This item is in: Chandos > Information management > e-learning and researchVirtual Research Environments: From portals to science gateways
Robert Allan, STFC Daresbury Laboratory, UK
Chandos Information Professional Series
A useful addition to the stock of many libraries in universities and other research institutions
A valuable resource for e-research initiated and novices at present, and will document the state of e-research in 2008 for posterity.
- definition of Virtual Research Environments and e-Research with analogies to Virtual Learning Environments
- compilation about how e-Research is carried out with reference to work in UK and USA on portals and services for collaborative learning, shared information services and repositories and their application for multi-disciplinary research
- description of Science Gateways to distributed research resources (Grid computing, data and Web 2.0 style collaboration tools) and their relevance to the grand challenges facing research requiring large teams
- practical guide to using the Sakai Collaborative Learning Framework with additional Web-based tools for an e-Research context
Virtual Research Environments examines making Information and Communication Technologies (ICT) usable by researchers working to solve “grand challenge” problems in many disciplines from social science to particle physics. It is driven by research the authors have carried out to evaluate researchers’ requirements in using information services via web portals and in adapting collaborative learning tools to meet their more diverse needs, particularly in a multidisciplinary study.
This is the motivation for what the authors have helped develop into the UK Virtual Research Environments (VRE) programme. They illustrate generics with specific instances of studies carried out comparing portal technologies and evaluating usability. This work, and further development of collaboration and Webbased research tools has been carried out with international collaborators, in particular using the Sakai framework and other recent Java-language based portal programming frameworks and associated standards.
The book is divided into a number of chapters providing motivation, illustrations, comparisons of technology and tools, practical information about deployment and use and comments on issues and difficulties in ensuring uptake of e-Science and Grid technology by already practicing researchers.
ISBN 1 84334 562 5
ISBN-13: 978 1 84334 562 6
284 pages 234 x 156mm paperback
£52.50 / US$90.00 / €65.00
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About the author
Robert Allan, STFC Daresbury Laboratory, UK
- What is e-research?
- What is a VRE?
- Portals and science gateways for e-research
- A service-oriented architecture approach
- Development methodology
Motivation and requirements
- Research lifecycle: data, information and knowledge
- Generic usage scenario and requirements
- What functionality does an e-researcher need?
- What components need to be integrated for e-research?
- Illustrative examples
Creating and using research data
- Characteristics of data
- High-performance computing in e-research
- Managing research data
Managing and using digital information
- Information sources used by researchers
- E-research and the wider information environment
Collaboration, trust and security
- Virtual organisations and their implementation
- Collaborative working
- Collaboration tools
- Security in a VRE: authentication and authorisation
Domain differences and usability
- E-research, e-learning and digital information
- Differences between research domains
VRE architecture: the technology
- Don’t reinvent the wheel
- N-tier architecture
- Web services and service-oriented architecture
- Security frameworks
- VRE service definitions
- What e-infrastructure is available?
E-infrastructure and grid resources
- What is grid computing?
- Grid applications
- E-infrastructure, SOA and services
Desktop environments and the web
- Lightweight grid computing
- Desktop e-research tools
- E-research portals
The Sakai collaborative learning and research framework
- Working with Sakai
- Portal prototype – the Sakai VRE Demonstrator
- Portal organisation and use cases
Example 1: E-infrastructure for social science research
- A scenario from social science research
- Social science research data
- High-performance modelling and software development
- Training and outreach
- E-infrastructure for social science research
- Experiences with the NCeSS VRE
Example 2: E-infrastructure for experimental facilities
- Requirements and prerequisites
- Mapping requirements to data flow, data models and analysis
- Project management and other issues
Conclusions: lessons learned and limitations
- Top ten e-research requirements
- Impact of e-research