Welcome to the VIDaaS website

What's the latest news?

The VIDaaS Project has now officially concluded. You can read the final report here:

The 'Database as a Service' (DaaS) software that the VIDaaS Project created will be available to researchers at the University of Oxford as part of the forthcoming 'Online Research Database Servcie' (ORDS), which we hope to launch to early adopters by February 2013. ORDS will allow research projects with staff at Oxford to swiftly create relational databases that can be edited, searched, and shared online. It will also allow existing databases to be imported, so that they may be shared or further developed. The ORDS will make use of the University's private cloud and automated back-up system to ensure secure and reliable performance. In the future we will enable users to host their data across selected public cloud networks (to reduce costs) and add support for XML databases along with improved functionality for dealing with images, audio, and multimedia. Questions about the forthcoming ORDS should be addressed to ords@it.ox.ac.uk

At the moment (August 2012), we are migrating the DaaS software to a more secure application platform.

What is VIDaaS?

VIDaaS (Virtual Infrastructure with Database as a Service) is a project of two halves. The 'DaaS' part will develop software that enables researchers to build, edit, search, and share databases online; the 'VI' part involves the development of an infrastructure enabling the DaaS to function within a cloud computing environment.

In computing terms, a 'cloud' is a network of computing resources that provides both space to store data and the computational power to do things with it, all done remotely from the user's own machine. Cloud technology has the potential to save organisations a considerable amount of money, partly through the economies of scale that come from providing resources centrally, and partly through flexibility, as the organisation does not need to invest in more computing storage or power than it actually needs at any given time.

VIDaaS is funded under the JISC's UMF Shared Services and the Cloud programme. It follows on from the Sudamih Project. VIDaaS is based at the University of Oxford and will be working with researchers from the University in the first instance. It began in April 2011 and runs until March 2012.

We have now started testing the Database as a Service software. If you would like to get involved with the testing process and see for yourself how the system works, please email us at vidaas@oucs.ox.ac.uk.

Why should I be interested in VIDaaS?

If you are a researcher...

The DaaS will enable you to add, edit, search, and share the data you gather during your research. It is an online service accessed via a web interface, so you can work on your data from any computer with an Internet connection. Collaborating with other researchers will also be easier, as multiple editors can work on a single database. Acess controls will enable you to decide exactly who gets permission to do what. You can import existing databases in common formats (such as Access) in order to breathe new life into old projects or work on them further. If you want to share your research data with your colleagues, or even the general public, you can open the data up with a flick of a switch - a simple generic search interface enables others to search the database. Because the DaaS will be provided as a central service, your data can be securely backed up, and restored in the event of disasters.

In the future you will be able to include images and multimedia in your databases, as well as publishing subsections of your databases to accompany research papers. We shall be adding a roadmap of future functionality developments to this website in due course

If you provide research services...

You may wish to consider how your own researchers can benefit from using the DaaS and how it might be adopted at your institution. During the VIDaaS Project we will be looking at the costs and benefits of the DaaS and calculating the savings that might be gained by using it as a centrally-provided service. Besides the anticipated reduction in costs, adopting the DaaS will enable universities to keep better track of their data assets and potentially simplify technical support.

If you fund research...

The DaaS will provide a relatively cheap system that encourages researchers to make their data comprehensible, helps to render it interoperable, and assists longer-term preservation and re-use, thereby improving the whole research data curation life-cycle and helping to maximise the value of the data your resources have paid for. The simple interface and secure service can ensure that data which should be public can be exposed with almost no additional effort by its creators, whilst data that needs to be private can safely remain so.

If you are a software developer...

You may wish to get involved with the Project. The DaaS is being built as a number of separate components with a bit of 'glue' code to join them together into a single system. The DaaS is an open-source software project and if you wish to adapt or improve the system or one of its components to meet your own needs, you can do so.

The sourcecode for the VIDaaS software, along with the issues log and other information about the technical development of the VIDaaS project, can be found in the VIDaaS Google Code Repository.

VIDaaS Feeds

VIDaaS News:

A Farewell to VIDaaS, or, What VIDaaS Did Next[2012-05-15T15:27:31Z][2012-04-03T15:50:39Z]
VIDaaS Project survey: creating research databases[2012-02-22T16:33:57Z][2012-02-22T16:33:57Z]
VIDaaS/DataFlow workshop on the 2nd March[2012-02-14T11:55:42Z][2012-02-14T11:55:42Z]
VIDaaS Project Update, 24th January 2012[2012-01-24T16:52:13Z][2012-01-24T16:52:13Z]

VIDaaS Web Bookmarks:

ZendTo - Web-Based File Transfer[Wed, 28 Sep 2011 09:18:29 -0000]
FigShare[Wed, 28 Sep 2011 09:16:54 -0000]
BuzzData[Wed, 28 Sep 2011 09:15:01 -0000]
UK Data Archive - TRAINING RESOURCES[Wed, 28 Sep 2011 09:12:58 -0000]
APA 2011 Conference 8-9 Nov, London « APA[Wed, 28 Sep 2011 09:12:37 -0000]