Over the last two years, MS-Spectre has been developed by two independant groups as part of a software project course offered by the Department of Information and Computing Sciences of the University of Utrecht. The assigment offered by the Netherlands Proteomics Centre was clear: Develop a modular software package capable of visualising and analysing mass spectrometric data.
The first group, consisting of 8 members, worked on the project from february until july 2006 when they delivered their final version of MS-Spectre. This team kicked off with the project and laid the fundaments of the program. They made the modular framework, implemented a (reasonably slow) parser for mzXML, created a visualisation (which also wasn't very fast) and created a primitive peakdetection algorithm. At the end of this teams' development period the program, while being a good start, wasn't ready to be used for real analytical purposes because it suffered from quite a few bugs and was very slow. For example, it wasn't unusual to have to wait a few hours for the visualisation of a large MS sample. The peak detection algorithm also wasn't very useful, because it missed a truckload of peaks and there was no way of comparing them with other samples or exporting the ratios that had been found.
Because the program wasn't ready to use yet, the Netherlands Proteomics Centre decided they wanted to continue the project and a second group consisting of 9 members was formed to continue development of MS-Spectre. At the time writing this the most desired features are already available or there is heavy development on them. The parsing has been made considerably faster and MS-Spectre now supports the parsing of mzData, visualisation speed has been boosted, a good peak detection algorithm has been deployed and the peak matching and exporting ratios features are being worked on as we speak.
Currently the following people have contributed to the project:
Albert-Jan Yzelman, Joris Borgdorff, Marilou Dubbeld, Marnix Kammer, Michel Claassen, Roeland Luitwieler, Steven Bitter & Taco Witte
Arnoud Pastink, Bas den Heijer, Diederik Roijers, Jelmer Vernooij, Pieter Huibers, Pieter van Ede, Simeon Visser, Thomas Bronzwaer, Vincent Bessels