The Biomatrix: what it is

cherry at OPAL.MGH.HARVARD.EDU cherry at OPAL.MGH.HARVARD.EDU
Sun Jan 3 15:52:52 EST 1993


In article <1i7efsINN1hh at menudo.uh.edu>, davison at menudo.uh.edu (Dan Davison) writes:
>	The Matrix subsitutes reasoning by analogy for reasoning
>from first principles.  The proposal is to combine biological
>knowledge in three ways; (1) collect data into databases, and have the
>agencies that fund research get serious about the proper disposition
>of the knowledge they've been funding (such as requiring, as a
>condition of grant funding, any resulting data to be submitted to
>GenBank for nucleotide information; PIR for protein information; and
>Brookhaven for x-ray crystallographic information).

Is there any funding available for providing the resources that are
required that can contain the "knowledge they've been funding"? I
guess more to the point do the funding agencies share the view that
they should make these requirements, they would then have to fund the
databases and the personal required to organize the information. I can
think of projects funded by NIH, DOE and USDA to provide databases for
small specific sets of biological information. To my knowledge these
projects with the exception of GDB are pretty small funding
commitments. Funding for biology is obviously limited and there are
quite a few special interests which have strong lobbies for money.
However I am increasing puzzled by the small mandate for improved
information systems to allow biological knownledge to become
electronic. Can someone share some insight about policy within the
various funding agencies, or is it all moot until the Clinton
administration gets setup. I would also be interested in what the EC
is planning in this area.

Finally, what is the timeframe considered by the BioMatrix group.  Is
the BioMatrix another Xanadu project? Is this an endeavor that is
waiting for significance technology advancements in software
development or are there many active projects currently being pursued
with the Matrix as a goal. I'm well aware of many "database" efforts
but see these generally just trying to get a hold on sequence
information, I'm simplifying quite alot here, but my impression is
that their goals are far that proposed for the BioMatrix.

Mike Cherry



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