Many bioinformatics initiatives rely heavily on distributed communities of scientists and developers. What makes these communities successful? How can we harness their energy to develop scientific impact? While a compelling vision for the project is critical, effective open source communities must be able to cope with the diverse needs and demands of its members. Understanding the dynamics of remote collaborative interactions between community members is key to its success.
At the next ISMB conference (Intelligent Systems for Molecular Biology) in Boston we will organise a birds of a feather meeting (Sunday July 13, 2014 12:45 p.m. – 1:45 p.m.) to dissect the social engineering factors influencing the impact of biologically-inspired open source communities. Specifically we will focus on (i) the benefits/motivations for bioinformaticians participating in open collaborative projects and (ii) the features of higher and lower-impact communities in our field.
We will be gathering notes and sharing them in this blog.