Give Your Gift

24 Nov
Published by gtaylor

Subject 

Rants

Community 

general open research

In the U.S. we just celebrated Thanksgiving. It's a day we spend with family, eat too much (what's new?), and reflect on all the things we're thankful for. I have a lot to be thankful for. I have a wonderful family, we're generally healthy, and I've been relatively successful in my career in software.

A little more than a year ago, while feeling fortunate and thankful, I was reflecting on what I could do to give back to the world. I thought about it for quite a while, asking myself, with my experience with corporate portals (I was the R&D leader at PeopleSoft for their portal application), how could I best leverage my skills to give something back to the world. Founding The Synaptic Leap was and still is my answer.

It has become a calling for me. I believe passionately that this should be done; I know emphatically that it is technically possible. The question is simply a cultural one. Are biomedical scientists willing to do it? I think so. I believe in the human race. I believe that most of us will give a bit if we think it will make a difference. I hope, that providing The Synaptic Leap, we're giving you a place to connect with other scientists, a place to check your egos at the door and give your ideas freely, and a place to encourage and nurture the ideas of others. I hope we're giving you the perfect place to leverage your talents to give back to the world.

Sample ideas: 

  • Volunteer. Help with an existing project.
  • Take a project you're writing a grant for and make some of it open source. Granting agencies are increasingly favoring this.
  • If you teach a class, have the a class assignment centered around one of the projects on the site, having the students contribute online.
  • Write a post telling us what tools are needed. Tell us why you think this will or won't work.

Get active!