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

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This is an outline for a possible 7-10 year vision for the Bamboo Community. 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, 3 year Implementation Phase (from 2010-2012). This document is designed to solicit community input, and is a draft in progress. 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 about every 7-10 days and are 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.

Bamboo Program Document, version 0.2

Executive Summary

1.  Vision
What are the major opportunities and problems that the Bamboo Community is addressing, and what is the future we wish to create for higher education institutions working together to support teaching and research in the arts, humanities, and interpretive social sciences.

2.  Scope of Work
How do all of the major elements or the Bamboo Program work together.

Major Activities of Bamboo

3.  Bamboo as a Forum (Cyberinfrastructure Ring I)

  • 3.1.  Scholarly Network
    The place for people to discover, explore, and connect with other people and groups across the Bamboo community.  The Bamboo Scholarly Network may be implemented through interconnecting existing social networking tools, including the use of plug-ins and/or widgets based on open interface standards that will allow the Scholarly Network to be easily incorporated into existing portals, virtual research environments, or other research workflow systems and tools.
  • 3.2.  Scholarly Narratives
    A growing body of scholars' stories about the use of digital technologies across the arts, humanities, and interpretive social sciences.  These narratives serve as one critical entry point for learning what can be done and for rapidly sharing updates on work in progress.  This Scholarly Narratives hub will interconnect with digital Recipes, Tools Guide, Educational Materials, and Services Atlas described below.
  • 3.3.  Recipes (Workflows)
    Recipes draw on the Scholarly Narratives to propose general tasks that scholars want to do with information technology. The Scholarly Narratives are the stories scholars told about what they wanted to do with technology in their research and teaching. The Recipes draw on these and describe a generalized way (a workflow) of doing something important to a scholar. These Recipes are put together by the community of scholars who use technology. They are the Bamboo Community's ideas about how to best get real academic tasks done.
  • 3.4.  Tools and Content Guide
    The guide allows one to both publish information about, and to discover, tools and content sources that are of value for research and teaching.  Scholarly Narratives and Recipes will draw from and point to this community annotated list of tools and content resources.  This registry becomes another "view," like that of the Scholarly Network, Narratives, and Recipes, on what is possible and what materials are available to help.
  • 3.5.  Other Educational and Curricular Materials
    A place for the dissemination and discussion of other related educational and curricular materials that can help students, faculty, library and technology professionals, and others to best integrate developing digital content and tools into researching, teaching, and public service.
  • 3.6.  Integrated Community Environment(s)
    The environment where Scholarly Network, Narratives, Recipes, Tools/Content Guide, Educational Materials can be found.  The environment may take two general forms: (1) as a user interface that Bamboo develops and is run for the community and/or (2) by developing each of these elements as information widgets/gadgets that can be incorporated into existing Virtual Research and Collaborative Environments.

4. Bamboo as a Facilitator and Developer of Shared Technology Services (Cyberinfrastructure Ring II)

  • 4.0 Introduction
  • 4.1.  Services Atlas
    The Services Atlas records and delivers community input (Scholarly Narratives,Recipes, Activities, Tool examples, Content/Resource examples, Service Families, Service Candidates, Service Contracts, and extant Services - including community-contributed references to information outside the formal bounds of Bamboo) in easily updated, linked, annotatable forms that may be mixed, matched, categorized, and re-categorized in order to render the community's understanding of scholarly practice accessible from the multiple perspectives of diverse stakeholders native to Bamboo. Dynamic ability to incorporate and view evolving input and analysis, and quickly and clearly draw connections to broader context, will benefit faculty, librarians, funders, institutional leaders, technical architects, and service developers. These varied views of a changing landscape will enable informed governance by key stakeholders in_ arts, humanities, and qualitative social sciences scholarship. The services atlas is not a user interface, web page, or application; it is exposed as a set of services that may be presented in a tool, page, portal, or interface of one's choice, including but not limited to the Bamboo Exchange.
  • 4.2.  Bamboo Exchange
    The Bamboo Exchange will serve as a focal point for information about services, tools, and content, including but not limited to services incorporated in the Service Atlas; and as a venue for resource exchange between marketplace participants. Incentives to participate in this marketplace will include a community-driven award system (including monetary rewards), expanded metrics about the way services are used by scholars and campuses, publicity, channels of communication to and feedback from the community of institutions and disciplines participating in Bamboo, as well as an avenue for access to Bamboo's experimental "incubator" service-deployment platform (cf. Local and Incubator Services).
  • 4.3.  Shared Services Lifecycle
    Sub-section 4.3.1, "Local and Incubator Services," describes early phases of discovery, adoption, or development of services of interest to the Bamboo Community. Sub-section 4.3.2, "Common Services," describes a phase of service refinement that addresses concerns like sustainability, standards-compliance, and reliability. Sub-section 4.3.3, "Bamboo Service-Delivery Appliances and the Bamboo Cloud," describes how Bamboo intends to make services available for use.
  • 4.4.  Tool and Application Alignment Partnerships
    Bamboo will partner with interested tool and application projects and developers to wrap and/or deliver functionality (automation capabilities) as services that can be deployed alongside, and interoperate with, Bamboo Common Services. By exposing capabilities from other projects and providers as Bamboo-affiliated services, broader and more diverse uptake of those capabilities is more likely; such exposure will also enrich the pool of service candidates being considered for refinement into Bamboo Common Services. These partnerships will deepen and broaden the Bamboo ecosystem with expertise and experience rooted in domain- and function-centric communities.
  • 4.5.  Content Interoperability Partnerships
    Bamboo will partner with interested content (digital resource) providers to enable Bamboo Common Services to discover, search, and appropriately operate on their diverse and distributed holdings. Similarly, partnerships with interested repository platform providers will enable Bamboo Common Services to discover, search, and appropriately operate on resources hosted on platforms of strategic value to communities of arts, humanities, and qualitative social science scholarship. These efforts will likely take the form of modeling, implementing, and deploying service interfaces to expose strategically identified content stores and platforms. Bamboo-facilitated exposure of content via service interfaces will broaden uptake and trans-disciplinary opportunities for scholarship, as well as suggest additional candidates for refinement into Bamboo Common Services.

5. Bamboo as an Organization (Cyberinfrastructure Ring III)

  • 5.1.  Introduction
  • 5.2.  An Ecosystem of Projects and Initiatives
  • 5.3.  Structure
  • 5.4.  Liaisons
  • 5.5.  Governance

6. Appendices

  • 6.1. Scholarly Practices
  • 6.2. Services Atlas
  • 6.3. Planning Project Participants
  • 6.4. Planning Project Demonstrators

7. Glossary

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  1. Unknown User (

    Hello - here are a few comments on this document, offered with the goal of increasing its clarity for other readers.

    There seems to be some fuzziness/overlap between 3.1 Scholarly Network and 3.6 Integrated Community Environment(s) (which seems to be called Bamboo Community Environment elsewhere).  Both give the flavor of being a place where stuff exists, and both speak of implementation via widgets.  Can this be clarified?

    For 3.4 Tools and Content Guide, shouldn't we assume that this is best coordinated with any other efforts by digital arts and humanities folks to create such a registry (as called for at the September 2005 Summit on Digital Tools for the Humanities ( held at the University of Virginia)?

    For 4.1 Services Atlas, I trust this is the physical mechanism behind the resources delivered in section 3 Bamboo as a Forum?  Maybe clarifying this relationship at a high level would help remove apparent overlap between 4.1 and section 3.

    For 4.2 Bamboo Exchange, this seems to overlap with 3.6 Community Environment as I read these.  Maybe this relationship could also be clarified.  And what is the nature of monetary rewards that are envisioned here?

    Just a suggestion that for section 4.4, perhaps using "Interoperability" instead of "Alignment" will give a clearer meaning and will parallel the use of "Interoperability" in section 4.5.

    Finally, in section 4.5, where it speaks of "modeling, implementing and deploying service interfaces to expose those ... content stores and platforms" - I wonder if this is the right way to think of this.  Might a more productive avenue be to have Bamboo adopt emerging standards that the providers of those "content stores and platforms" would be naturally adopting to make their stuff discoverable in general, rather than somehow having Bamboo create Bamboo-specific ways of doing so?

    1. Unknown User (


      Thanks for these. I'll respond to the easy ones:

      • Sec 3.6 is supposed to be called "Bamboo Community Environment" - we missed a consistency edit on this page ... thanks for catching it.
      • RE: the role of the "Service Atlas," we have a graphic cooking that ought to clarify the relationships between it and the entities / repositories / registries called out in Sec 3. That graphic will almost certainly (98%) be included in Draft 1, scheduled for publication at the end of this week.
      • Making the standards-adoption orientation of 4.5 explicit is on the mark. We'll make it so in the next draft.

      Your attentive eye is much appreciated...

  2. Unknown User (

    Thanks for the draft. Two notes:

    1. I appreciate the changes in the governance model described in 5.5. I feel it is improved from the draft at workshop 3 and addresses some of the membership feedback concerns I raised at that workshop. Thank you! 
    2. Although there's still much to be fleshed out in the above proposal, what seems missing to me is some sort of context statement where Bamboo is placed in the context of other digital humanities/social sciences/library/technology consortium or cooperatives. Such a statement would do three things: acknowledge the landscape we have currently to show that we're not 'reinventing the wheel'; identify relevant partner groups for future forum/facilitation/building etc.; and demonstrate how Bamboo differs from these entities to support its existence. Or am I missing something? Perhaps this does exist somewhere? Thoughts?