Here at the Genome Browser we’re constantly looking for ways to improve the Browser and make it more accessible. A big part of that is making it as easy as possible for people to learn how to use our tools to best serve their research. In the past this has included setup and maintenance of documentation, including our help docs as well as a dedicated wiki site, where browser staffers and external users alike have shared content. We also continue to offer real-time support on our mailing list (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Thanks to funding support from the NHGRI we were recently able to amp up our training efforts in two ways. We now have a program whereby interested groups can economically host a Genome Browser workshop at their institution. For more information, fill out our intake survey: bit.ly/ucscTraining.
The other thing we have been able to do is launch a YouTube channel where you will find video tutorials explaining how to use various parts of the Browser. While static documents and email support are great, we realize some people learn better by seeing how something is done. We also hope this will be a good resource for those unable to physically attend one of our trainings. The video topics are meant to address some of the common workflows and questions we get from users. Each video is an illustration of how to answer a particular query, for example: “How do I identify exon numbers with the UCSC Genome Browser?“
The answer will follow a sequence of steps traversing different parts of the Browser. For those who want to jump straight to one of the steps/skills listed in the video, you will find a set of internal links to the timepoints within the video in the YouTube video description. There, you will also find a transcript of the video if you want to follow along or take notes:
You can find links to these resources on our training page. If you have a question that you’d like to see demoed in a video, we are always open to suggestions! You can reach the training department by email or tweet us an idea @GenomeBrowser.
If after reading this blog post you have any public questions, please email email@example.com. All messages sent to that address are archived on a publicly accessible forum. If your question includes sensitive data, you may send it instead to firstname.lastname@example.org.