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WP 3 - Making existing VRE (Grid) Components available in Sakai/ CHEF.

This work package was aimed at establishing the feasibility of making existing VRE (Grid) components available in Sakai/ CHEF. The project partners at Lancaster and Daresbury had access to a range of research tools that could be integrated into a VRE framework. We investigated the feasibility of creating an integrated suite of such tools, in order to determine whether there were any generic problems we needed to forewarned about. This work package contributed to a report (Evaluation Report 2) together with any software wrappers employed in making Grid tools available in the Sakai/ CHEF framework. These wrappers will serve as useful templates for other Grid tools.

Work was be done on the construction of a demonstrator, with a number of such tools integrated. It wass anticipated that the construction of such a demonstrator will be the optimal way to establish feasibility and get feedback from users in sample e-Science projects. This work package is closely coupled with WP 4, but we list the components here.

Work carried out includes:

Task Title Responsibility Description
3.1 InfoPortal Daresbury Grid Information Services and XML metadata about projects, users, applications and resources
3.2 HPCPortal Daresbury ``Active'' services for authentication, file management, data management, workspace, job submission and applications
3.3 CCF Whiteboard Daresbury Collaborative Computing Framework being deployed in the e-Minerals project from U. Reading (UK) and U. Emory (USA). Collaboration with Vassil Alexandrov (Reading)
3.4 SPP Cross search Lancaster Subject Portals Project portlet for RND resource cross searching. Collaboration with SPP project developers (Bristol, Bath, Oxford)

Sakai is an ambitious project which already comprises a rich set of tools and templates for extending the set. Since the Denver conference, Mark Norton has taked the talk section on cloning tools and written it up into a full tutorial document [79]. This tutorial contains step-by-step instructions on cloning an existing Sakai beta tool (sakai-module) and modifying it to be a new, stand alone tool. Whilst the example is a very simple ``Hello World'' application, it can serve as the basis for creating new Sakai tools. Chuck Severance demonstrated this by creating a MyProxy tool.

Pre-built collaboration and research tools have been described in Section 5. Sakai also has a comprehensive and growing set of VLE tools developed in the Sakai Educational Partners' Programme, see

Discussions have indicated a number of additional tools which could (should) be developed and integrated into a Sakai-based VRE framework. We are aware that work is ongoing both in the UK, USA and elsewhere to develop appropriate open-source Java-based tools in many of these areas which could be adapted quickly. Further information about this is provided in Appendix F.

Search Tools:
Context-based Information Retrieval, Collection Cross Search, Google Web service interface, Application Discovery, Scientific Data Query, UDDI, other information management tools as appropriate;
Collaboration/ Discussion:
IRC (Internet Relay Chat), Blog, Address Book, Wiki, Research Scheduler, Video Conferencing, Visualisation, Distributed Whiteboard, Flowchart Editor, Distributed Display, Graphing/ Charting;
Anaysis Tools:
Scientific Calculator, Active Spreadsheet, Statistical Computing, Data Management, Simple Visualisation, Grid Information, Network Information, Grid computing;
Publication/ Documentation:
Text Editor, Word Processor, Distributed Presentation Tool, Bibliography Builder, XHTML Editor, LaTeX Processor, Simple Interactive Plotting, Data and Metadata Upload and Harvesting, Project Publication, Application Publishing, UDDI;
Portal Statistics, Personal Information Manager (Chandler?), e-Notebook, Shopping Cart, Bugzilla, CVS, Portal Workspace, Authorisation Policy Management;
Training and Awareness:
Personal Information Guide (PIG), CopperCore Content Player, Tool Templates, Documentation Manager, Helpdesk interface, other e-Learning tools as appropriate.

We report on progress with evaluation and development of a couple of the tools for Sakai. The outcome of these initial evaluations is promising as we are gaining increasing knoweldge of working with the CHEF framework code base. The release of Sakai 1.0.b2 on 23rd July and later RC2 enabled us to continue with Sakai and provide a fuller report on this work at the e-Science All Hands Conference in September.

next up previous contents
Next: InfoPortal Up: SAKAI EVALUATION EXERCISE (A Previous: Performance and scalability   Contents
Rob Allan 2005-05-09