We recently posted a preview of the Microsoft Biology Foundation (MBF) for development evaluation purposes. Now, we’re following up with a special, free, one-day MBF workshop on March 11, 2011, in Redmond, Washington, hosted by the Microsoft Biology Initiative. The workshop includes a quick introduction to Microsoft Visual Studio 2010, the Microsoft .NET Framework, C#, and the MBF Object Model. Plus, our hands-on lab will give you the opportunity to write a sample application that employs the file parsers, algorithms, and web connectors in MBF.
We will also cover some MBF training modules throughout the day, including:
- Module 1: Introduction to Visual Studio 2010 and C#. This comprehensive introduction to the Microsoft Visual Studio programming environment and Microsoft .NET will teach you how to create a project, how to get started with C#, and how to perform runtime debugging. Also, you will get hands-on lab experience by building applications in Visual Studio 2010.
- Module 2: Introduction to the Microsoft Biology Foundation. This overview will introduce you to the MBF basics through discussions of its scenarios and architectures and includes a starter project. The starter project is a hands-on lab that will help you get the experience you need to work with sequences, parsers, formatters, and the transcription algorithm that is supplied in MBF.
- Module 3: Working with Sequences. In this module, you’ll learn more about the Sequence data type in MBF, including how to load sequences into memory and save them, the different sequence types available, how to use sequence metadata, and how data virtualization support enables support for large data sets in a hands-on lab setting.
- Module 4: Parsers and Formatters. In Parsers and Formatters, you’ll explore MBF’s built-in sequence parsers, formatters, alphabets, and encoders. This module will also introduce the method of expanding MBF with custom alphabets, parsers, and formatters. The hands-on lab will walk you through the steps that are required to build a simple custom parser and formatter for a fabricated biology data format.
- Module 5: Algorithms. In this module, you will examine the algorithms that are defined in MBF for sequence alignment, multi-sequence alignment, sequence fragment assembly, transcription, translation, and pattern matching against sequences; you’ll also learn how to create custom algorithms. The hands-on lab will walk you through the steps that are required to build an application to run algorithms against sequences loaded with MBF and will teach you how to perform sequence alignment, assembly, and transformations.
- Module 6: Web Services. This module will introduce Microsoft .NET web services, the web service architecture in MBF, the built-in web service support in MBF for BLAST (Basic Local Alignment Search Tool), and ClustalW. You will also learn how to call these services asynchronously and will watch a detailed example of how to build custom service wrappers. In the hands-on lab, you’ll build an application that executes the BLAST algorithm by using web services against handlers for BLAST, pass sequences and sequence fragments to BLAST, change the BLAST parameters, and display the results from a BLAST run.
We hope you will join us for this free one-day event. Whether your goal is to get trained on MBF or simply to evaluate MBF and its Microsoft .NET model, you can expect to get a tremendous return on your time investment.
For complete details about the day, or to register, please see the MBF Workshop website. We look forward to meeting you on March 11 in Redmond.
—Beatriz Diaz Acosta, Senior Research Program Manager, Health and Wellbeing, Microsoft Research Connections