Drug Information Association (DIA) 2012 was filled with sharing and learning. The conference theme was “Collaborate To Innovate,” and Dean Kamen set the tone by sharing how he’s collaborated in prosthetic limb development and water purification. Dean left DIA with a friendly tweak and an implicit challenge. He shared that the Coca Cola Company, by distributing water purifiers to the over 1 billion people who are in need of clean water, might improve the health of more people than the sum total of all members of DIA. What a way to start the conference.
As people came to our booth, there was a pattern of questioning that emerged. It goes something like:
DIA Attendee: “Eli Lilly?! What are you selling?”
Lilly COI: “Uh, nothing”
DIA Attendee: “Well, what are you doing here then?”
Lilly COI: “We’re leading Open Innovation in Clinical Development and have some tools and projects we are putting in the open for free. We think it’s good.”
DIA Attendee: “That’s sounds interesting (pause, quizzical look). But isn’t Lilly a for profit company?”
Lilly COI: “Yup”
DIA Attendee: “Well, why are you – Lilly – doing this?”
The PLoS Hub for Clinical Trials collects PLoS journal articles that relate to clinical trials. The Hub is a site for researchers to share their views and build a dynamic, interactive community.
The PLoS Hub for Clinical Trials features articles originally published in PLoS Clinical Trials, along with articles from all the PLoS titles that publish clinical trials.
In the future, it will also feature open-access articles from other journals plus user-generated content.” More…
Our development team likes things and technology from a variety of domains. We hope you enjoy this week’s We Like…
What if finding all things clinical were as easy as finding scooters?
An oldie but goody. Data driven documents enable compelling visualization and exploration of data.
They are among us. Observing. Experimenting. They may be your friends and neighbors. They are in the long tail of science. They are… Citizen-Scientists.
A couple of weeks ago, amateur astronomers charted the once-every-hundred-years-or-so transit of Venus across the face of the Sun. In anticipation, California software maker Esri created and released a smartphone app that allowed people to capture their observations of the rare event. The app also uploaded the data to Esri’s online map in real time. From it, they garnered data on observation points and times as well as some really cool photos of the event.
It’s a great example of Citizen Science, defined as any kind of scientific research done by non-professional scientists. The people at Esri are certainly professional software developers, but with their smartphone app, they were able to tap into the motivations and purposes of hobbyist-astronomers everywhere. The app gave zealous skywatchers a great excuse to have a lot of fun with their hobby and at the same time contribute to the growing body of knowledge about our solar system.
François Grey of the Citizen Cyberscience Centre in Switzerland is leading the charge in advancing web-based scientific research and education. More…