OpenSocial Gadget Contest

Adding new features to Profiles and/or VIVO

Printable Proposal Content

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Identifying resourses as we type.

Proposal Status: 

I think we can do a good job at identification of resources as we feed new content on VIVO profile. I had this idea last year. For instance, a researcher would enter his description in VIVO and as he types, he would get suggestions on VIVO resources identified in his statements.


I developed a prototype last year :


I could have bugs in there but I guess it's good enough to convey the idea.

Commenting is closed.

Harmonize Profiles Gadget

Proposal Status: 

A researcher may have a primary, home location, e.g., UCSF Profiles, where they've taken care to make sure their profile is accurate and complete.  The researcher may also have a secondary profile at another institution, at an independent research lab, at a hospital.  Duplicating and keeping an extensive profile containing many publications, grants, patents, etc. would be tedious -- in fact, so tedious that few people would devote the effort.


What if there were a gadget that could be dropped onto the user's profile page that examined a primary and secondary profile and noted the differences (for a visual, think WinDiff or a source code merge tool).  When clicked, the gadget could do a merge or "harmonize" the two profiles, note the desired changes, and allow the user to approve.  For an empty secondary profile this would essentially be a copy operation, with the exception of links or reference types that may not be supported in common among two systems.  Afterwards, this Harmonize Gadget would be used to keep profiles aligned with the fewest number of clicks.


An initial test case could be developed between Profiles, VIVO, and KNODE. KNODE discovers researcher content differently than either VIVO or Profiles.  A researcher could claim their KNODE profile, then use the Harmonize Gadget to merge and align the machine generated profile in KNODE with the curated version in Profiles or VIVO.  Or a claimed KNODE profile could be used via this gadget to populate a VIVO profile.


This would be based on VIVO RDF retrieved from both systems via the gadget.  RDF would make the comparison of content much easier.  The merge and update back to each system is probably the biggest, new technical challenge. 

Commenting is closed.

Conference Recommendation

Proposal Status: 

1. Harvest "Research Raven" into structured form (this may require getting permission):

Microsoft Academic Research has this data but it seems limited to computer science.  PubsHub also mantains such data but it's proprietary.


2. Using keywords from a user's profile, match people to upcoming calls for papers at conferences. Sort into two categories: conferences to attend and conferences to submit to.


3. List the top ranked upcoming conferences for a given person.

Commenting is closed.

Citation alert using data from Microsoft Academic Research

Proposal Status: 

Give profiled researchers a list, in order of recency, of citations to their publications as listed in their profile. Use Microsoft Academic Research's API to do so.

At present, the only way to know this information is to sign up using Scopus or Web of Knowledge. Google Scholar also has a tool but their author disambiguation is relatively weak.

If indeed you can get the names of the publications from Microsoft Academic, this has upsides for both system administrators and profiled researchers. Profiled researchers learn about who is discussing their work. System administrators, and the university in general, have a carrot to encourage researchers to keep their publications accurate and up to date.

Commenting is closed.

Organizational name lookup using Virtual International Authority File (VIAF) service

Proposal Status: 


The Virtual International Authority File (VIAF) is an international service designed to provide convenient access to the world's major name authority files. Its creators envision the VIAF as a building block for the Semantic Web to enable switching of the displayed form of names for persons to the preferred language and script of the Web user. VIAF began as a joint project with the Library of Congress (LC), the Deutsche Nationalbibliothek (DNB), the Bibliothèque nationale de France (BNF) and OCLC.


Read more:

– Demo of the service:

– API documentation:




Commenting is closed.

Rewarding a Profilee's External Media Presence/Q Score by Adding "Mention Mapper" or Profilee Rating

Proposal Status: 

One way to further engage the profilees and encourage their media (online and traditional) interaction: Might we add links to media "mention mappers", which quantify social (and other) media appearances, similar to how Q Scores rate familiarity levels of brands, companies and individuals? A good prototype is the Klout influence scoring model. In this way, we could reward profilees for their high "influence" scores in external, non-UCSF media. We could also consider, in developing each profilee's rating, whether or not s/he has added his/her UCSF Profile to his/her LinkedIn or Facebook profile.

Examples:,,, NCRR site listing media mentions

In this way, we could imitate those user-oriented and crowdsourcing "help" forums like MS Developers' Network/MSDN, etc.). These sites reward members for frequency (or helpfulness) of responses by providing "points", "stars" or other indices. It would also advertise, to profilees, the benefits of profile maintenance and frequent external media appearances. This would be a minimally labor-intensive way to transfer to profilees partial ownership of the task of promoting their own profiles. By encouraging a larger media presence, we would also broaden outreach for the UCSF Profiles in general.

Commenting is closed.

Cross platform research query

Proposal Status: 

·Research scientists want to know what others have done or are doing in order to strengthen their knowledge base.
·Research information resides in various publications/data sets hosted in a variety of public or private domains.
A research scientist can use his/her own research data to correlate findings from other research scientists in order to determine who has worked or is working in this research area, with a focus on what others have studied, who performed the research, whether the researchers’ area of interest is relevant to their own research. If and when they find a match, they can look at the data set for further analysis if available. This type of correlation can also be performed within their own data set
Develop a way to enable a research scientist to query online publications and data sets based on their interest (e.g., key words, etc.). Allow the end user to define which platform(s) or other filtering elements as part of advanced search. Once queried, show the result in drill down fashion, starting name, title, contact information, etc. Further drill down will show publications and data sets. The level of detail is based on data set. Publically provided data from a platform like Pubmed will be readily available. But if the collaboration is established among universities and private companies then those could be used as well. This is really a matter of how much we collaborate within and outside.
user search on keyword: brca
The system searches on various platforms such as UCSF research DB, UC research DB, Pubmed, cochrane, medlineplus, Europe PubMed Central, Amgen, Genzyme, Genentech, Novartish.....
Level 1 result: Publication titles, names, contact information, etc.
Level 2 result: The whole publication
Level 3 result: Data set used
Level 4 Operation/Result: Do correlated query among others data sets with option of including your own

This enables the researcher scientist to contact the associated researcher. Then if allowed and available more reference data can be queried whether from system or directly from the source (the contacted researcher).

A tool like this could enhance medical research and collaboration tremendously.

The system could be as simple as providing names and contact information at first, and then expanded by adding more features to enable complex queries.

Just a thought!

Commenting is closed.

CTSI Data Autofeeds - Great Resources for Other UCSF Sites

Proposal Status: 

The automated CTSI data feed (and the UCSF Profiles mini-search feed) are very useful but not necessarily well-known features. The first feature auto-feeds live data from Pubmed publication lists and other UCSF resources into pages hosted on departmental or other UCSF websites. The second links from UCSF pages into UCSF Profiles. 

If we haven't already, might we ask UCSF IT leadership to broadcast these free services to a website managers' listserv or other target group? A "top-down" message from leadership to the IT community might help encourage broader use of this free service, with no financial outlay. Katja Reuters has already been very effective and proactive about promoting this feature:

From John Maa's Gen'l Surgery Dept. page: “View All Publications at UCSF Profiles (Powered by CTSI)” - the embedded link towards the middle of the page is a great example of use of, and credit to, the data feed

From UCSF’s Center for AIDS Research (CFAR)

From UCSF’s San Francisco General Hospital

This would add visibility both to profilees and to the CTSI's great resources for investigators. This visibility among both parties would hopefully facilitate further collaboration across the organization.

Commenting is closed.

Adding "Mentoring Outreach" or "Collaboration Outreach" Star Rating

Proposal Status: 

Some sites like Yahoo Answers, the Microsoft Developers' product reviews and Yelp reviews, rate members based on frequency or helpfulness of their suggestions or reviews.

Is there a way to track how many times a site viewer emails a given profilee, after having searched using the pulldown menus? For example, after having searched for "Faculty Mentoring" in the pull down menu, a site viewer might use the contact info on the Profiles site to email a potential mentor. Ideally, the Profiles site would track frequency of emails (via Profiles) to a particular mentor, generated from this type of search.

This profilee would have a "Mentor Outreach Rating" which would show, say, three maximum stars for three or more emails. This would be similar to those crowd sourcing and review community sites which rate users based on, and thus reward members for, frequency of postings. This would encourage profilees to update their narratives and other text fields (on which "Faculty Mentoring" seems to base its search) to include info on "mentoring". It would also add visibility to the mentoring services offered by profilees. 

Similarly, if the site tracks the number of emails to a profilee, generated by (after) a search for "Global Health" (by specific country), we could roughly equate the number of email transmissions to a number of potential collaborations resulting from this search. The site would then generate a rating (three stars/three or more emails) for "Collaboration Outreach".

In each case, we would make it clear that the rating is based only on number of emails generated. Since many UCSF investigators are so metrics-driven, having a transparent measure of outreach efforts might encourage profilees to maintain and update their Profiles frequently. This would be a free and very user-friendly way to increase the visibility of, and traffic to the Profiles, while simultaneously rewarding profilees for frequent site visits and updates.

Commenting is closed.

Expand links (URLs) from citations to open access and data sharing repositories

Proposal Status: 

The current Profiles system only allows adding links (URLs) from citations entered manually, not through the automated PubMed feature.  Allowing faculty to add multiple links to each publication would be useful.  It would be even more useful to add tools to add links to open access and secure data sharing repositories.  In particular, these should link to open access repositories and supplementary materials or resources.  UCSF and other institutions have open access publication policies in which faculty are now required to give publishers limited licenses to their work instead of unlimited copyright. Data sharing requirements also exist for federally funded studies; links to secure data repositories or documents describing how to access the data would be helpful.  Some projects develop software programs, questionnaire instruments, training manuals, or other important research resources which journals may not publish due to space considerations or may not provide information or links to more details.


In addition, the PubMed citation list in Profiles should pull and display the PubMedCentral identification numbers (PMCIDs) that are assigned when the publication is deposited into the National Institutes of Health Manuscript System (NIHMS) open access repository, as required by federal law for federally supported research.   Having this information in Profiles would be very helpful for preparing biosketches for NIH Progress Reports and new grant applications.

Commenting is closed.

"deep text" searchable "Narrative" and "Faculty Mentoring" fields

Proposal Status: 

I have been promoting and using this tool predominately as a mechanism to connect mentees with career mentors within our home department.  Of course those who are interested in serving as career mentors must create specific text in both their "Narrative" and "Faculty Mentoring" fields of their profile.  These paragraphs provide a rich source of information about mentors beyond whatever words appear in their publication titles, keywords, etc.  For example, mentors can elect to disclose things about their personal life (e.g. sexual orientation, whether they have kids, hobbies, work-life balance issues, etc.). 

I would love it if the "search by research topic function" could "deep-text" search from these two fields.  Or perhaps there could be a separate search function if more feasible/viable?


It takes a team mentorship approach, so I believe this added functionality would increase the utility of the Profiles tool for mentees seeking adequate mentorship, especially to augment their research mentorship!  

Commenting is closed.

Twitter Widget

Proposal Status: 

I think it'd be useful to add a widget for faculty and staff to share Twitter feeds through Profiles, especially folks who maintain and manage social media across the University.  Perhaps even a way to pull the information at UCSF centrally, a sort of Twitter hub using Profiles as the primary source of data.  


I know this functionality already exists to some extent on various sites, but similar to the "co-authors" and "same department" tabs that come up on the right, this could be a way of further integrating concordant research and researchers, perhaps even agregating similar research topics.  For instance, if a researcher chose a certain amount of hashtags to follow, this widget could pull together similar voices at UCSF who are working on the same topic.  


It has a clear external value for those trying to navigate the (daunting) institution from Profiles, but also of value to the UCSF faculty or staff as a method of networking.

Commenting is closed.

Highlight Selected Publications

Proposal Status: 

Function:  to be able to flag/select top 5-10 publications to showcase at the top, with the complete list included.

Example of what we did at the Dept of Radiology with Grants:

Highlighting selected chosen publications, while still maintaining complete list.


Impact:  Give researchers ability to show case their 5 top most relevant or most pertinent publications first.


Commenting is closed.

Education and Training Field

Proposal Status: 

Feature: Add fields similar to Honors and Awards, but for Education and Training.  Listing the following by dates:

Education and Training
Medical School
Medical License


Impact:  Shares education, training, degrees, experience with similar background.

Commenting is closed.

Publication Formatting

Proposal Status: 

Formatting proposal:  To format publication entries to resemble similar format as PubMed's more closely, clearly delineating publication title, author, etc. with bold, and underlines.


Impact:  Allows easier gleaning of information (title and author) for consistent viewing from profiles to PubMed.

Commenting is closed.

Awards and Honors Formatting

Proposal Status: 

Formatting issues:  Currently the entry fields for Honors and Awards do not mirror the profile published view.  For example, the entry field for Name comes before Institution, but on the published profile, the Institution is listed first.  I also have to add a hyphen (-) to the beginning of the Name entry, otherwise there is no delineation from Institution and Name of award.  Another formatting inconsistency are the awards listed from past to lasted in edit mode, but reversed when viewed published.


Impact:  These are aesthetics issues, and may make the editing experience a little less jarring.

Commenting is closed.

Allowing Faculty Member to Add Link(s) to Moodle, TICR, or Other Online Forums or Resources

Proposal Status: 

A growing number of faculty members are teaching online. Might it be helpful to allow them to add, to their profiles, a link to their forums, classrooms, blogs or other resources, as hosted in the Moodle/Collaborative Learning Environment, Training in Clinical Research (TICR) or other sites? In some cases (e.g., some Moodle classrooms), the sites will stay open indefinitely to allow the faculty members to use them as "permanent" repositories for videotaped lectures, articles, texts, PowerPoint presentations, and other course material.

I understand that a profilee can add up to five websites to his/her profile. I wonder if adding a section just for online education links would encourage more faculty members to add those specific links.

We would create an algorithm that asks if the researcher has any online learning resources. If so, a second field would appear in which the profile could input his/her own URL(s). The help text (and the “How Profiles Works” page) would offer suggested links, including those I’ve typed above, among others. The default visibility setting for this field would be “hidden” so as not to discriminate against those faculty members who are non-adopters of online education.

This would be inexpensive (or no-cost) and user-directed. It would allow profilees to share their online learning resources more easily with their students, mentees and alums. More importantly, it would also advertise the expanding role of the University on the leading edge of online education.

Commenting is closed.

Sharing and Collaborative highlighting, commenting, annotating of manuscripts and internet full-text articles

Proposal Status: 

Problem. Researchers spend a lot of time reading articles, but it's increasingly difficult to keep up with the explosion of information (volume, velocity, variety). Pubmed and other tools exist for culling articles relevant to our interests, but might generate more results than one has time to read. Often, while reading an article, one might wish to discuss part of it with a colleague or forward it for some interesting detail. However, an emailed pdf or link to an article leaves a recipient with a large amount of matter to read and to further cross-reference with the sender's comments.


Suggested Feature, Utility. If highlighting, comments and annotations can be overlaid on, or linked to specific parts of, an internet full-text article- and viewed openly (or by a chosen audience)- that will make it easier and more time-efficient for scientists to share. discover and discuss new information. It will also enable transparent critique of information. Possibly, this system could be used to save the article as a complex of "original article"+Extras/Comments, or print to a pdf file or appropriate digital format. Lastly, scientists will have the option of sharing articles of mutual interest, complete with Comments to their social networks. Or, even solicit comments by linking to the articles from their Profile pages. "Social commenting" can also include "Like" or "Not Like" etc buttons to rate the +Extras/Comments appended to an article.


Potential issues. Institutional library subscriptions often dictate whether scientists at any given institution may or may not access the full-text of an article. This idea may initially be implemented on open-access articles, eg. freely accessible via Pubmed.

Abstracts are often always accessible to all, and many institutions share materials via interlibrary loan. So, possibly, the +Extras/Comments electronic versions of articles, or printable files, can still be shared.

Commenting is closed.

External Collaborator tool.

Proposal Status: 

I would like to propose a tool for representing external collaboration among researchers.  An academic may collaborate with researchers at universities other than their own, or with researchers within industry. Currently these interactions are not represented within a single institution's Vivo or Profiles RNS instance. For example, Vivo and Profiles RNS typically display very few collaborations for a researcher new to an institution, even when the researcher is well-connected.

I propose a gadget that allows a researcher to enter the Vivo RDF URI and collaboration type (e.g., co-author, advisor, or advisee) of an external collaborator.  It would then automatically populate an "External Collaborators" section on the researcher's profile using the collaborator's RDF. This would have the advantage of enabling new researchers to expand their profiles, and it would allow all researchers to provide a more accurate representation of their work.

Additionally, it may be possible to further extend this gadget by adding external collaborations to the triple tables within the research networking tool.  This would serve to add the collaborations to a researcher's RDF, which in turn would be a step towards creating a global distributed VIVO network.

Commenting is closed.

Suggestions for improving Profiles

Proposal Status: 

1. Extra Titles
Proposal: Added Extra Titles field may be useful for researcher who have multiple titles, and/or do research in multi-displinary fields. Example: Extra titles may include Vice-chair of a committee, PI of labs, Faculty of multiple department.


2. Research Interests
Proposal: Add a field for Research Interests. This will help in stating clearly the area of research expertise.


3. Expertise/Specialty
Proposal: Add Expertise/Specialty field


4. Narrative links capabilities
Proposal: Allow links in the body of Narrative

Commenting is closed.

ORCID gadget

Proposal Status: 

With ORCID launching in October, there is motivation for both VIVO and Profiles to actively support what is hoped to be major community shift to use of unique author IDs.  This gadget could be added to user profile pages to:


(a) encourage and facilitate ORCID registration,


(b) display that someone has registered an ORCID as well as link to it, and


(c) help to keep local and ORCID profiles in sync.


There are probably other benefits to attaching an ORCID to a VIVO or Profiles user page in terms of things like connected SEO, web indexing, and facilitating linking of open data in general.


See also contest proposal for "Harmonize Profiles Gadget".

Commenting is closed.

Citation Integration Widget

Proposal Status: 

The main idea behind the Citation Integration Widget would be to integrate and organize access to citations from publications of VIVO users. The word widget is a bit of an understatement in the amount of work that would be required to program such a large scale platform, but it would consist of the following:


A citation template would be used, which fills out the information of a citation form a VIVO user, and leaves the rest to the widget (current date, date accessed, page # and sentence) 

VIVO users who have linked publications would set up a quick citation template.

VIVO users who link or upload future publications would have to do a quick citation template as a requirement.

A VIVO user who wants to use the intelligent or literal content of the publication can do so quickly and seamlessly by the use of hashtags (#) or the use of another integrated function. The system would pull the template automatically and perform the in text citation while also filling in the "resources" section. 

The in text citations, as well as the resources, would be live links to the VIVO user's publication - to the exact line even.


The long term objective would be to effectively organize citation information and seek to improve the tedious, traditional, manual method of citation today. This could be spread across many platforms, and its impact would be vast since it is another massive improvement in the quality of how scientific knowledge is shared and used.

Commenting is closed.

Using Twitter data in combination with search results

Proposal Status: 

This gadget is designed to use the Twitter API and RDF data from search results conducted on the UCSF Profiles site to return relevant data about search. Using the query terms, the gadget will pull relevant data from currently trending tweets and display these results along with the search results. We would like to be able to highlight the differences in tweet content so that tweets featuring links to articles, resources, and conferences are given priority. 

Commenting is closed.