Method-centered digital communities on protocols.io for fast-paced scientific innovation

Bonnie L Hurwitz, Lori Kindler, Alexei Stoliartchouk, Leonid Teytelman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

The Internet has enabled online social interaction for scientists beyond physical meetings and conferences. Yet despite these innovations in communication, dissemination of methods is often relegated to just academic publishing. Further, these methods remain static, with subsequent advances published elsewhere and unlinked. For communities undergoing fast-paced innovation, researchers need new capabilities to share, obtain feedback, and publish methods at the forefront of scientific development. For example, a renaissance in virology is now underway given the new metagenomic methods to sequence viral DNA directly from an environment. Metagenomics makes it possible to "see" natural viral communities that could not be previously studied through culturing methods. Yet, the knowledge of specialized techniques for the production and analysis of viral metagenomes remains in a subset of labs. This problem is common to any community using and developing emerging technologies and techniques. We developed new capabilities to create virtual communities in protocols.io, an open access platform, for disseminating protocols and knowledge at the forefront of scientific development. To demonstrate these capabilities, we present a virology community forum called VERVENet. These new features allow virology researchers to share protocols and their annotations and optimizations, connect with the broader virtual community to share knowledge, job postings, conference announcements through a common online forum, and discover the current literature through personalized recommendations to promote discussion of cutting edge research. Virtual communities in protocols.io enhance a researcher's ability to: discuss and share protocols, connect with fellow community members, and learn about new and innovative research in the field. The web-based software for developing virtual communities is free to use on protocols.io. Data are available through public APIs at protocols.io.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number2271
JournalF1000Research
Volume5
DOIs
StatePublished - 2017

Fingerprint

Innovation
Virology
Network protocols
Metagenomics
Research Personnel
Metagenome
Aptitude
Viral DNA
Interpersonal Relations
Research
Internet
Software
Communication
Application programming interfaces (API)
Technology
Feedback

Keywords

  • Bacteriophage
  • Bioinformatics
  • Forum
  • Metagenomics
  • Phage
  • Protocols
  • Virtual community
  • Virus

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)
  • Immunology and Microbiology(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Pharmacology, Toxicology and Pharmaceutics(all)

Cite this

Method-centered digital communities on protocols.io for fast-paced scientific innovation. / Hurwitz, Bonnie L; Kindler, Lori; Stoliartchouk, Alexei; Teytelman, Leonid.

In: F1000Research, Vol. 5, 2271, 2017.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Hurwitz, Bonnie L ; Kindler, Lori ; Stoliartchouk, Alexei ; Teytelman, Leonid. / Method-centered digital communities on protocols.io for fast-paced scientific innovation. In: F1000Research. 2017 ; Vol. 5.
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