Web services for environmental applications
A two-day workshop

25th-26th January 2005

General information

Web services have played a significant role in the UK escience programme for many different applications. One exemplar in the use of web services in environmental escience is the GODIVA project. In this case there has been a lot of work to couple access to data, data assimilation and visualisation via a web services interface to the user.

The idea of this workshop is to showcase some of the various applications of web services, to show how web services applications can be developed, and to have a hands-on practical session to enable participants to build some web services applications from simple building blocks

The workshop organiser is Jon Blower from the Reading eScience Centre.

Aims of the course

The two-day workshop aims to present a look at how web services can be used to develop environmental escience applications. The first day will start by looking at a number of examples taken from current environmental escience projects. This this will be followed by some talks on the basics of web services, which will be illustrated by a detailed description of how one of the applications has been implemented. We hope that the morning of the second day will be spent as a practical session in which participants will build a simple web services application. The last afternoon will be spend in general discussion and in bringing together any loose ends.

Target audience

This course is aimed at novices and relative newcomers to web services. However, experienced users may find some of the applications of interest as well. Some familiarity with the Unix/Linux Operating System and a basic knowledge of programming will be useful, but people with limited experience will be accommodated.


25th January


Registration and coffee/tea


Introduction to escience (Martin Dove) [ppt, 17 MB]


Introduction to web services (Jon Blower, Reading, & Clovis Chapman, University College London) [ppt1, 0.6 MB; ppt2, 0.1 MB]




Web services, workflow and Taverna (Tom Oinn, European Bioinformatics Institute) [ppt, 5 MB]


Workflow and XML components for computational chemistry (Peter Murray-Rust, Cambridge) [web, requires installed SVG viewer]


Web services for visualisation in the GODIVA project (Ronald Fowler & Srikanth Nagella, CCLRC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory) [ppt, 0.9 MB]


Web services and data transfer (Jon Blower, Reading) [ppt, 0.6 MB]




BPEL, Workflow and service wrapping (Ben Butchard, University College London) [ppt, 0.9 MB]


GADS (Jon Blower, Reading) [ppt, 0.5 MB]


ESA applications of web services with demo (Pedro Goncalves, ESA) [ppt, 25 MB]


Introduction to Day 2 (Jon Blower, Reading, & Martin Dove, NIEeS)




Drinks reception


Workshop dinner

26th January


Practical session (Jon Blower, Reading, & Martin Keegan, NIEeS); details are given below


Coffee (including walk back to Emmanuel College)


Using web services technologies to build internet-scale applications (Savas Parastatidis, Newcastle) [ppt]




Condor and Web Services (Clovis Chapman and Charaka Goonatilake, University College London) [ppt]


Web services and GIS, with something on standards and what NDG intend to do with Web services (Andrew Woolf, CCLRC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory)


Digital Curation for Service-based Workflows (Rajendra Bose, Edinburgh)


Coffee/tea and close

Practical session

The practical session is made available for people to run on their home computers. It is designed to be run on a PC running Microsoft Windows, although some set up is required. The relevant pages are

  1. Setup instructions
  2. Tutorial
  3. Files required for Part 3 of the tutorial (pending)
  4. Solutions (zip file for downloading)

The tutorial has been prepared by Jon Blower from the Reading eScience Centre.


The main meetings of the workshop, lunches, and conference dinner will be held in Emmanuel College. The practical session will be held in Titan Teaching Room 1 on the New Museums site; information and maps can be obtained from here.

Details of the location of the meeting, including travel plans, can be obtained here.

Because the event is being held in term time, accommodation will need to be privately arranged, but reasonable costs can be reimbursed. A conference dinner will be held in Emmanuel College on the evening of 25th January, to which all delegates are invited. Hotel booking information is available from Visit Cambridge or on 01223 457581.


It is anticipated that the workshop may generate interest in some follow-on activities. We will discuss the sort of follow-on activities that can be arranged, such as visits to NIEeS to demonstrate some of the escience/grid technologies and to provide help with installation and usage.



Contact and further information

For information about registration, and all other types of queries, please contact the NIEeS office in the first instance.

Last update:Mon, Jan 31, 2005