GSoC/GCI Archive
Google Summer of Code 2010

Marine Biological Laboratory Biodiversity Informatics Group-Encyclopedia of Life Project

Web Page:

Mailing List:

The Marine Biological Laboratory (MBL - is an international center for research, education, and training in biology. The oldest private marine laboratory in the country, the MBL currently supports a year-round staff of more than 275 scientists and support staff working in such fields as cell and developmental biology, ecology, microbiology, molecular evolution, global infectious disease, informatics, neurobiology, and sensory physiology. The Biodiversity Informatics Group at the MBL is creating the software behind the Encylopedia of Life (EOL - - a single portal providing information on all 1.9 million known species. The infrastructure is seamlessly aggregating data from thousands of sites into species pages in the Encyclopedia using novel informatics tools to capture, organize, and reshape knowledge about biodiversity. The group collaborates with data providers. The information is then indexed and recombined for expert and non-expert users alike using aggregation technology to bring together different data elements from remote sites. All of the code related to the EOL is open source and available via Google Code ( ) or GitHub ( ).


  • Monitoring awareness through social media I propose to develop a social media monitoring system as a web application for primary investigators or others (the user) to use to analyze the social impact of outreach activities. Each user will have a password-protected account that can be accessed through a web browser to view accumulated data which is analyzed in real-time. The user will be presented with a variety of tools they can use to visualize, filter, order, and export the returned data.
  • Plugin system and machine tags for Shapado The Encyclopedia of Life wants to use Shapado, a FOSS project, as a Q&A system for its database of species. Many of the customizations needed are not of general interest so, to avoid feature creep, this GSoC project intends to create a plugin system for Shapado to allow creation and sharing of features while keeping a clean and solid core. It also intends to implement machine tags as a first plugin, making the EOL-Shapado integration more immediately possible.