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02 Sep 2016

CFP: BOF for RDA Plenary "Software for better description and retrieval of online scientific data"

Call for Participation


Research Data Alliance 8th Plenary Program

BOF: Software for Better Description and Retrieval of Online Scientific Data

Thursday, September 15, 2016. Breakout Session 3, 4:00–5:30 p.m.

This BOF will introduce a new dimension to RDA breakout sessions—demonstrations of software to aid better access to online experimental data.

Background:  Concerns about the integrity of scientific data stored in public archives and about the ability to find relevant data sets and to interpret their contents have placed new emphasis on software systems.  Such software may be able to enhance the authoring of comprehensive metadata using community-endorsed standards, to ensure the annotation of data with terms from standard ontologies and terminologies, and to aid the identification and retrieval of relevant datasets for exploration and re-analysis. Work to develop such software is taking place in different scientific research communities, in libraries and repositories, and in the research and development laboratories of vendors.

This BOF session will provide a unique opportunity for attendees to demonstrate for one another their software—both research prototypes and mature systems—and to discuss the challenges of constructing computer-based tools to enhance the quality of data annotation and of data retrieval.  The session will provide an opportunity to explore commonalities and differences among systems, as well as to discuss potential avenues of collaboration among the tool developers in their work to make scientific data more findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable. 

How to Participate:  Attendees who are interested in discussing and demonstrating their software in this session must contact the sessions organizers ASAP.  Please send e-mail to organizers and indicate:

1. Name of person who will be demonstrating the software

2. Institutional affiliation

3. Name of software system

4. Brief description of the software

5. What attendees will see in the demo

Participants must bring their own computers to the meeting to demonstrate their software; RDA will not provide computers.  No guarantees can be made about the availability of electrical power in the meeting room; participants should bring fully charged laptops.  Participants will be able to access the Internet via the hotel’s wifi.


Session Organizers:

Mark A. Musen, Stanford University,

Susanna-Assunta Sansone, University of Oxford,

Allen Dearry, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences,



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