UCSC and Galaxy at ASHG, giant training

ashg_ucsc_bk2.jpgAt the ASHG meeting last week, teams from UCSC Genome Browser and Galaxy presented the biggest software training I have ever seen! They had a huge meeting room with all these wifi antennae, and they had most people on laptops (some just sat in to watch). There were a few connection issues with the wireless. The computers ranged from high end macs to teeny netbooks–it was tough to know how to help everyone who needed wireless help. Especially for me when the menu was in Japanese.

Then both teams were working on live instances of their sites–UCSC used the Santa Cruz site as well as their mirrors to lighten the load. But at the second session there were so many people it looked to me like the mirrors were going down and starting to give odd answers to queries. The Galaxy session on the first day walloped the UCSC site, and also seemed to be making the instance they set up for the ASGH training on the Galaxy site sweat.

But it was a real logistical feat to get this together and running. And there was a lot of interest in this. I would love to see more sessions like this at future ASHG meetings. People are craving software training. After this session people came down to our booth asking for more training–it was great for us :)

I would like to see the groups broken into newbies and more advanced users. Newbies get lost really quickly and they are the ones I’d like to reach the most–they have so much to gain from getting started with these great tools. And advanced users get frustrated having to see stuff they already know–they are ready to go further.

If you want to have a look at some of the material that was covered you can check out the Galaxy materials at this site–I don’t know how long it will be live, but there are presentation examples and screencasts of the ground they were covering. You can see the web page and also download the materials as a PDF. These include:

Of course you can always access the sponsored training on the UCSC software on our site as well: http://openhelix.com/ucsc