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This wiki space contains archival documentation of Project Bamboo, April 2008 - March 2013.

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This is an outline for Phase 1 (24 months) of a Bamboo Implementation Proposal.
The purpose of this document is to provide information to institutions and organizations participating in the Bamboo Planning Process so that they can help determine (1) the long term future of Bamboo and (2) define what activities Bamboo will carry out in its first implementation phase. The intent of this document is to solicit community input toward the ongoing development and revision of the implementation proposal. As this is an early draft, it is not yet a commitment to carry out all or any of this work.

Please note that we are updating this document frequently based on wide ranging input from the Bamboo community. These updates will occur periodically and will be indicated as ".1", ".2", ".3", etc updates. In addition, we will occasionally make major document revisions. These are noted as "1.X", "2.X", and so forth. Between major document revisions there may be some inconsistencies in language used between the sections of the document.

4.1 - Scholarly Networking

4.1.1 Summary

The Scholarly Networking area of work will create two types of software: a set of small components, which we're calling "gadgets", that will plug in to existing research environments and social platforms; and a group of new services, which will filter information from several sources (including the Atlas) and supply relevant and interesting material to the gadgets. Together, these gadgets and services will build connections among people from all professions within the Arts & Humanities research community, for the purpose of inspiring collaborations and discovering new resources across Bamboo and beyond. Several teams will develop these gadgets and connection services, each providing specific scholarship-centric networking and/or resource exchange functionality. The defining vision of the Scholarly Networking area is to actively deliver interesting and relevant connections directly into the places where scholars already do their work.

4.1.2 Description

The first year of work will focus on identifying, specifying, and creating gadgets and connection services which support relationships among individuals and projects. 

See summary -- further details on the gadget/plug-in concept, and its application to specific areas (TBD) of scholarship-oriented, social-networking-like functionality need to be added here. In addition, this section will elaborate the connections between the Atlas and Scholarly Networking, including the back-end data store, the use of the Bamboo Services Platform, etc.

4.1.3 Value

Throughout the Bamboo planning process, many individuals and institutional teams expressed interest in using technology to keep up with what others are doing and to connect with other scholars, technologists, and librarians within and across disciplines. Bamboo proposes to add value not by building its own scholarly networking environment, but rather by (1) finding ways to interconnect existing social networking tools and higher-education collaborative environments, (2) helping disciplinary societies and institutions to develop key data models required for exposing information about scholarly interests and activities in the humanities (e.g., biographical / CV information), (3) bringing together disciplinary societies in the humanities with key higher education technology initiatives, and (4) leveraging open standards and rapidly developing technologies in the social networking field.

Community thoughts, relevant narratives, and quotes from the workshops need to be added here.

4.1.4 Work Plan

More detail based on community conversations and reflections needs to be added throughout this section.

  • Explore: The Explore activity will identify opportunities for creating gadgets which connect to existing environments, creating a list of candidate gadgets, connection services, and potential partners. Individuals and institutions participating in the Explore activity will then develop narratives to describe how a scholar might use the gadgets and services they propose. Initial community design work has indicated two initial areas of focus, CV entries and research interests, although other areas of focus may also emerge. The CV entries portion of this area of work will, in collaboration with scholarly societies, focus on building connections among individuals based on the curriculum vitae data (which might come in multiple formats and from multiple sources). The research interests area of focus will concentrate on building connections from individuals to projects, resources, and opportunities. Important parters for the research interests area include granting agencies, humanities centers, and virtual research environment developers. One particular challenge in this area will be to balance the rigidity of controlled vocabulary with user-adaptable synonymy capability. Explore participants will examine these notions in much more detail, and seek to surface and consider other areas of focus.
  • Plan: In the initial year, Plan activity will involve selecting and providing detailed specifications for a subset of the areas of focus identified in the Explore activity. Participants will assess which areas will be most useful to scholars and provide the most value relative to the level of effort required -- those which minimize duplication of existing work, make use of existing and/or forthcoming Bamboo services, and can be released as an initial version after three to six months of development. Institutions and individuals participating in the Plan portion of this area of work will then establish work teams to carry out the projects they have specified, providing each work team with a charter and initial project plan that includes a full and detailed description of what the software should do, how it will interoperate with existing platforms and which ones, and a storyboard depiction of the human interface. In addition, participants in Plan will promote appropriate liaison activity with other organizations and efforts. Potential specifications and standards include OpenSocial, Facebook Connect, and/or JSR-168.
  • Build: The Build activity will involve developing the initial round of gadgets and connection services as selected by Plan participants and work to enact the possibilities brought to light by Explore -- this translates to a minimum of two gadgets and one connection service for each chosen direction. In all cases, Bamboo services will be targeted for eventual deployment in a cloud-based environment on the Bamboo Services Platform (see section 4.3, below).

Participation Layer

Work to Complete in First Quarter (1/2010-3/2010 )

Work to Complete in Second Quarter (4/2010-6/2010)

Work to Complete in Third Quarter (7/2010-9/2010)

Work to Complete in Fourth Quarter (10/2010-12/2010)


  • Investigate possible areas of focus (CV, research interest, other) and partnerships (societies, platform creators).
  • Develop narratives around these areas of focus and partnerships
  • Share these notions in the form of brief proposals to Plan participants, due by 3/31/2010.
  • Confirm and ratify final work team charters and specifications by 6/30/2010.
  • Test releases, especially focusing on how well they resemble the original narratives and notions. Give feedback to Build participants.
  • Test releases, especially focusing on how well they resemble the original narratives and notions. Give feedback to Build participants.


  • Investigate current standards, practices, and capabilities in this area in preparation for making choices about what to comply to and what to implement.
  • Construct a rubric for evaluating Explore proposals.
  • Evaluate proposals and resources. By 4/30/2010, select Explore proposals to implement.
  • Prepare Build charters and specifications for all chosen areas of work by 5/31/2010.
  • Confirm and ratify final work team charters and specifications by 6/30/2010.
  • Test releases, especially focusing on apparent use of standards and interoperability. Give feedback to Build participants.
  •  Test releases, especially focusing on apparent use of standards and interoperability. Give feedback to Build participants.


  • Take an inventory of available resources, including time available, levels of experience, and familiarities with languages and technologies. Prepare an assessment of these resources and supply to Plan by 3/31/2010.
  • Gather and prepare any necessary development tools and environments.
  • Respond to Build charters and specifications with questions, comments, and amendments by 6/15/2010.
  • Confirm and ratify final work team charters by 6/30/2010.
  • Develop and deploy gadgets and services in response to work team charters.
  • Release 0.1 is due 7/21/2010.
  • Release 0.5 (suitable for testing by Explore and Plan) is due 8/30/2010.
  • Release 0.9 (suitable for Bamboo community evaluation) is due 9/30/2010.
  • Release 1.0 is due 10/31/2010
  • Release 1.1, containing immediate fixes found during release, is due 11/15/2010
  • Release 1.5, containing a broader package of updates in response to feedback from the community, is due 12/15/2010
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  1. Unknown User (smatei)

    First thoughts. We need to be mindful of the possibility that many people of a certain generation might not be on any known social networking site. We should explore the possibility of using services that mash up nicely with  Google, Live/Bing, and Yahoo accounts. I mean, we need to target not only people with a dedicated social networking account (such as Facebook, LinkedIn or, but anyone with an email account supported by one of these large, general purpose, universal service companies. What I have in mind is something like the Google Friend Find tool, which could be embedded in sites of all kinds and people can create social networking ties just by following the same project through friend find.

     What do you think?

    1. Unknown User (

      Good point, and worth further discussion and thought. I'll add something into the draft we're about to publish, but it'll be more of a placeholder than anything else.