Re: suggestion

John Walshaw (
Sat, 6 Jan 1996 18:06:34 +0000 (GMT)

A Happy New Year to everyone,

In reply to Sophia's last comments (sorry about the delay):

> I'm a biologist doing just computer work for the moment. I would be
> interested in coordinating a discussion group on a particular topic. I
> would like though to know the topic in advance so I can prepare it. How are
> we gonna organise ourselves though? Am I supposed to pick up a subject
> myself or will I be assigned one? If the former is the case, I think there
> should be a way of letting other people know in order to avoid
> overlappings.
> I wouldn't mind doing some computer programming in case it's needed or for
> a project.

For those of you who are prepared to coordinate discussion groups, I
think it will be appropriate for you to choose a subject in which you
have expertise, which is relevant to the syllabus.

As you are involved in computing at the moment Sophia, and participated
in the VSNS-BCD course on sequence analysis, this could be an appropriate
subject on which you might supervise a discussion. Naturally we do not
intend to treat this area in as much depth as the BCD course, but to
describe the principles, goals and difficulties in the field.
We are also fortunate in having Georg Fuellen and some of the other
coordinators of that course involved.

If you are interested in doing any programming, then writing
cgi-bin scripts for Web-forms comes to mind. We've already mentioned
quizzes/self-assessment forms, but there are plenty of other possibilities;
for example, David Moss, in his tutorial on such forms (I'll post the URL
shortly), provides a Web-interface to a program which calculates
molecular geometry. Forms also have useful applications in sequence
analysis, of course, many database sites already having Web-interfaces to
their search routines.

> >how often you think you will be able to participate in BioMOO tutorials
> Participate, I wouldn't mind spending an hour per day.
> Giving a tutorial no more than once or twice per week.

Thanks for the generous offer- this will be much appreciated. I think that
official group tutorials might take place say every fortnight, but obviously
each group can "play it by ear", depending on just how much time the students
want to devote to these sessions- individual discussion groups can meet
as often as they like.

> those of you who are new to 'MOO's,
> I'm familiar with MOO. I know nothing about MOO programming though.

Some of our technical consultants are familiar with the more advanced
aspects of MOOs, so can help the rest of us out here.

> It seems to me a really good idea that every tutorial gets transformed into
> an HTML document. Students might want to go back, refresh their minds or
> whatever. Students from another group might want to have a look as well. I
> think that it would be beneficial if qustions asked from the students and
> the answers given from the tutors were to be included as well. I'm willing
> to do the HTML for the tutorials I'll be giving.

I agree this is a good idea- we can try and put together a useful archive
of discussions which we can mount on our server alongside the e-mail list

John Walshaw