A year ago, some enterprising lads at the IT University of Copenhagen released a recipe of beer under the Creative Commons license. Because of the license, anybody that made money from selling the beer would need to give them credit and publish any changes to the recipe under a similar license. It was a novel idea and got some press from both the Open Source and the beer brewing communities. But just like many applications in the Open Source world, getting an Open Source beer recipe is the first (and usually easiest) step in a long, involved, sometimes unpleasant, process. And I hope that anybody making Open Source anything takes criticism really well....
Many commonly used genome browsers display sequence annotations and related attributes as horizontal data tracks that can be toggled on and off according to user preferences. Most genome browsers use only simple keyword searches and limit the display of detailed annotations to one chromosomal region of the genome at a time. We have employed concepts, methodologies, and tools that were developed for the display of geographic data to develop a Genome Spatial Information System (GenoSIS) for displaying genomes spatially, and interacting with genome annotations and related attribute data.
What if you could combine online data from multiple sources to create a customized, interactive Web application that could keep your supporters in the know without requiring them to visit more than one site? And what if you could do so using free, readily available tools, eliminating the need to build an expensive custom solution from the ground up? That's the idea behind hybrid online applications known as mashups.
There is no denying that virtualization is a hot trend in IT. Intel and AMD are baking virtualization into the next generation of chips and VMWare and Microsoft are giving away their software virtualization products for Intel-based servers. Could this trend apply to the LIMS industry, too?
Laboratory Information Management Systems (LIMS) are by nature complex to design and build. They can be successfully applied across almost every facet of lab work, or once built, unfortunately, turn out to be essentially worthless.
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