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The present state in the NASA's Earth science data and information systems has evolved over the last two decades from a rather desperate and disconnected set of data providers through significant efforts by several organizations. In the 1980s NASA's Earth science data were generally held by principal investigators or at specialized, non-interoperable data systems. Considerable progress has been made during the last decade in data access, interoperability, and management of very large volumes of data. Today, a suite of Earth observing satellites, funded research investigations, and data systems are operating to provide an unprecedented amount of data and information products to a broad user community. Many lessons have been learned in the process of the evolution to-date and are being applied for the benefit of data systems' evolution in the near-term. Also, visions for the longer-term future are being studied. Embryonic technologies of today are relevant to support such visions. Future data systems with "Intelligent Archives" could support true knowledge building systems in support of the NASA's future Earth science goals.