken to the Search Results page. (Click the “Reset” button to reset all search fields to blank).

The Search Results page displays results in map and list form. You can access the same sites from either the map or the list. Access soil sites on the map the same way as on the map page. Access soil sites on the list by clicking on the linked text of each soil site.

Note

SOILx is still in a development phase. If you filter your search by too many categories, you may end up with zero results. It’s best to filter by one or two categories.

For keyword searches (fields labeled with “keyword” next to them), it is very important that you only enter one word or one part of a word. SOILx can only search for one term at a time. For example, a search for “Bois or UBC” in the “Place Name” field will return nothing. You have to search for Lac du Bois and UBC place names in two separate searches.

Be careful when searching for a value of “0” (for example, soil sites with elevations between “0” and “400”) – not all soil sites have all their information properly entered. If a field is blank, it may show up in your results even if it doesn’t belong and isn’t wanted!

A Useful Trick

When you find a search that yields particularly interesting results (for example, if you’re a teacher and you want your students to only view soil sites for a particular class), you can save the web address of the results of that search to share by email, reference, or syllabus:

http://ar-soilweb.sites.olt.ubc.ca/results/?soil_order=&great_group=&ecosystem=&bc_biogeoclimatic_zone=&climate_zone=&soil_texture_diag=&parent_material=&primary_soil_process_gro=&place_name=&city=&region=&country=&degrees=2&latitude=49&longitude=&min_ele=100&max_ele=300&courses=&universities=&featured_expert=&source_name=

This example web address displays only results within 2 degrees of 49 degrees latitude, with elevation between 100 and 300 meters. If you’re particularly adept with web addresses, you can shorten this address by stripping out the search terms that don’t have any value:

http://ar-soilweb.sites.olt.ubc.ca/results/?degrees=2&latitude=49&longitude=&min_ele=100&max_ele=300

This web address displays the same results in a lot less space. (We could make it even shorter by stripping out the search term “longitude” by deleting “&longitude=” if we wanted.)

SOILx is a platform for soil data from almost any source. If you have good quality data for soil sites that you would like to contribute to SOILx, download this Excel file:

SOILx_Upload_Template

Please fill the fields in the template for your soil sites according to the guidelines included the document. You must fill out the required fields in order for the site to be added to the database: Site Name, Latitude, and Longitude. All other fields are optional, but be careful – leaving fields blank may make it harder for learners to find your site. Please include as much verified detail as possible.

If you want to embed a YouTube video, please follow the supplied URL format precisely or the video won’t display. If you want to embed your own images (or those for which you have copyright) or link to a pdf file, you can either put the URL at which you host them into the appropriate column(s) in the Excel file or you can email them with the file to Dr. Maja Krzic (maja.krzic@ubc.ca).

SOILx has two layers:

  1. A Google Fusion Tables database that stores SOILx data in the cloud, and
  2. a website that displays SOILx data in aggregate (in maps and lists) and individually, using a WordPress platform hosted by UBC’s CMS team. Data is retrieved and pages are generated dynamically.

You can view and download the raw Fusion Tables data (as a .csv file) here:

https://www.google.com/fusiontables/data?docid=1HGHJ4NcEA9c2MMQgFEF-gIvRpjqGeuke126Q4nU