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NWB:N version 2.0 coming soon

Post Series: nwb-n

Neurodata Withtout Borders – Neurophysiology (NWB:N) aims to provide the neuroscience community a critically needed resource for standardization of neurophysiology data sets. The original NWB:N project defined the philosophy and basic functionality required of this standard, and provided an initial software implementation (https://github.com/NeurodataWithoutBorders). Building on these foundations, a continuation of NWB:N, funded by the Kavli Foundation, aims to create software to make the NWB format easier to use and to broaden its adoption.

A central component has been the development of a new software infrastructure for the NWB:N format. The principal goal is to create a sustainable, well-documented, modern, easy-to-use software architecture and APIs for the NWB:N data format. This includes: high-level read/write APIs to ease analysis, use and integration of NWB with analysis software and HPC applications, updates to the NWB specification language make extensions more accessible and extension of existing data models to allow rich expression of relationships between data with enhanced machine readability.

Over the past couple of days, several members of the NWB:N community have convened an extremely productive hackathon at the HHMI Janelia Research Campus to review these changes and identify key needed features. Our goal is to provide a ‘public release’ of NWB2.0 in the weeks before SfN 2017.

NWB 2.0 will:

1) retain all functionality of the original implementation

2) improve stability and maintainability of software

3) lower the barrier to entry

4) make NWB easier to use

As such, after discussion and testing by the NWB group, we will recommend that NWB2.0 become the single, unified software framework for the NWB:N data format.

To enhance community engagement and communication, we have set-up the following platforms:

-An official Gitub Repository to house all software, documentation, and examples/tutorials.

-A Slack Channel for users interested in direct engagement with the developers.

-A Google group for a web-searchable general discussion platform.

Please contact [email protected] if you or any of your group members would like to join any of these groups.  We welcome your feedback and continued contributions to this exciting project.

On behalf of the NWB:N Community,

Kristofer Bouchard (LBNL)

Lydia Ng (AIBS)

Karel Svaboda (HHMI Janelia)

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