Infrastructure Tool Development

Report on the CLARA Summer School on Infrastructure Tool Development, held from July 5th to 12th 2011 at Nijmegen, The Netherlands

This summer school aimed to reach an audience of young researchers with an interest in building intelligent components that can add value to a research infrastructure and with a certain level of technical knowledge.


The goals to be achieved with this summer school were to present the following topics:

  • The state of art in computational linguistics, audio, video and text processing for automated content analysis and automated annotation creation,
  • Popular annotation tools (in particular ELAN) and demonstrate their extensibility capacities,
  • Developing intelligent components for research purposes using the available software frameworks and interfaces of communication (like ELAN and its plugin interface);

Thus with this summer school we wanted to address training needs of young researchers and technologists who want to know how to develop and integrate smart components to be used by others. We intended to show how programmed modules can be made such that they can be easily integrated. We do this since we envisage that this capability will be so important in the future eScience scenario.


The training consisted of theoretical and practical parts. Every topic was introduced with presentations given by proper experts; discussions in which all the questions could be raised and all the doubts clarified; and a practical work part, in which participants had the opportunity to develop their own algorithms operating on linguistic data and solving specific, exemplary tasks. For this purpose we selected a few simple to solve, but nevertheless interesting cases.

The presentations and activities were performed under supervision of the Max Planck Institute team and invited experts, including Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and Leipzig University. The MPI team has a long time experience in giving training from the area of linguistic tools. The MPI is also the home for the ELAN annotation tool and the AVATecH project, which aims at developing algorithms for automated annotation creation. The Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and Leipzig University provide solutions from the area of sound, video and text processing for linguistic purposes.

Application and contact

Participation in this training school was free, only lodging and alimentation needed to be covered by the participants. The participants were expected to have some knowledge about programming in one of the popular languages (C++, Java).

We were only be able to provide a limited number of places for this event. Applicants from CLARA and CLARIN were prioritized.

The contact person for the school was Przemek Lenkiewicz.

Read more details in the Report on the CLARA Summer School on Infrastructure Tool Development

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