The overall purpose of the Danish ELIXIR Node of bioinformatics tool interoperability and integration is to address the main problems in tool utilisation experienced currently by the life sciences community. We propose to focus on the following key services:
Creation of a comprehensive tool registry equipped with adequate search functionality based on the existing and emerging ontologies in the area of life sciences. This involves a comprehensive effort in tool description shared by the Node and several ELIXIR partners as well as the individual tool providers. The registry will continuously interchange content with other tool registries, existing and emerging.
Provision of tools in the form preferred by users across academia and industry: the Node will encourage and assist tool providers in generation of access interfaces sought after by the community. In some cases the Node will host entire tools. This effort will involve constant monitoring of the tools area in general and the changing needs of the users specifically. The Node will actively promote programmatic access to tools and contribute to competence build-up in this area among the tool providers. The Node will also work on cloudification of tools and general mirroring in order to improve robustness.
Benchmarking, tool sustainability and renewal: the Node will coordinate the flow of information on the tool quality, relevance and licensing terms, and make it available to the users on regular basis. Automatic update of tools will also be promoted and the Node will actively encourage tool providers to do this.
Tool interoperability: promotion of standard data formats and schemas as well as evaluation and promotion of workflow engines and integrated workbenches. The effort will build upon the ongoing efforts in this area within the European countries behind ELIXIR.
Head of Node
(Technical University of Denmark (DTU))