Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Radical sharing with Carol Goble

Well breakfasted, I'm sitting at the moment in a keynote address given by Carol Goble, computer science professor at the University of Manchester, UK.

I had the chance to chat with her briefly yesterday:

“It's a series of war stories, basically,” she said. “I'm interested in radical sharing.” Goble is interested in tools to exchange information: work flow designs, data integration, service interoperability, scientific data provenance, social computing . . . you get the idea.

“The question is – how do we organize anarchy? I'll be talking about my expereinces (war stories) of things I wish I'd done differently, things I think I did right, how I got people to buy into what I was doing. Everything is a social problem – nothing is a technical problem.”

Some of Goble's shared lessons:
*science is conducted by individuals - not institutions
*listen to your users! - don't assume you know what is best for them
*for scientists, bury the grid as much as possible, speak to them in their language
*expect that you won't get it right the first (or even the second) time
*the essence of tools (e.g. work flows) follow patterns, it's not necessary to reinvent them from scratch
*build a community

To learn more about Goble's work visit:

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