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2013 Planned NEEShub Enhancements


Here are the most significant NEEShub enhancements planned for the upcoming year:

New High Performance Computing (HPC) features – The batchsubmit command will be enhanced for additional usability features such as showing job status. New computing venues will also be made available to support the rapidly growing NEES HPC community. Information about Pegasus, a powerful workflow feature available with the submit command, will be packaged and made available to interested HPC users.

Data Object Identifiers (DOIs) for other resources – DOIs are unique character strings used to permanently identify electronic data, files, or documents for the purpose of long-term data curation and accessibility. DOIs for Project Experiments were made available in June 2012. Coming in 2013, DOIs will be made available for Database and Computational Model resources. DOIs are growing in importance as they give proper credit to researchers and demonstrate the researcher's contribution to the community.

Preservation Pipeline Phase 2 – Phase 2 of the Preservation Pipeline will add on to the virus-checking and metadata collection completed with Phase 1. In Phase 2, detailed audit information will be recorded for data files stored in the Project Warehouse. Checksums, a mechanism for ensuring the integrity of files, will be verified on a regular basis for Project Warehouse files. Overall, the Preservation Pipeline lays the foundation for long-term, secure storage of Project Warehouse data.

Incorporation of Federated Identity – Many mainstream web sites have started to allow users to login with existing login information from social networking sites such as Facebook, Google, or Twitter. NEEShub will be enhanced to provide a similar feature called ‘Federated Identity’. Moving to a Federated Identity should simplify requesting a new NEEShub account and will ultimately streamline the login process for all users.

Curation at the Source prototype – NEEScomm IT will partner with a handful of NEES sites to develop a ‘curation at the source’ prototype. This prototype will result in a more direct linkage between a Site’s Data Acquisition System (DAQ) and the Project Warehouse. This direct linkage should enable quick, automated, and efficient upload of experimental data to the Project Warehouse shortly after an experiment occurs.

Support for launching other tools from Project Warehouse – Currently the inDEED tool is launchable from data files within the Project Warehouse. With the wide array of powerful tools now available on NEEShub, enhancements will be made to allow the launch of other tools directly from data files within the Project Warehouse. Tools currently under discussion are RDV and 3DDV.

Generalized Database solution – The current process to add a new Database resource to NEEShub is somewhat customized and labor intensive. Given the growing popularity of the Databases resource, work is planned to provide the ability for any NEEShub user to define a new database and upload data to it.

Hardware Upgrade – It’s hard to believe but the core NEEShub hardware has been in place for over three years. Given the rapid pace of technological change and growth, the NEEScomm IT team will begin a gradual replacement of hardware based on age and condition. This will benefit the NEES community by providing faster, larger, and more reliable NEEShub hardware. NEEScomm IT will be performing the majority of this work after hours to minimize downtime.

Traveling NEEShub boot camps – After experimenting with various approaches for NEEShub training, the hands-on NEEShub boot camp has shown itself to be the most popular and effective. In light of this, 4-5 NEEShub boot camps will be held across the U.S. in 2013. The tentative plan allows for 2 boot camps on the West Coast, 1 in the Midwest, and 1 on the East Coast between January and September 2013.

Post-Experiment Curation Activity – In order to emphasize the importance of uploading data and populating metadata for NEES Projects, the NEEScomm Data Curation team has begun to schedule post-experiment meetings/conference calls with NEES Research teams and key Site personnel. The primary intent of these meetings is to establish a healthy and open working relationship between the Research, Site, and Data Curation teams. The meetings will also educate Research teams on NEEShub basics, required data and metadata for Project Warehouse projects, and the different options for uploading data to the Project Warehouse.