What is GINKGO?

GINKGO is a computer program that tries to make multivariate analysis methods easier to run for non-experts in statistics. It has been developed in the context of numerical ecology, but it can be used in other scientific disciplines (e.g. bioinformatics, sociology, psychology, econometrics,...). While it runs independently, it is the statistical module of VEGANA package, a working environment that provides several tools for editing and analysing flora and vegetation.

GINKGO has an easy-to-use graphical interface containing three main windows: a Data Editor, an Analysis Manager, and a Graphic Editor. The whole interface provides an intuitive integrated framework that allows users to explore, step by step, their multivariate data. Resemblance between objects or variables is established by choosing between different similarity and dissimilarity coefficients. After that, data structure can be studied using multivariate representation and classification methods, whose results are stored in the Analysis Manager. Finally, it is possible to re-copy result matrices back onto the data editor for subsequent analyses. This sort of multivariate data mining can be done in several sessions because complete working projects are saved in compressed (.zip) files.


List of multivariate analysis methods available in GINKGO:

Multivariate representation methods:

    • PCA
    • PCoA (metric MDS)
    • CA - Correspondence analysis
    • NMDS - Non-metric scaling
    • RMDS - Related multidimensional scaling
    • Canonical methods: CCA and RDA

Classification methods:

    • K-means, Fuzzy K-means based on rectangular o symmetric matrices.
    • Possibilistic C-means
    • Aglomerative hierarchical clustering
    • Discriminant analysis (linear, quadratic or distance-based)
    • Classification evaluation and classification comparison indices.


Installation and execution

The program is written in Java programming language so it can be run under different operating systems (Windows, Linux, Mac, etc.). In fact, any platform supporting Java Runtime Environment version 1.5.0 or higher (http://www.java.com/) is suited to run the program. Once the program is installed, subsequent updates are automatically done via Java Web Start (JWS) technology. Each time the user starts to run the program, if the computer is online, JWS checks whether there is a newer version and downloads it if there is.

Brief instructions on how to install and update the program would be as follows:

  1. Check that your computer has the Java Runtime Environment (JRE) in a suitable version (1.5.x) installed. If so, then click on the GINKGO above icon. This will launch Java Web Start (JWS), download the program and run it.
  2. If you do not have JRE 1.5.x installed, go first to the detailed installation instructions .
  3. Our software is digitally signed. Please, download our certificate to identify it.
  4. GINKGO is freely available. Read our license agreement.

Graphics using Monarch Charts. Copyright by Singleton Labs ©

Last update: 27.02.2006