The Scholarly Technology Group is a participant in a
5 year $3.2M grant awarded to Brown University by the National
Science Foundation, Division of Information and Intelligent
Systems. Professor Stan Zdonik, Brown University Department of
Computer Science, is the lead Principal Investigator; Steve
Rice (Brown), Mitch Cherniack (Brandeis), and Michael J.
Franklin (Berkeley) are co-Principal Investigators. This award
is in the NSF's prestigious Information Technology Research
(ITR) program, which is designed to strengthen the nation's
leadership in information technology.
This project will study ways to make using the Internet faster and more
responsive by designing web-based middleware -- software to enhance the
interaction between users and Web servers. The team's research focuses on
designing technology to let people create profiles of their information
interests and on developing techniques that can use those profiles to
manage web data intelligently. In addition, this team will explore how
these user profiles might let people update the information they carry in
their portable computers and cell phones. They hope to develop
techniques that would allow someone to plug into an Ethernet socket to
update the limited memory of a computing device. The user would receive
updated e-mail and other information. The researchers hope to to make such
"data recharging" on a portable device as simple as recharging the battery.
STG's role includes: (i) managing a testbed for exploring user behavior and
testing new technology and (ii) analyzing the XML
query patterns of a large humanities user community.
For the testbed we are using
Online, an online textbase of writing by women in English, between 1350
and 1850, which is published by the Brown University Women Writers Project.
Developed over the last 10 years this textbase now consists of 200 texts
encoded in a version of the Text Encoding Initiative SGML/XML element set
and supports sophisticated structure-sensitive queries, converting the
results to HTML for delivery in the user's browser. One of the first
SGML/XML-based textbases, WWO is now in use by scholars and students in
over 180 colleges and universities around the world.
For more information about STG's participation in this project
For more information
about the Women Writers Project and Women Writers Online contact Julia Flanders
Proposal Abstract: This project focuses on the problem of adding data
management facilities to inherently autonomous, distributed information
sources such as those that occur in the web. Data management here means
the allocation and structuring of resources to provide more responsive
access to data for applications. In this kind of environment, data
management must be superimposed through an independently controlled service
that exists between the data sources and the applications. This is
facilitated through the introduction of architecture based on data centers,
a collection of machines that prestage and distribute data for its clients.
Client applications submit profiles describing their overall data needs,
and the data center gathers data and organizes it on behalf of their
clients in order to provide efficient data access. This research explores
systems issues and techniques for the design and operation of data centers.
This includes the management of large numbers of profiles, heuristics for
balancing the needs of large numbers of users against the available
resources of the data center, and the efficient processing of future client
data needs against the data that is managed by the data center.