iPlant: Not an Apple product but could help grow more apples

NSF pledges another $50M for Big Data project in biological science

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A multi-institution effort to share and digest Big Data about plants and animals in the name of feeding a growing global population has been awarded a second $50 million grant by the National Science Foundation to continue its work.

The iPlant Collaborative, headquartered at the University of Arizona’s 12-year-old BIO5 Institute, is designed "to create a national cyberinfrastructure for the biological sciences." Other participating organizations include the Texas Advanced Computing Center at the University of Texas, Austin, Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in New York, and University of North Carolina Wilmington.

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The effort, which brings together life science researchers and computer scientists, provides applications and storage capabilities needed to handle huge data sets, such as those involving genomes.

Bob Brown tracks network research in his Alpha Doggs blog and Facebook page, as well on Twitter and Google +.

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