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Recent advances in massively parallel sequencing technology have created new opportunities to probe the hidden world of microbes. Taxonomy-independent clustering of the 16S rRNA gene is usually the first step in analyzing microbial communities. Dozens of algorithms have been developed in the last decade, but a comprehensive benchmark study is lacking. Here,(More)
— The human body was not designed by engineers and the way in which it is built poses enormous control problems. Its complexity challenges the ability of classical control theory to explain human movement as well as the development of human motor skills. It is our working hypothesis that the engineering paradigm for building robots places severe limitations(More)
Anthropomimetic robotics differs from conventional approaches by capitalizing on the replication of the inner structures of the human body, such as muscles, tendons, bones, and joints. Here we present our results of more than three years of research in constructing, simulating, and, most importantly, controlling anthropomimetic robots. We manufactured four(More)
An important fraction of microbial diversity is harbored in strain individuality, so identification of conspecific bacterial strains is imperative for improved understanding of microbial community functions. Limitations in bioinformatics and sequencing technologies have to date precluded strain identification owing to difficulties in phasing short reads to(More)
DNA composition in general, and codon usage in particular, is crucial for understanding gene function and evolution. CodonExplorer, available online at http://bmf.colorado.edu/codonexplorer/, is an online tool and interactive database that contains millions of genes, allowing rapid exploration of the factors governing gene and genome compositional evolution(More)
Sponges (phylum Porifera) are early-diverging metazoa renowned for establishing complex microbial symbioses. Here we present a global Porifera microbiome survey, set out to establish the ecological and evolutionary drivers of these host-microbe interactions. We show that sponges are a reservoir of exceptional microbial diversity and major contributors to(More)
This paper discusses our work providing support for processing a large number of short tasks within the context of our development of a collaborative bioinformatics knowledge environment for structural biologists, environmental microbiologists, and evolutionary biologists. We have designed and implemented a new ensemble-based task dispatching system that we(More)
— In recent years our society has witnessed an unprecedented growth in computing power available to tackle important problems in science, engineering and medicine. For example , the SHARCNET network links large computing resources in 11 leading academic institutions in South Central Ontario, thus providing access to thousands of compute processors. It is a(More)
Online learners spend millions of hours per year testing their new skills on assignments with known answers. This paper explores whether framing research questions as assignments with unknown answers helps learners generate novel, useful, and difficult-to-find knowledge while increasing their motivation by contributing to a larger goal. Collaborating with(More)