Mozilla Science Lab Week in Review, Nov. 10-16


Big shoutouts this week to all our speakers on the November community call – Demitri Muna on Trillian & Dat, Jake Vanderplas on the eScience Institute incubator for data science, and Lucianne Walkowicz on .Astronomy 6 and bringing astronomy to the public. Thanks all!

Also, huge thanks to Jared Hawkins for leading Collaborate‘s first ever Weekend Challenge, on his project to trace epidemics via social media data. Looking forward to what people come up with!

Finally, many thanks to Ben Marwick and the eScience Institute at the University of Washington for organizing the fourth live Software Carpentry Instructor Training – we always learn a ton every time we host one of these, many thanks for organizing & giving us the opportunity.

In & Around the Lab

This weekend is Collaborate’s first ever Weekend Challenge! You’re invited to hack on open Twitter data to explore ideas on how to track and visualize the spread of epidemics via social media. This is a great chance for beginners to get their feet wet with a simple node.js app, explore the geoJSON data spec and the Google Maps API, and get their hands dirty with basic strategies for large databases – and if you can’t make it this weekend, jump into the project on Collaborate anytime!

Also this week was Kaitlin Thaney‘s keynote at WSSPE, on the system design and societal considerations associated with sustainable scientific discovery in a distributed, open fashion. You can check out papers, abstracts and recordings from the conference here – as always, we’d love to hear your feedback!

SWC Instructor Training @ UW

SWC Instructor Training at the University of Washington, courtesy the eScience Institute.

Bill Mills co-taught Instructor Training at the University of Washington (as hosted by the eScience Institute) along with Greg Wilson, Tracy Teal and Warren Code – this was a fine workshop with tons of new ideas surfaced on how to help students make the leap to being instructors. Bill will be updating our Instructor Training course material with lessons learned shortly, and continuing to develop this offering in anticipation of the Research Bazaar‘s Instructor Training & SWC events at their conference early next year.

This week was also our November community call – check out the notes if you missed it! This month was brought to us by three fine astronomy professionals: Demitri Muna told us about recent plans to make astronomy data more open and usable via Trillian and the Dat project, in his plan to aggregate data across experiments by section of the sky; Jake Vanderplas showcased the eScience Institute‘s project to learn from the startup world and build a project incubator for novel scientific endeavors; and Lucianne Walkowicz connected us with the Adler Planetarium‘s efforts to inspire exploration and understanding of our Universe, build out citizen science projects via the Zooniverse project, and tell us about .Astronomy 6, coming up December 8-10 in Chicago!

Near-Term Forecast

Next week on Thursday, November 20 at 9 AM and 4 PM Pacific (UTC -8) is the next Instructor Hangouts! This week, we’re jumping right into teaching practice – speakers get 5 minutes to deliver a lesson to us on anything from their software workshop, followed by a round of feedback from everyone attending. If you’d like to take a turn at teaching, sign up on the etherpad – speaking slots are first come first served, so jump right in! Connection details and discussion on the forum – we hope you’ll join us.

Reading List

Blog post on Genomics Reference Data: The Fragmentation Problem

A weekend hackathon for health, put on by the Research Bazaar

F1000 on What is Open Science?

PLOS’ survey on data metrics for researchers and repository staff

NIH report on┬áchallenges facing the biomedical research community in locating, citing, and reusing biomedical software – comments open!