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Abstract Detail


Botanical Cyberinfrastructure: Issues, Challenges, Opportunities, and Initiatives

Beach, James [1], Bentley, Andrew [1].

Biological collections data management with Specify.

THE Specify Software Project supports biological collections with database software, and with data management and helpdesk services. The Project is based at the University of Kansas Biodiversity Research Center and has been funded for 19 years by the U.S. National Science Foundation. Specify is in production use in over 150 collections in 16 countries, though most collaborating collections are in the U.S. The Specify database application, data management and software helpdesk services are backed by eight professional staff. In 2005, we began a usability development effort that included visits to several museum and herbarium and interviews with hundreds of collections managers and curators across the country. The result of that requirements analysis is a significant re-working of the Windows interface of Specify 5.0, which was released in April 2006. Changes include new options for navigation, searching, report and label printing and other functions. Existing users will find expected features, but both new and existing Specify users, will find the redesigned capabilities and "look-and-feel" of Specify to be more approachable and powerful for the day-to-day tasks of collections management and for publishing collections data through web HTML and DiGIR XML interfaces. In 2005, we also began a parallel development effort for Specify 6, scheduled for release in early 2007. Specify 6 will rapidly adapt to the evolving needs of collaborative, web-based computing environments, work-flow architectures, web, and grid services. It will be designed for more effective integration with other kinds of ecological and earth science data. It will run on Windows, MacOS X, and Linux and will be licensed as open-source software. We invite collaboration with software development with other projects and organizations.


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Related Links:
Specify Software Project Home Page


1 - University of Kansas, Biodiversity Research Center, 1345 Jayhawk Boulevard, Lawrence, Kansas, 66045, USA

Keywords:
database
software
collections
specify
java
web services
mac os x
linux
windows
internet
specimen.

Presentation Type: Symposium or Colloquium Presentation
Session: 4-3
Location: 206/Performing Arts Center
Date: Monday, July 31st, 2006
Time: 8:45 AM
Abstract ID:258


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