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Frequently Asked Questions

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  1. How do I provide feedback?

    Your feedback is welcome and appreciated. You can provide feedback by completing the following steps:

    1. Click the feedback button at the bottom right-hand side of the screen. A new screen opens.
    2. Fill out the form with your feedback or ideas.
    3. Click Post idea.

    Optionally, you can view other users' feedback as well as vote for the ones that you agree with or add additional comments to them.

  2. What do the site icons mean?

    The following table includes descriptions and definitions of the main icons that can be found in data.fao.org.  You can find more detailed information about each item in the glossary section.

    Icon Description Summary
      Statistics Section of data.fao.org that refers to numerical data and metadata.  For example: crop yields
      Maps Spatial representation of data. For example: regions, boundaries, cities
      Documents Textual information including reports, articles, papers, yearbooks, brochures, booklets, and so on.
      Pictures Refers to images, photographs and illustrations. For example: pictures of fish, illustration of harvesting techniques
      Database A database is an organized set of data that is commonly presented to users through a website or publication.  For example: FAOSTAT, AGRO-MAPS
      Dataset A container for statistics that share a common structure, workflow, visibility and release schedule.  For example: FAOSTAT Production Crops
      Dimension A data element that categorizes each entry in a dataset into non-overlapping regions. A dimension provides the means to break data down into smaller parts in order to better understand it.  For example, 'customer', 'date' and 'product' when applied as dimensions to a sales receipt.
      Dimension Member A possible value of a dimension. For example, the 'wheat' could be a dimension member for the dimension 'crops'.
      Measure A measure is a property on which calculations can be made using precomputed aggregates. For example: sum, count, average, minimum, maximum
      Topics A navigation menu item that organizes available data by offical FAO category, for example, Animal Production and Health.
      Tags A descriptive word or phrase applied to a object, such as a document or photo, as a way to identify it.
      Places A navigation menu within data.fao.org that organizes available data by geographic location, for example, by continent or agricultural zone.
      Catalogue A list of the available databases and datasets in data.fao.org.
      Search Provides you with the ability to find information based on key words or terms. Search can also provide filters, for example, French or English.
      Date The time period when a transaction is recorded. For example, the date created, date received, or date modified.
  3. What databases or datasets are currently available?

    You can view the list of databases and datasets that are currently available in data.fao.org using the following link: /catalogue

    Development chose to load these preliminary databases and datasets based on the following criteria:

    - The database or dataset provided a good cross-representation of the different types available at FAO.
    - Different sized databases or datasets including larger ones and smaller ones.
    - The database or dataset provided good synergy with our current work program.
    - The database or dataset had technical affinity that provided an ease of integration.
  4. What are the features that are planned for future releases?

    There are several data.fao.org features that are in-plan but not yet available for use. The following features will be available in the future:

    - Viewing or searching for pictures, maps, and documents. The only data that is currently available deals with statistics.
    - Embedding widgets on blogs. This functionality is not currently available outside of FAO but can be used for testing purposes within the FAO network.
    - Using site social features. This involves the ability to add a link directly from the site to your facebook page or a tweet to your twitter account. The links are currently active but since data.fao.org is currently not publicly available, the URLs will not be accessible via an internet site such as facebook or twitter.
    - The following search features:
    - The ability to filter search results by date.
    - Some geographical dimensions.
    - Searching for pictures, maps, and documents.
    - RoamBI
    - Data ownership information
    - Comments
    - Counts of how many times data has been downloaded or viewed
    - Translations into the other FAO official languages. Currently, only English is available.
    - The ability to vote (+1) an item
    - Dimension members
    - Permanent citation links
    - My Profile
    - Charts
  5. What are the release details?

    This is a preview release of the data.fao.org website. It focuses on statistics with limited datasets without strict criteria for how they interact and fit together. It serves as a proof of concept. Feedback is encouraged and welcome.

    For site optimization, it is recommended that you use on the following browsers:

    - Firefox - all recent versions
    - Chrome - all recent versions
    - Internet Explorer - v7 and later

    The website will work on all major devices and browsers, including smart phones and tablets.

    For additional release details, go to Release info.

  6. How do I share landing pages?

    A landing page is a main article that displays information specific to a topic, place, data set, or dimension. To share landing pages, perform the following steps:

    1. Open the landing page that you want to share, for example, Kenya. There are multiple ways to access country landing pages in data.fao.org:
    - Using the main search area. For example, type Kenya and press the enter key.
    - Using the site navigation bar. For example, on the site navigation bar, click Places. Then click K > Kenya.
    - Using the 'Countries' search area on the home page.
    2. Click Share.
    A menu appears with the option to email the landing page link to others or share the link via social networking sites, such as, facebook or twitter.
  7. How do I download a dataset?

    To download a dataset, perform the following steps:

    1. Open the dataset that you want to download, for example, Crops, National Production. There are multiple ways to access datasets in data.fao.org:
    - Using the main search area. For example, type Crops, National Production and press the enter key.
    - Using the site navigation bar. For example, on the site navigation bar, click Catalog. Then click C > Crops, Nation Production (FAOSTAT).
    2. Click Download. The 'Download Manager' dialog box appears.
    3. In the 'Download Manager' dialog box, choose the format in which you would like to download the data and click Download. For example, Dataset CSV Downloads.
    4. In the dialog box that opens, select to open the file in Microsoft Excel or save the file.
  8. How do I cite a dataset?

    data.fao.org provides you with dataset citations in different formats that include permanent links to those datasets. You can also export to the EndNote or Mendely reference tools. To cite a dataset, perform the following steps:

    1. Open the dataset that you want to cite, for example, Crops, Subnational Production. There are multiple ways to access datasets in data.fao.org:
    - Using the main search area. For example, type Crops, Subnational Production and press the enter key.
    - Using the site navigation bar. For example, on the site navigation bar, click Catalog. Then click C > Crops, Subnational Production (Agro-MAPS).
    2. Click Show me the data.
    3. Click Share > Cite/Permalink.

    In the 'Link to this page' dialog box, you can choose to copy and paste the dataset permanent link, copy a citation in different formats, such as FAOStyle or APA, or export the citation to EndNote or Mendely.

  9. How do I save a filter?

    After filtering data in data.fao.org, you can save the filters that you chose. To save data filters, perform the following steps:

    1. Open a dataset, for example, Aquaculture Production. There are multiple ways to access datasets in data.fao.org:
    - Using the main search area. For example, type Aquaculture and press the enter key.
    - Using the site navigation bar. For example, on the site navigation bar, click Catalog. Then click A > Aquaculture Production (FishStat).
    2. Click Show me the data.

    If you want to deselect a filter, click on the X next to it in the 'You Selected' area.

    3. On the filter panel on the left-hand side, click Filter by measure.
    4. Click on the measures by which you want to filter the data. For example, Value (USD) and Quantity (t). The table updates automatically and the filters that you selected appear in the 'You Selected' area.
    5. At the bottom of the filter panel, click Save filter.
    6. In the 'Save/update Query Filter' dialog box, enter a name for the filter and click Save filter.
    7. Click Ok.
  10. How do I tag a dimension?

    There are two types of tags in data.fao.org: systems tags and user tags. Systems tags are words or phrases chosen by data owner that describe an item. User tags are words or phrases chosen by users that describe an item. To tag a dimension, perform the following steps:

    1. Open a dimension, for example, Aquatic Species. There are multiple ways to access dimensions in data.fao.org:
    - Using the main search area. For example, type Aquaculture and press the enter key.
    - Using the site navigation bar. For example, on the site navigation bar, click Concepts. Then click A > Aquatic Species (Aquaculture Production).
    2. Click Show me the data.
    3. Click Tag. The 'Tag this page' dialog box appears.
    4. Type your tag in the text box. A list appears with pre-existing tags. You can choose a tag from the list or add a new one.
    5. Click Save tags.

    You will not see the tag that you entered appear immediately. Data owners must approve all tags before they appear on the site.

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