Update at January 2nd..1995
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Happy New Year to Everybody associated with, registered for, or
contributing to the VSNS-PPS Course. We hope you all had a
joyous and peaceful time with your loved ones.
About a week before Christmas Day we closed Registrations via
our electronic form, since we were already oversubscribed,
even though registrations were only open for about a fortnight.
We have registered more than 250 students from 27 different countries,
so this will be a truly global learning experience. We are, however,
saddened by the absence of Africa, India, the former Soviet Union, and all of
Central Asia :-(
To those unfortunate individuals that were not accepted or
not in time for registration, please accept our commiserations and
apologies, but our resources are unfortunately limited.
Which is not to say
we won't be running the course again at a later date, so if
you're still likely to be interested, give us your particulars
by registering anyway, and we'll get back to you if and when
To those of you who did register, you should ALL have heard back
from us by email, either way. However, some of the messages we sent
out just before the Christmas holidays were bounced back to us. If you
have not heard, you may be in this category. Please check with our
list of bounces (IS THIS YOU?
- off the Main Menu), sort out the problem
with your email address, and send it on to us, if you wish us to add
your name back into the registrations list. The same goes for any URL
that you may have provided for us, and which we detect has problems.
E-Mail Discussion Lists We had hoped to have
these running over the holiday period, so that we could start getting
to know each other and raising the issues that interest us. BUT we
didn't quite succeed :-( Sorry!
regularly, and as soon as we
get them running, subscribe to the lists you think appropriate to you,
and Let the Fun Begin.
BioMOO Party For the next two
weeks or so, we thought it would be a good time, before we get down to
the nitty-gritty, to take the opportunity to meet each other
informally, and at the same time to get to grips with the MOO
technology. Please register with BioMOO VERY SOON, if you haven't done
so already, and have a go at MOOing. You should be able to find
someone in there who will help newcomers. Have a look first at the instructional pages
provided, and then try logging in as guest :-
bioinformatics.weizmann.ac.il:8888 connect guest Soon
thereafter, you should
using your first name(plus intial of
your surname). We hope that several consultants and students will
hang around and chat with each other during these early days. Don't
be shy; we're ALL newbies in cyberspace. We hope to meet you there.
Technology This is intended primarily for students, but
consultants should also read it. In these first few weeks you should
be getting your learning system into trim. As far as this Course is
concerned, this means organising and optimising your computer for the
technical aspects that this course will demand,
some of which are listed below. If you need help, raise it on the
vsns-pps-technical email discussion list; somebody's probably already
solved your problem.
Operating System and
Hardware If you are intending to use a non-UNIX PC, then you must
be running Windows 3.1, preferably under DOS 5.1 or later. If you need
to upgrade any other elements of your set-up (eg monitor quality,
interface software, etc), then now is the time to get it done, not
half-way through the course!
Browser Try and ensure that
you are using the `best' version of browser for your set-up. Opinions
differ, and we are sure it will be discussed on vsns-pps-technical,
but find out the LATEST release of your favourite browser. I (AlanM
:-) prefer Netscape running under MS-Windows, when I can't use a
Silicon Graphics. It's also a VERY GOOD IDEA to install more than one
browser on your machine, if at all possible (they all have different
Viewers The Course material will make use of MIME technology that
requires you have RasMol and KineMage installed on your machine.
If you haven't got them yet, or if you have old versions, NOW is the
time to download them from the archives, and get them running on your
machine (MAGE for UNIX is coming RSN :-).
Check out chemical MIME,
and do whatever is necessary to configure your system so that the
appropriate viewer responds when you click on a MIME link.
Contributing There are many ways in which the course could
be enhanced by your specific contribution.
- Many of you, when
registering, indicated that you wanted your own URL, ie your own Home
Page, where you could develop hyper-material of your own. Well, we
can load people's pages onto our server, if you can't get them
mounted on a server local to you. You can ftp them to us by
anonymous ftp to
www.cryst.bbk.ac.uk into the directory
Remember to use
binary if you are sending images or
If you want guidance on producing your own
stuff, check out our Style Guide
- Students will be expected to undertake a Project on some
topic from the Course, and consultants have undertaken to help and
advise individuals or groups in their efforts. Think about what area
you're interested in, and where you would benefit most. There will be
opportunities to suggest and discuss suitable project topics, as well
as the <../families/families.html>Protein Families, some of
which are already under way.
VSNS-PPS Glossary will be of tremendous
value to the Course. Many of the documents in the Course will be
AUTOMATICALLY marked up
so that all entries in the Glossary appear as hyperlinks. Can you
contribute some definitions of terms, or even lists of words that you
wish to see included? If you wish to help out, email the Glossary
firstname.lastname@example.org or join the vsns-pps-glossary
email discussion list.
- Volunteers will be sought to help with certain
aspects of the course. If there's a particular area you wish to undertake,
email Alan Mills on email@example.com. Otherwise, check out the
Vounteer page from time to time.
We expect it may be necessary to organise students into tutorial groups with
a consultant or two as `tutor'. This is only to relieve the amount of effort
at the centre, and not to swamp resources, such as email discussion lists, and
BioMoo sessions. To this end we will be publishing some schedules, of times
and groupings. We will try to accommodate preferences and time zones, but
please bear with us.
And again, a Very Happy New Year from the VSNS-PPS Course Organisers.