I looked at what you are proposing here, and it is quite exciting. I have 
recently been working a fair amount with RDF and SPARQL, and it can be very 

You asked for some feedback on the interface. I think this is a good start. 
Given the number of possible permutations of thirteen (mostly) categorical 
attributes, the interface you designed would be great for navigating through 
reasonably large image collections. For smaller collections of images, I think 
the number of attributes would be a bit cumbersome for the average user.

The one attribute that users would most certainly want to be able to specify is 
one related to the software available on the image. And this would need to be a 
multi-valued field. (i.e. "I want MatLab, R and at least version 1.6 of JAVA's 
runtime environment")

The way I would go about this (borrowing from the language of search engines) 
is to see these attributes as "facets" that help narrow a search. The value of 
each facet would be a constraint in the logic of your query, and these 
constraints could be turned on or off, affecting the result list.

It should be possible to design the interface so that you could effectively 
eliminate all four of the blue rectangular buttons. "List all images" would be 
achieved by removing all selected constraints; it would also be the initial 
state of the interface. "Discover images that match" would not be necessary if 
the result list is auto-updated when any constraint is added or removed. From a 
user's perspective I'm not sure how "Negotiate and Finalize Image" differs from 
"Reserve Image". Either of them could be achieved by clicking on the name of 
the relevant SPARQL result.

>From a systems architecture perspective, it seems that you anticipate having 
>this tool running in an external (e.g. Joseki) service. I assume that the 
>service would query the VCL API (on behalf of a given user) to identify the 
>list of all accessible images along with the relevant attributes for each 
>image. By extending the API slightly, I can see how this could work very well. 
>Using the VCL's API, reservations could also be made and managed directly 
>through this brokering tool.

Thanks for preparing this information. I look forward to seeing more!


Aaron Coburn
Systems Administrator and Programmer
Academic Technology Services, Amherst College

On May 23, 2012, at 5:56 PM, Karuna P Joshi wrote:


I have designed the User interface for the VCL cloud broker tool and have
uploaded the screenshot of this interface into the JIRA issues wiki.
I look forward to feedback on the interface from VCL developers.

On a related note, how does one assign the JIRA issue ?  I want to assign
this issue (VCL-577) to myself, but the field appears un-editable.

Karuna Pande Joshi
PhD Candidate,

Reply via email to