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developerWorks: Build an LSID Authority on Linux

Jun 05, 2003, 11:00 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Stefan Atev)

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"The amount of biological data being created today is mind-boggling. As a biologist or bioinformaticist, you probably know of places around the network that provide very useful resources for your task at hand--but remembering the different ways to access this information is often a productivity drain. Maybe you write a few Perl scripts or know someone who will provide you with some code for this or a procedure for that. At this point, you may be thinking that coming up with a common way of naming and finding this data is the only way you will be able to remain a biologist and not a programmer. Of course, the value of having a common way to identify data extends beyond bioinformatics, but for this article we will stay within the life sciences.

"The Life Sciences Identifier (LSID) is an I3C Uniform Resource Name (URN) specification in progress. You can read more about the specification at the I3C (see Resources for a link). Conceptually, LSID is a straightforward approach to naming and identifying data resources stored in multiple, distributed data stores in a manner that overcomes the limitations of the naming schemes that are in use today.

"An LSID resolver is a software system that implements an agreed-upon LSID resolution protocol in order to allow higher-level software to locate and access the data uniquely named by any LSID URN. The 'server' side of this resolver solution is called an LSID authority. The client stacks and an example client, the LSID LaunchPad, are provided by the LSID Resolution Protocol Project.

"In this article, you'll see how to create your own LSID Authority using the LSID resolver stack for Java..."

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