Tag page: not-useful

Reading discard

Non-coding RNA detection methods combined to improve usability, reproducibility and precision.
Peter Raasch, Ulf Schmitz, Nadja Patenge, Julio Vera, Bernd Kreikemeyer and Olaf WolkenhauerEmail http://bmcbioinformatics.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/1471-2105-11-491

Has usability in the title but is tool-focused, not really usability focused.

Reading - bioinformatics tools analysis framework at EMBL-EBI

A new bioinformatics analysis tools framework at EMBL–EBI

Mickael Goujon, Hamish McWilliam, Weizhong Li, Franck Valentin, Silvano Squizzato, Juri Paern and Rodrigo Lopez* http://nar.oxfordjournals.org/content/38/suppl_2/W695.short

Why not useful?

The paper itself is fine, but focuses on describing a suite of tools with a common interface, rather than any specific usability analysis. There were a few brief notes about user friendly interactivity - wizards, meaningful error messages, etc. but this was not the focus of the paper.

The only other thing of any real note was that they had a UI and APIs, allowing both user friendly and programmatic access.

Reading: CLI usability guidelines

Seemann, Torsten. “Ten recommendations for creating usable bioinformatics command line software.” GigaScience 2.1 (2013): 1-3. APA

This paper is written by someone with experience of CLI bioinformatics tools, covering 10 guidelines for greater CLI usability. Whilst I think I’m typically concerned with UIs, this may also be relevant.

They cover providing useful feedback a well a general programming-relevant guidelines like not hardcoding, managing dependencies, etc.

Overall these are reasonable and decent guidelines but probably not something I’ll refer to in the future.

Reading list discard

Veretnik, Stella, J. Lynn Fink, and Philip E. Bourne. “Computational biology resources lack persistence and usability.” PLoS computational biology 4.7 (2008).


Why not useful?

Sure, usability is lacking. This is known. But there is too much focus on the lack of persistence, e.g. outdated databases that aren’t maintained when grants run out. I care more about usability flaws - specifics - than the grant politics surrounding it. (Don’t get me wrong, I care about grants a lot, but I’m not sure that this is the context I’m looking for.)

Reviewed: 18 March 2016.