Friday, 8 May 2009

NGS & OMII-UK project in the news

A recent edition of the weekly grid bulletin, iSGTW, featured an article by Simon Hettrick from OMII-UK on the joint NGS and OMII-UK Engage project.

The article explains the background to the Engage project and why it was set up with the goal of finding out the computational needs of various research communities by actually going out and talking to the researchers.

This approach is still somewhat unusual in e-science and has been a long time coming. How can we be sure we are providing the resources that researchers need if we don't go out and talk to them? The grid was originally built for the particle physicists but now there is a much larger research community who want to take advantage of the opportunities that distributed computing offers. The social scientists and molecular biologists, for example, don't necessarily work in the same way as the particle physicists and it is important that the tools are in place for them to take advantage of all available resources.

The Engage project will hopefully produce tools which will be deployed on the NGS and made available to these diverse communities therefore attracting more users from different subject areas. There is a lot of work yet to be done in taking the outcomes of the Engage project, making them available to the communities and, perhaps most importantly, making sure that the community knows that these tools exist for them to use.

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