NACSE Research Projects
NACSE engages in collaborative research with communities of scientists or
engineers. Projects focus on making scientific data and software more
useful, and understandable, to diverse audiences - including research
collaborators, scientists in other fields, students, and the general public.
Current projects fall into five general areas.
Connecting data and maps can bring new insight and understanding to
very large, complex data sets. NACSE interfaces make it possible for users
to explore geographical data more intuitively and productively, by
integrating databases with familiar methods of manipulating maps.
The usefulness of a scientific database can be increased dramatically by
adding tools so that users can access the data in ways that are most "natural"
for their expertise and interests. NACSE develops interfaces that give
multiple "personalities" to research data, making it appealing to different
types of audiences.
Researchers working on different aspects of a project or discipline have the
need to share results, view and comment on each other's progress, and
collaborate from distant locations. NACSE works with various scientific
groups to develop web-based portals
where users can jointly develop
experiments, computational models, and data repositories.
Large, expensive, and unique experimental equipment is needed for many types
of scientific and engineering research. Not all institutions have such
facilities, nor is it always possible to travel to a distant location to
use one-of-a-kind equipment. NACSE develops software that allows scientists
to participate in experiments from their own institutions.
Storing data in an online database and developing a web-based user interface
is one way to make data accessible to other researchers. But what about those
individuals who need to access data from unusual locations - such as from a
remote forest or the middle of an ocean? NACSE develops tools that allow
researchers to package up the information they will need in the field, so they
can carry it with them and access it flexibly using a laptop or handheld