Workgroup annotation
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Workgroup annotation

This is the developing Proxiris project, focused on workgroup annotation in a team consisting of software and human agents.

It is built on Sensebase, a general system for document storage and annotation based on Node.js and ElasticSearch.

This version is a developing version focused on closed workgroups, so security is all-or-nothing once logged in.

The overall system focuses on a component oriented design, much of the code developed in the project is located in npm modules. Use the following instructions to install Proxiris. In time this repository will include TsangLab elements and a simpler installation, but please file an issue if you have difficulty today.


Presuming a Debian derived distro:

sudo apt-get install build-essential openjdk-7-jre-headless

Install elasticsearch .deb from

sudo service elasticsearch start

Install Node.js (via NVM)

curl | sh

source ./nvm/

nvm install 0.10

npm install sensebase

cd SenseBase

npm install

… time passes …

Install dev deps:

npm install winston

npm install -g bower

npm install -g grunt-cli

Install third party client JavaScript libs:

bower install

Create a config.js file:

// logging
var winston = require('winston');

GLOBAL.debug = winston.debug; =;
GLOBAL.warn = winston.warn;
GLOBAL.error = winston.error;

var domain = 'my.great.domain';
var esOptions ={ _index : 'proxiris', server : { host : 'es.' + domain, port : 9200 }};

exports.config = {
  project: 'proxiris',
  DOMAIN: domain,
  FAYEHOST: 'http://faye.' + domain + ':9999/montr',
  ESEARCH:  esOptions,
  ESEARCH_URI: 'http://es.' + domain + ':' + esOptions.server.port + '/' + esOptions._index,
  HOMEPAGE: 'http://dashboard.' + domain,
  AUTH_PORT: 9999,
  PROXY_PORT: 8089,
  SPOTLIGHT: { host: 'spotlight' + domain, port: 7272},
  SENTIMENT: { host: 'sentiment' + domain, port: 9002},
  NOCACHE_REGEX: '.*.' + domain,
  CACHE_DIR : '/some/dir',
  uploadDirectory: './uploads',
  doCache : true,
  doAuth: true,
  logStream : { write: function() {}}

Create the defined uploadDirectory for serving those files.

Run node utils/reset to create the ElasticSearch mappings.

Start the HTTP service:

node app.js


Annotators connect to the general system via a publication-subscribe system. They may be standalone, or they may have a wrapping service to connect them to a long running process. The GATE and Sentiment pipeline works this way.

To manually start annotation, for example the Sentiment service:

cd annotateServices

node sentimentService

Start service pubsub agents, for Sentiment:

cd lib/annotateServices

node sentiment

GATE pipeline

The GATE pipeline takes GATE tagged documents and transform them into instance annotations.

To configure the GATE pipeline:



Note absolute paths are used to avoid much sorrow and pain when compiling and executing.

Edit as appropriate. The sample is for


cd java

ant to compile, or ant run-pipeline to test.

then execute:

node nodejs/annotateServices/annotateGATEService.js

to start the GATE service on port 9009. This program runs a number of sanity checks to help debug.

then execute (in another terminal):

node nodejs/services/annotators/gateAnnotator.js <path to SenseBase>

to start the pubsub agent.

To use Proxiris as a proxy

Configure your browser to access the web via my.great.domain, port 8089. Add your dashboard to proxy exceptions.

To access Proxiris' dashboard

Go to http://my.great.domain and see documents appear as they are accessed via proxy or dragged and dropped into the list.