NBIC's BioAssist has as first goal to support the Netherlands Genomics Initiative (NGI) with their bioinformatics needs. Furthermore, all people that need bioinformatics in The Netherlands can come to BioAssist for help. BioAssist has different groups for different kinds of support.
Structure of BioAssist
- For problems that come back in many groups, we have set up Task Forces that collaborate on developing software to solve them. This software should be usable by bioinformaticians and biologists.
- To solve bioinformatics questions of individual research groups, our Bioinformatics Research Support (BRS) can help find the right tools and make them work for a specific case.
- To be able to help many users without having to install all software everywhere, the e-BioGrid team can help making applications available through remote (web) interfaces or on large-scale computer infrastructure.
- To make new tools that were developed as academic prototypes available to a larger users group, our BioAsssist Engineering Team (BET) will take them one step further along in their development.
BioAssist Think Tank
To guide BioAssist into the future, we have set up the BioAssist Think Tank, or BATT. The BATT consists of a small number of NBIC Faculty members (roughly two per existing Task Force or associated group plus a couple of general thought leaders) that have indicated that they are willing to invest some of their valuable time to keep BioAssist on track. Other NBIC faculty members are welcome to join discussions and meetings on a topic-by-topic basis.
The BATT will meet twice per year in person to discuss actual issues, and between those meetings the members have contact via a special mailing list. Possible subjects to be discussed include possibilities for future collaboration, funding, new directions of bioinformatics for which support is needed, and internal organisation of BioAssist.