On 26 June 2013, the UCSC Genome Browser team released a suggestion box for feature requests. The suggestion box is handled by a new CGI: "hgUserSuggestion". Mirror sites can enable their own suggestion boxes by configuring hgUserSuggestion to accept requests from users.
To enable the hgUserSuggestion CGI on a Genome Browser mirror, add these six parameters to the genome browser configuration file hg.conf in your /cgi-bin/ directory:
An example set of entries drawn from ex.hg.conf (located in the src/product directory of the kent repository) follows - they should be edited as appropriate for your institution.
# The following 6 parameters are used to set up your browser to accept user suggestions. # After a user submits a suggestion, both the user and the suggestion admin address below # will receive an email containing the suggestion. # email address for the suggestion admin suggest.mailToAddrfirstname.lastname@example.org. # sender address for the suggestion email suggest.mailFromAddr=browserAdministrator@mylab.university.edu # Keyword in the mail subject line to help filter out spam suggest.filterKeyword=FORYOUREYESONLY # signature written at the bottom of suggestion emails suggest.mailSignature=My Lab browser administrator # contact address for suggestion follow up suggest.mailReturnAddr=browserAdministrator@mylab.university.edu # browser name used in emails suggest.browserName=myLab Genome Browser
The usage of these parameters is explained in the following section.
hgUserSuggestion in action
After the user (e.g., email@example.com) submits a suggestion, hgUserSuggestion will:
- Create a suggestion reference ID from the user's email address and the date/time the suggestion was submitted (e.g., "firstname.lastname@example.org 2013-07-15 09:35:50")
- Send the suggestion in an email to suggest.mailToAddr (in our example hg.conf above, that's email@example.com) containing the suggestion ID, summary, and details.
- The subject line of this email will be a combination of suggest.filterKeyword and the previously generated reference ID (e.g., "FORYOUREYESONLY firstname.lastname@example.org 2013-07-15 09:35:50"). The value of suggest.filterKeyword can be used to help filter out any spam sent to your suggestion box email address (just discard any email without that keyword in the subject).
- Display a confirmation message.
- Send a confirmation email to the user.
- The suggest.mailFromAddr, suggest.mailSignature, suggest.mailReturnAdd, and suggest.browserName fields will be used when sending the confirmation email. The hg.conf settings provided above will result in a message like the following:
From: browserAdministrator@mylab.university.edu Subject: Thank you for your suggestion to the MyLab Genome Browser To: email@example.com Someone (probably you, from IP address 123.456.78.9) submitted a suggestion to the MyLab Genome Browser regarding "Ovis aries Oar_v3.1". The suggestion has been assigned a reference number of "firstname.lastname@example.org 2013-07-15 09:35:50". If you wish to follow up on the progress of this suggestion with browser staff, you may contact us at browserAdministrator@mylab.university.edu. Please include the reference number of your suggestion in the email. Thank you for your input, My Lab browser administrator Your suggestion summary: Ovis aries Oar_v3.1 Your suggestion details: The Ovis aries 3.1 sequence is available at NCBI now. Please create a browser for this assembly.