In <Bwqyz4.94p at usenet.ucs.indiana.edu> gilbertd at sunflower.bio.indiana.edu (Don Gilbert) writes:
>This is a list of the current Biology oriented gopher servers that I
>know of. If anyone has additions or corrections, please let me know.
In Finland there is a gopher craze at the moment so many different
Universities setting up gopher-holes that it is hard to keep track
of what is going on. At a recent meeting we decided to establish
a "mother of all Finnish gophers" at nic.funet.fi
I think it is a good idea that someone keeps a track on bio-gophers.
So I applauld the work that Don is doing.
I would like to bring up a couple of points.
1)I am the first to admit that my own gopher is heavily built up
on the resources that other people have constructed. The feeling is
that if someone has already done the job then it is easy to just
establish a link and use it. There is nothing new under the sun.
So I would like to ask how people feel about mirroring of resources.
Is it enough that everyone in Europe pounds Don's GenBank resource.
Is it enough that everyone in USA pounds Reinhard EMBL resource...
and everyone in the world jumps on Dan's PIR resource, and when
these centres run into service glitches then nobody has anywhere to
go. Do we need duplication??? What should we duplicate??? The BIG
databases or the smaller ones like ace and aat??? Who is going to
have the disk space to provide the service???
2)Lost in gopher-space... How many people have had this experiance.
You read about a resource. You track it down. You negotiate all
the menus, and finally you reach your destination. You fail to make
a bookmark, and the next time you try to navigate to the same place
you can never find it. What can we do to make moving about in
gopher-space a "memorable" experiance. Do we need a standard bio-gopher
interface (/databases, /software, /hints) that looks the same on
every machine, or do we need weird flashing neon lights and steam
whistles (Desperately Seeking Suzan) to provide hooks that jolt
our memories into remembering "hey I've been in this place before".
I have gone in the latter direction, renaming "Name=" to something
more graphic and descriptive that I have found in the original link.
Any comments by gopher maintainers or users more than welcome.
~ Rob Harper ~ E-mail: harper at convex.csc.fi
~ Finnish State Computer Centre ~ Molbio/software: harper at nic.funet.fi
~ P.O. Box 40 ~ Telephone: +358 0 457 2076
~ SF-02101 Espoo Finland ~ Fax: +358 0 457 2302