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Computing (FOLDOC) dictionary
Hierarchical Data Format
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file format, data (HDF) A library and multi-object file
format for the transfer of graphical and numerical data
between computeres. The freely available HDF distribution
consists of the library, command line utilities, test suite
source, Java interface, and the Java-based HDF Viewer (JHV).
HDF supports several different data models, including
multidimensional arrays, raster images, and tables. Each
defines a specific aggregate data type and provides an API
for reading, writing, and organising the data and metadata.
New data models can be added by the HDF developers or users.
HDF is self-describing, allowing an application to interpret
the structure and contents of a file without any outside
One HDF file can hold a mixture of related objects which can
be accessed as a group or as individual objects. Users can
create their own grouping structures called "vgroups".