EclipseCon 2007 March 5-8, Santa Clara California

Cyberinfrastructure Shell (CIShell): An OSGi-Based Framework for the Integration of Datasets and Algorithms

Weixia Huang (Indiana University), Katy Borner (Indiana University), Bruce Herr (Indiana University), Ben Markines (Indiana University)

· Demo

Tuesday, 13:30, 50 minutes | Room 207


Katy Borner

Bruce Herr

In the 21st century, progress in science and technology requires collaborations across scientific disciplines and the utilization of advanced cyberinfrastructures. In scientific fields, increasing interdisciplinary research demands novel means for the sharing of data, service, computer resource, and expertise. The Cyberinfrastructure for Network Science Center at Indiana University is working on the Cyberinfrastructure Shell (CIShell) - a user- friendly cyberinfrastructure that addresses this new need. The center is supported by several grants from NSF and other funding agencies.

In this demo, we will focus on how we design and implement the CIShell. Building on the OSGi R4 specifications, the CIShell is an open source framework that defines interfaces between datasets, algorithms, and services, and provides a means to bundle them into powerful applications and Web services. The base of the framework consists of three sets of well-defined service interfaces:
(1) Interfaces for algorithms, datasets, and data converters.
(2) Interfaces for basic services including Conversion Service and GUI Builder Service.
(3) Interfaces for application services including Scheduler Service and Data Management Service.
We will explain in details how to apply OSGi technology to the design of the CIShell plug-in architecture and how to build various application solutions including the standalone GUI applications and Web front-end solution based on OSGi specifications and Equinox implementations.

Outline The ultimate goal is to allow users to run different datasets and algorithms on all CIShell-based applications and OSGi-based frameworks. This way, CIShell framework is creating a bridge from the scientific community at large to the OSGi community.

Weixia (Bonnie) Huang is a Senior System Architect at Cyberinfrastructure for Network Science Center founded by Dr. Katy Börner. She is working on the Network Workbench and Cyberinfrastructure Shell projects. Before joining Indiana University, she worked as a Research Staff Member at Xerox Research Center.

Katy Börner is an Associate Professor of Information Science in the School of Library and Information Science, Adjunct Associate Professor in the School of Informatics, Core Faculty of Cognitive Science, Research Affiliate of the Biocomplexity Institute, Fellow of the Center for Research on Learning and Technology, Member of the Advanced Visualization Laboratory and Founding Director of the new Cyberinfrastructure for Network Science Center at Indiana University. Her research focuses on the development of data analysis and visualization techniques that inform knowledge access and management. She is particularly interested in the study of the structure and evolution of scientific disciplines and the development of cyberinfrastructures for large scale scientific collaboration and computation.

Bruce Herr is a CS graduate from Indiana University working in Dr. Katy Börner's Information Visualization Lab as a software developer. He enjoys making cool, extensible, usable, and maintainable software. His current projects are the Cyberinfrastructure Shell (CIShell), Taxonomy Validator, InfoVis Cyberinfrastructure, Network Workbench, and Notable visualizations he has helped produce are the Internet Movie Database visualization for the Viszards contest at Sunbelt 2006 and the US Patent Hierarchy visualization for the second iteration of Places & Spaces. His personal website is at

Ben Markines is a Ph.D. student at Indiana University. He received his B.S. and M.S. in Computer Science from Northern Illinois University. He is currently on an educational leave from IBM and has been on the Network Workbench team since January 2005. His interests include information visualization, network science, and the social Web.

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