Top tips

By Becky Arnold, University of Sheffield 

By Alex Nenadic, Alan Williams, Robert Haines and Alasdair Gray of MyGrid, Anton Güntsch of the Freie Universität Berlin, and Aleksandra Pawlik of the Software Sustainability Institute.

You have a piece of data-processing code, it works well, and both your colleagues and other researchers think it is useful. So, you decide to turn it into a Web Service so that it can be used by anyone with Web access. Yet do you know how to go about it? These Top Tips will help you get started.

Quick and easy steps to help with your software and research.

By Mike Jackson, Software Architect.

My EPCC colleague, George Beckett, recently e-mailed me to comment that "I'm conscious that wikis typically deteriorate into a mess of conflicting/out-dated materials, if not managed closely". George asked whether the Institute had advice on good practices for using a wiki. So, for George and others with wiki worries, here are our top tips on using a wiki for a software project...

Scott Henwood, Director of Research Software at the Canadian funder CANARIE gives his tips on building better software.

"I joined CANARIE’s Research Software program more than three years ago after a long career in commercial/industrial software development. The experience so far has been eye-opening. At the implementation level, software development in an academic environment is pretty much the same as software development in a corporate environment. The environments that corporate and academic software developers work in, however, are very different.

As…

By Stephen Eglen, Software Sustainability Institute Fellow and senior lecturer University of Cambridge.

Late last year, I ran a workshop with the International Neuroinformatics Coordinating Facility (INCF) in Cambridge. It was regarded by all attendees as a success and it was suggested that we archive some tips for organising a small workshop. Here are those tips.

1. Get help with admin

We were incredibly lucky in that all the administration for the event was taken care of by the INCF, and in particular its program officer, Mathew Abrams. Everyone's travel plans were…

By Neil Chue Hong, Director.

The Software Sustainability Institute is proud to be associated with a major new paper on irreproducible research. The new paper is called "Top Tips to Make Your Research Irreproducible" by Neil Chue Hong, Tom Crick, Ian Gent and Lars Kotthoff, and is due to be published today (1 April) on arXiv. We present some excerpts of the paper with permission of the authors. Readers are encouraged to read the full version.

We have noticed (and contributed to) a number of manifestos, guides and top tips on how to make research reproducible; however, we…

You've created your software, it works and the response so far has been great. But now you want to make it available to a larger audience. How do you go about it?

You'll need to know how to package what you're trying to distribute. There is no point sharing your work if it is inaccessible to a new user, after all. Mike Jackson's blog post shows how to do this by making the package accessible and never forgetting that your users might not be as expert as you. You might also want to work with a technical writer to help create the best documentation.​

Obviously you'll need to…

By Simon Hettrick, Deputy Director.

Have you ever needed to answer a big question that's fuzzily defined and can only hope of being answered by combining the experiences and knowledge of a wide group of disparate experts?

Whenever this situation occurs at the Institute, we apply the perfect solution: an unconference (like our Collaborations Workshop). Rather than sitting through a dull series of presentations, the attendees at an unconference are in control of what they do and how the conference works. This makes the confernece adaptive, so that the shifting…

By Mike Jackson, Software Architect.

You have been developing software that is becoming more popular. But now you are struggling to balance the need to develop and support your software, against the need to do your research. How do you convince funders to give you money to recruit a software developer to keep your users happy?

Here are our top tips in the form of four sets of questions that, by answering, will help you to convince funders.

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