How to import Songbird Differentials Into QIIME2


I ran Songbird stand alone (add-on was not compatible with QIIME2/2020.8) and produced differntial directories of the various models that I created, and evaluated them in TensorBoard.

Now that I would like to visualize and explore these differentials with Qurro (this add-on works in QIIME2/2020.8) I am stuck trying to import the differentials from Songbird (stand alone) into QIIME2 format.

I tried the following command:
qiime tools import
–input-path Model_Directory/
–output-path Differential.qza
–type DifferentialDirectoryFormat

…and got this error:
Traceback (most recent call last):
File “/gpfs0/export/apps/opt/QIIME2/2020.8/lib/python3.6/site-packages/q2cli/builtin/”, line 158, in import_data
File “/gpfs0/export/apps/opt/QIIME2/2020.8/lib/python3.6/site-packages/qiime2/sdk/”, line 241, in import_data
File “/gpfs0/export/apps/opt/QIIME2/2020.8/lib/python3.6/site-packages/qiime2/sdk/”, line 255, in _from_view
output_dir_fmt = pm.get_directory_format(type)
File “/gpfs0/export/apps/opt/QIIME2/2020.8/lib/python3.6/site-packages/qiime2/sdk/”, line 313, in get_directory_format
% semantic_type)
TypeError: Semantic type DifferentialDirectoryFormat does not have a compatible directory format.

An unexpected error has occurred:

Semantic type DifferentialDirectoryFormat does not have a compatible directory format.

See above for debug info.

SO! Now I’m not sure how to get my Songbird differentials into QIIME2 for use with Qurro. I also tried the “–type DifferentialFormat” on just the “differentials.txt” output, but got a very similar error.

Thanks so much if anyone can help with this!!!

Hi everyone - I figured it out with the following command:

qiime tools import
–input-path Model_Directory/differentials.tsv
–output-path Differential.qza
–type FeatureData[Differential]
–input-format DifferentialFormat



Hi @Brett_Loman,

Thanks for the detailed writeup! Looks like you figured it out before I could finish replying :slight_smile: Just one thing for reference, for anyone who gets here from google – it is possible to use Qurro outside of QIIME 2, if you’d prefer. There’s an example of this in this tutorial.


Thanks for the reply and additional options - much appreciated :slight_smile:


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