User driven development of tranSMART - Glowing Bear

Reflections on a collective exercise

In these last two months our Data Warehouse team organized two user meetings around tranSMART and Glowing Bear: the first took place at the European i2b2 tranSMART Academic Users Group Conference in Geneva. The second, the tranSMART - Glowing Bear user meeting, was hosted in Utrecht at our main office. An international audience shared how they are using tranSMART and Glowing Bear and where they want the platform to go next.

The European i2b2 tranSMART Academic Users Group Conference

Following the success of the past five editions, the 6th edition of the AUG conference was hosted in Geneva (Switzerland) on October 31st and November 1st, 2018.

Traditionally, this event brings together a community of clinicians, academics, researchers and engineers, from all over Europe and beyond, who are using i2b2 and/or tranSMART to leverage the development of personalized medicine.

In the two days conference, prestigious speakers explored implementations in the context of i2b2 and/or tranSMART. The Hyve presented a talk on Glowing Bear: “Cohort selection on family relationships, absolute and relative time with Glowing Bear 1.0”. Moreover, we organized a lunch session on Glowing Bear user experiences, in which impressions and suggestions of the Glowing Bear users were collected.

Many were impressed with the intuitive and modern Glowing Bear user interface and top requested additional capabilities were identified in visual analytics, and the need for extensibility. Both enchantments align perfectly with the developments of Glowing Bear already underway, as The Hyve is proudly bringing visual analytics into the solution via the Fractalis platform. Fractalis is also one of the places where extensions can be easily made easily, without need for changing the wider application, as well as the micro-service export module for Glowing Bear.

TranSMART - Glowing Bear user meeting

As a follow up of the Glowing Bear user experiences in Geneva, The Hyve hosted a meeting on December 12, 2018, meant to give other tranSMART and Glowing Bear stakeholders, from The Netherlands and beyond, the opportunity to share and discuss their use cases and to find points of collaboration.

The program included presentations from the different stakes (Health-RI, NTR, PMC, Philips, LUMC, IMI PIONEER project, DIFUTURE consortium, and i2b2/TranSMART foundation) on the following topics:

  • What is the bigger goal of your organization in which tranSMART and/or Glowing Bear play a role?
  • What role do these tools currently play in it?
  • What is your vision for continuing this in the coming year(s)?

The content of the presentations was a great input to kick off the plenary discussion in which alignment on the use cases and features wish-list for tranSMART and Glowing Bear applications were the hot topics.

Besides the lessons learned from Geneva new focus areas to collaborate on in tranSMART and Glowing Bear were defined, including large multi-dimensional data (omics, images and sensor data), flexible data access rules and data loading and harmonisation.

What’s next?

Both meetings showed that there is a strong interest from multiple types of stakeholders in the tranSMART and Glowing Bear applications. In the new year, The Hyve will make sure to stay in contact with everyone that show specific interests in certain topics, and set up more focused discussions.

Written by

Elisa Cirillo