TIBCO Academic Alliance Soars to New Heights Alongside Washington University, University of Colorado Denver, and Texas Tech
Blog: The Tibco Blog
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The TIBCO Academic Alliance collaborates with universities and higher education centers around the globe to get TIBCO’s innovative solutions into classrooms and research programs. TIBCO seeks to offer this cutting-edge technology to universities and non-profits to increase student’s marketability in the workforce and to help researchers get the data-driven insights they need.
TIBCO sat down with Washington University in St. Louis, the University of Colorado Denver, and Texas Tech University to see how TIBCO Spotfire® is revolutionizing their academic fields.
Washington University Researches Disease DNA
Washington University is committed to learning and exploration, discovery, and impact—and seeks to drive positive change through its research of neurodegenerative diseases. Using an individual’s DNA, the university can create a library of patient-specific mutations—and through CRISPR genome editing—engineers these mutations into live human cells. TIBCO Spotfire analytics is used for quality control of cell imaging, feature extraction, and machine learning to find a model that predicts which cells are perturbed by the mutations. Those cells are captured, sequenced, and the exact genetic mutation is determined to provide data for eventual patient-specific gene therapy.
William Buchser Ph.D., Assistant Professor at the Department of Genetics, has used Spotfire since graduate school and says it’s integral to the work the team does: “It would be really hard to replace Spotfire because it’s an important part of what we do.” The university started with a trial version of Spotfire and found that the product was perfect for its needs. For Dr. Buchser, this product trial turned into an academic alliance partnership.
The university’s cutting-edge research of functional genomics wouldn’t be possible without the robust capabilities of Spotfire. Buchser notes there are “millions and millions of mutations” so the data that goes into Spotfire is complex and often too overwhelming for other tools.
Buchser is not the only researcher at the university who is amazed by Spotfire. He describes a new post doctorate’s experience working on the team: “The researcher was doing some imaging and analysis and asked if there was an easier way to do it. We sat him down, pulled the data into Spotfire, and clicked 3 things. His mouth fell open. He had been trying to do this for a week, and we just did this in seconds. To see how quickly this kind of analysis could happen was amazing. He was floored—and that happens all the time. We bring people in to help them with their data. You can get an answer quickly with Spotfire.”
CU Denver Students Work to Remedy Arthritis
The University of Colorado at Denver, also known as CU Denver, uses Spotfire in its engineering capstone class. Over the course of the capstone, one group of students created a prototype that allows patients to exercise their hands without the direct supervision of a physical therapist. The device uses sensors to help the patient stretch correctly—all while connecting to a fun, gaming interface.
Data from sensors is then captured by TIBCO Spotfire for analysis. The students use the analytics platform to understand and visualize historical data surrounding important trends. The data tells students where there might be errors in the prototype, what the accuracy of the patient data is, and where patients might be having the most trouble with finger mobility.
Dr. Kristin Wood at CU Denver says, “This partnership demonstrates how the expertise of industry and the passion of students can come together to create bold and innovative ideas. We are excited to work with TIBCO and look forward to deepening our partnership, ultimately leading to a positive impact in people’s lives.”
Texas Tech Students Visualize Well Data
Sheldon Gorell, Associate Professor at Texas Tech, uses TIBCO Spotfire in his petroleum engineering classes. Before becoming a professor, Gorell had used Spotfire for 15 years while working at an oil and gas company and was an avid user. While demonstrating reservoir simulations in class, Gorell noted that the students wanted to know how he was creating complex plots through Excel. His response: It was TIBCO Spotfire!
Once Gorell started using Spotfire in the classroom for demonstrations, students said they wanted to learn how to use it—and it grew from there. Students began asking why they didn’t have access to this tool in the classroom. TIBCO made it possible for Gorell to introduce Spotfire to his students seamlessly. Gorell says, once he introduced Spotfire to students “they were off and running.”
Gorell enjoys using Spotfire in the classroom and research because it allows students to learn about correlations, develop critical thinking, and create their own visualizations. Students discover how to interpret data by using Spotfire to visualize oil well data. This multifaceted drilling and production data often is over hundreds of columns and rows, much too complex for traditional Excel spreadsheets, which most students were using. Feedback from alumni has been positive as students report their internships and jobs require them to use industry-agnostic tools like Spotfire.
In the future, Gorell would like to see Spotfire benefit all of Texas Tech, especially in the College of Engineering, as he recognizes the need for students to learn industry-wide skills. Students who use Spotfire in the classroom have reported it helped them grow in their careers beyond the university. According to Gorell, “The world is ready for everyone to know Spotfire. Every engineering discipline has to analyze results, not just petroleum engineers.”
The TIBCO Academic Alliance collaborates with universities and higher education centers around the globe to get TIBCO’s innovative solutions into classrooms and research programs.
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TIBCO’s Academic Alliance program provides educators and students with free or low-cost cutting-edge technology to spark learning and innovation in classrooms around the world and to prepare the workforce of tomorrow.
If you think your institution or non-profit would be a good fit for the program, reach out here.