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Re: Do we need Debian(-Med) machines?

Hello, here a first draft for an email that I considered to write to the 
bioinformatics conference contact at IBM. Andreas I would like to co-sign it 
and also Charles for both their feedback and to get the message across that 
we are a community. Nelson, Thijs? 

 * while intending to keep is short I happily accept ideas for improving the 
 * should we spike the Debian-Med main page with a reference to the Debian-Med 
Wiki page?


Dear  ...,

we met at the ISMB in Vienna where I learned a lot about your PowerPC-Cell 
platform and took the opportunity to introduce you to the Debian Linux 
Bioinformatics community. I asked for the possibility to grant access to such 
a machine to developers for the Debian community to promote that platform.
We agreed that it might be mutually beneficial to such establish closer ties 
with the Debian community and, if you are still interested, I can only offer 
to help evaluating possible routes to implement these.

There is a second not unrelated issue in which I perceive you as a potential 
ally. The developers from the Debian-Med community 
(http://www.debian.org/devel/debian-med/index.de.html) become increasingly 
aware that for their Bioinformatics support the next strategic move is the 
integration of public data with to the already available software. The 
frequent updates of the data paired with the considerable size of the data 
however prohibits their distribution via regular Debian channels and its 
mirrors. Furthermore, the indexing of data needs to be performed in strict 
synchronicity with the data and is considerably time consuming. To have such 
files available as Debian packages would solve these issues. May I bluntly 
ask if you would be prepared to help with a (non backuped) server for a 
community project that is addressing the provisioning of bioinformatics data 
packages for Debian Linux? Maybe on a Cell-based machine?

Some side thoughts: Bioinformatics Debian may experience a further boost with 
the advent of the BOSC liveCD (http://open-bio.org/wiki/BOSC/liveCD) which 
will be based on Debian. If essential bioinforamtics data can be seemlessly 
collected into packages, then a general acceptance of those may be beneficial 
for the local evaluation of scripts prior to the submission to deep computing 
facilities or grid computing in general.

Best regards

<whoever wants to contribute>

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