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[protege-discussion] A special request: Letter of support for Protege renewal grant

Jennifer Vendetti vendetti at
Thu Dec 16 09:29:29 PST 2010

Hello Jim,

It would be very helpful if letters are submitted to us by January 30th.

Best Regards,

On 12/13/2010 5:54 AM, James Geller wrote:
> Dear Mark,
> We are working on a letter for you.
> I am just worrying that it's already two
> weeks since your message.
> And with final exams now...
> Is there a "due date" for the letters?
>   Thanks
>        Jim
> On Tue, Nov 30, 2010 at 10:58 PM, Mark Musen <musen at 
> <mailto:musen at>> wrote:
>     Dear Colleagues,
>     I apologize for the cross-postings, but this message is very
>     important.  This message is about the future of the Protégé system.
>     As most of you know, Stanford is able to make Protégé available as
>     a freely downloadable, supported, open-source platform only
>     because we receive a generous grant from the United States
>     National Institutes of Health (NIH).  The NIH funding supports bug
>     fixes and feature enhancements requested by the community. Each
>     new release of the Protégé system is a direct result of our NIH
>     funding.
>     We have received ongoing funding for the Protégé resource since
>     2003, and it is now time to prepare our next grant application so
>     that we can continue to evolve the software (the rich client,
>     WebProtégé, and a wide range of plug-ins), to answer questions
>     posted to our mailing lists, and to offer our recurring Protégé
>     conferences.  For those of you who have benefitted from the
>     availability of Protégé over the years, we would be extremely
>     grateful if you could join with us to help us secure the next
>     round of funding so that you can continue to receive these benefits.
>     *I am asking for something very simple:  A letter of support that
>     we can include in our grant application.*
>     When our request for grant funding will be reviewed by the NIH,
>     the testimonials that we receive from our user community will have
>     a major role in determining whether we will receive future funding
>     and, if so, whether we will be funded at the level that we request
>     in our proposal.  Letters from people who rely on Protégé
>     technology will go a long way in ensuring uninterrupted user
>     support and many exciting new features in the years ahead.  Your
>     letter will make an enormous difference to ensure that Protégé
>     doesn't go away.
>     It would be best if you could send me a signed letter on
>     letterhead (either a hardcopy or, preferably, a PDF) that I can
>     include in the grant application.  Sending me plain e-mail is
>     fine, but a letter on formal letterhead with a real signature will
>     have maximum impact on the reviewers.
>     Every letter should provide a brief description of the project or
>     projects for which you are using Protégé or have used Protégé. *If
>     a project is the result of federally sponsored research, please
>     include a reference to the agency that is funding the work and the
>     corresponding grant or contract number.*  Grant numbers are
>     particularly important to the National Institutes of Health.
>     Although there is no required format for your letter—and indeed it
>     should not appear that your letter is following a specific
>     template—it would be wonderful if you could comment on the
>     following kinds of things:
>     * How are you using Protégé?  Please describe the project or
>     projects with which you are using the system.
>     * How have you benefitted from the Protégé resource?  Have you or
>     your team used our mailing lists?  Have you communicated with
>     the Protégé development group directly?  Have you attended any of
>     our conferences?
>     * If the availability of an open-source product such as Protégé is
>     important to you, you might comment on why this is the case.
>     * There are now several commercial tools on the market that allow
>     users to create and edit ontologies and knowledge bases.  If you
>     believe that Protégé, its plug-ins, or the Protégé user community
>     offer advantages that are important to you that are not associated
>     with these commercial products, you might want to comment on why
>     you are using Protégé.  Do you see a tangible advantage to the
>     development and enhancement of a tool such as Protégé by a
>     research group such as ours?  Simply put, the government will want
>     to know why it should continue to invest in the Protégé system and
>     in its ongoing evolution.
>     * In sum, how has the availability of the Protégé resource made a
>     difference to you and your work?
>     Formal letters are best, but, if it is impractical to write a
>     letter, a brief e-mail message will be greatly appreciated. 
>     Fundamentally, the continued existence of the Protégé resource
>     depends on our ability to demonstrate the importance of our work
>     to the community of users whom we support.  Without your
>     enthusiastic letters, NIH will not see evidence for continuing to
>     fund us.
>     I know that this request imposes on your time.  The entire Protégé
>     team will be grateful for any statement of support that we can
>     include in our grant application.  One of the most exciting
>     aspects of the Protégé project has been the ability to serve and
>     support a user community that believes in our work and in what we
>     are trying to do.  All of us who work on the Protégé system are
>     grateful to all of you who have contributed your support, your
>     suggestions, and your code to the Protégé project.
>     Please send your letters to me at the address below.  If you know
>     of others who might be able to help us out, then please forward
>     this message directly to them.
>     Many thanks for your support and for your contributions to our
>     user community,
>     Mark Musen
>     Principal Investigator, the Protégé project
>     -----------------------------------------------
>     Mark A. Musen, M.D., Ph.D.
>     Professor of Medicine (Biomedical Informatics Research) and of
>     Computer Science
>     Director, Stanford Center for Biomedical Informatics Research
>     Stanford University
>     251 Campus Drive, X-215
>     Stanford, CA  94305  USA
>     Phone: +1 (650) 725-3390
>     Fax: +1 (650) 725-7944
>     musen at Stanford.EDU <mailto:musen at Stanford.EDU>
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