In early June 2013, Ann Marie Clark, Director of the Arnold Library at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, wrote this blog entry on how her organization has successfully implemented eagle-i.
Connecting the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center’s Shared Resources to eagle-i
Ann Marie Clark, Director, Arnold Library
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center
June 5, 2013
Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center’s (FHCRC) Shared Resources core facilities support biomedical research by providing services and expertise that permit more rapid translation of laboratory studies into clinical applications, improve the feasibility and efficiency of clinical trials, and serve as focal points for access to technology. These facilities give investigators, both on and off campus, opportunities to augment their research with resources that would not otherwise be possible, convenient or cost effective in each individual laboratory.
In fact, Shared Resources has a long-standing tradition of extending services to the broader community of biomedical researchers – so when the opportunity for membership in the eagle-i network arrived, the decision to join was simple. More challenging, though, was the question of how to participate without duplicating effort, creating extra expense and introducing inefficiency. As it happened, Shared Resources already had an award-winning website, managed by the Arnold Library. Scientists in the core labs provide content, guidance and requirements; librarians write, edit, photograph and create video and other imagery to promote access to the core labs and provide training to the research community.
Library staff, in discussion with the eagle-i team at Harvard, began to explore the best method for developing a system which would seamlessly propagate descriptions and metadata from the Shared Resources website’s Drupal CMS to the central eagle-i node. It was clear that the only way to manage the cost and efforts involved in maintaining content in both the Shared Resources website and eagle-i would be to connect the two in an automated workflow. Ultimately it was agreed that a custom Drupal module should be developed to translate and process the data between the two sites. This work required the assistance and dedicated time of a very experienced Drupal developer.
Therefore, the Arnold Library sought and was fortunate to obtain funding from National Network of Libraries of Medicine Pacific Northwest Region (NN/LM PNR). The NN/LM provided support for the project via a Medical Library Pilot Project award to Ann Marie Clark, Library Director. Freelock, a Seattle-based development firm specializing in Drupal web solutions, was contracted to build the novel Drupal module.
Working together, Arnold Library staff, members of the eagle-i team, and developers at Freelock created the new Drupal module. Designed to reside alongside the existing Shared Resources website, it copies the site’s content to a local eagle-i node, which then hands the data along to eagle-i Central for inclusion in the master directory. Content need only be created or edited in one location (the Drupal site) and once published, key elements of that same material are instantly pushed across to the eagle-i network.
As of June 4, 2013, the new Drupal module for eagle-i integration is complete, tested and connected to the FHCRC local installation of eagle-i. Communication between FHCRC’s local eagle-i instance and eagle-i Central is operational – automatically posting and updating content to Central.
All the involved parties (FHCRC, Harvard, the NN/LM and Freelock) agreed that another appropriate outcome of the project would be open source sharing of the Drupal module code into the Drupal.org community site. This should be completed in early June 2013. Our hope is that this module is useful to other Core Labs and Shared Resources groups, and we encourage our colleagues to take advantage of either this, or eagle-i’s existing framework to join the network.
The Arnold Library would like to extend our particular gratitude to Drs. Lee Nadler and Daniela Bourges, Julie McMurry, Doug McFadden, Marc Ciriello and Sophia Cheng at Harvard for their vision and efforts in making this possible. In Seattle, we are grateful to the disciplined and creative team at Freelock, including John Locke, Peter McKinnon, Timon Davis, and Aaron Lamb. Special thanks to Vice Presidents for Shared Resources, Janell Baldwin and Dr. Paul Woloshin for inspiring and sponsoring the project. Finally, we greatly appreciate the NN/LM PNR’s support in extending access to biomedical resources by funding this project.
This project has been funded in whole or in part with Federal funds from the Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Library of Medicine, under Contract No. HHS-N-276-2011-00008-C with the University of Washington.
The eagle-i Consortium is supported by a two-year, $15 million American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) award (#U24 RR 029825) from the National Center for Research Resources (NCRR), part of the National Institutes of Health (NIH).