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Shared recent poster presentation at Gateways 2020 on information architecture and accessibility of life sciences gateways and resources available through the Science Gateways Community Institute for people working in high performance computing.
Information Architecture for Science
City Tech Computational and Data Science Conference
October 23, 2020
Gateways 2020 Poster Session
October 19, 2020
Accessibility Compliance and Assessments for Gateway Websites
in Life Sciences: Toward Inclusive Design
by Shari Thurow, Noreen Whysel and Bev Corwin
Abstract: The main purpose of information architecture and site navigation is
to enhance the effectiveness of user interfaces (UIs) by supporting and
enabling task completion, accessibility, and sustainability. This is of particular
importance for science gateways given the complexity of information on portal
We examined the accessibility of 50 randomly selected gateway websites in the
Life Sciences category in the Science Gateways Community Institute (SGCI)
catalog, using both manual and automated methodologies. None of these sites
produced an accessible website as per W3C, WCAG 2.1, and Section 508
standards. The most common accessibility success in these websites was URL
structure, which enables web browsers and search engines to access content.
Accessibility Compliance and Assessments for
Gateway Websites in Life Sciences: Toward
Information architects and accessibility experts examined the accessibility of 50
randomly selected gateway websites in the Life Sciences category in the
Science Gateways Community Institute (SGCI) catalog, using both manual and
Both manual and automatic methodologies are needed to fully assess website
accessibility. For example, a website can meet W3C accessibility standards
and not be fully accessible. However, automated tools are useful for identifying
and troubleshooting accessibility issues for expert reviews.
In a scan of the first 500 pages of each site using Screaming Frog, an
accessibility auditing tool, we found that none of the gateway sites produced an
accessible website as per W3C, WCAG 2.1, and Section 508 standards.
The most common accessibility success in these websites was URL structure,
which enables web browsers and search engines to access content.
What is a Science Gateway?
● Science gateways and virtual research environments are online research
● They enable more efficient, open, reusable and reproducible research.
● Many initiatives around the globe foster and sustain these digital
● Millions of people use science gateways as the main way to access
Source: Barker, Michelle et al. (June 2019). “The global impact of science
gateways, virtual research environments and virtual laboratories.” Future
Generation Computer Systems, Elsevier.
My Gateway Journey
Information Architecture Gateway at the IA Institute, 2011
OWASP Foundation Learning Gateway, 2014
Science Gateways Community Institute
● Gateways 2016: Learning Gateway Presentation
● Gateways 2019: Information Architecture Workshop
● Gateways 2020: Poster session
NLP Gateway, Semiotics Gateway, Mentoring Gateway, etc???
IA Gateway and the SGCI
Throughout our struggle to find funding and a home for our gateway concepts,
we’ve benefited from the support of Nancy Wilkins-Diehr of the Science
Gateways Community Institute, who has provided support to our budding
gateway organization in the form of travel grants, speaking opportunities and
What is Information Architecture?
(The User Experience definition)
Information Architecture (IA) encompasses sustainable organization, search
and navigation systems within a digital environment that make information
findable and understandable. This organizing and labeling of content helps
people complete tasks effectively.
Developed according to robust interoperability and accessibility standards, IA
becomes a kind of assistive sense-making, for anyone, using any information
portal, in any context.
Information architects have been working together to develop the Information
Architecture Gateway, an online learning and collaboration gateway, utilizing
the power of one of the largest international and virtual supercomputer
networks in the world.
The gateway’s IA Toolkit will assist software developers to update their
software for better usability, interfaces, interactions, metrics, and IA
The Information Architecture Gateway will also act as a portal that helps to
connect, search, find, and use tools for IA, libraries, associations, universities,
researchers, individuals, etc. from various sectors.
What is the Information Architecture Gateway
IA Gateway Resource Library
Our IA Gateway Resource Library contains a repository of:
● Wireframe templates
● Short-code patterns (for WordPress templates)
● Persona/profile templates that include findability fields
● Reference material
● And other useful materials
We recently have engaged an information science class at DePaul University to
develop our gateway website.
The SGCI consists of five areas to support creators and users of science gateways
to help with measures for sustainability:
Science Gateways Community Institute
Incubator. Diverse expertise on demand.
Workforce Development. Student opportunities & educator
Community Engagement & Exchange. Sharing
experience & knowledge as a community.
Scientific Software Collaborative. Software & visibility for
Extended Developer Support. Longer-term, hands-on
Oklahoma University Virtual Residency
Henry Neeman, email@example.com
OU Supercomputing Center for Education and Research
Virtual Residency: annual hybrid conference alternates beginner, intermediate
and advanced topics every year
Paper Writing Apprenticeship
Grant Proposal Writing Apprenticeship
XSEDE Campus Champions
A Campus Champion helps members of their institutions to use research
computing, especially (but not exclusively) large scale and high end computing.
● 600+ Campus Champions
● 300+ Institutions
● Peer-mentoring, monthly call, conferences (SC and PEARC)
Software Carpentry https://software-carpentry.org/
Data Carpentry http://www.datacarpentry.org/
Library Carpentry https://librarycarpentry.org/
HPC Carpentry: In development
● Discuss HPC https://carpentries.topicbox.com/groups/discuss-hpc
● Thursday Coworking Hours
● Update: https://carpentries.org/blog/2019/08/hpc-carpentry-at-
CarpentryCon 2019 (video):
Noreen Whysel, MSLIS
Communication Design, CityTech
Courses: UX & UI DesignWeb Design I
Kantara FIRE - resilient identity
Me2B Alliance - dark patterns
Technology Transfer Days - DoD supported
Mucktracker - media literacy
Decision Fish - behavioral finance, financial