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Introduction to Bioinformatics Project Management

Introduction to Bioinformatics Project Management

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From experimental layout to publication, bioinformatics project management is the procedure of keeping a record of a project's many inputs and outputs. Many project elements are created to coordinate the project's inputs and outputs. Project management is directly connected to how these elements interact with one another and how they are organized. The primary elements of project management include but may not be restricted to:

  • Folders and Files,
  • Notebook record of commands, thought process and related code,
  • Backup of raw data and analysis files,
  • Communication and Discussion, and
  • Record of time spent.

Folders and Files

Despite the operating system, most people utilize folders to arrange their files (Windows, IOS, Linux). A small change in the way folders classified can make it much easier for others to follow what you did, in the order that you did it, and in the location that you did it.

Notebook

If science is not recorded, it can't be replicated. Paper notebooks have customarily been used in the wet lab to document the science is done that day and the results. Science is documented electronically in a digital notebook in bioinformatics.

Analysis Folder Backup and Cleanup

The backup of your raw data and analysis folders is an essential part of the project life cycle.

1. Following the completion of a project and the return of the data to the researcher. Any analyses that are safe to delete are removed from the folder.
a. Attempts that failed and folders that are no longer needed.
b. Before generating the bam file, align intermediates (sam).
c. Split any files that were created before combining them to produce a final combined output.
d. Other types of files or outputs that can be produced Programs like Trinity should be avoided because they can generate hundreds of thousands (300,000-1,000,000) files. Those files must be deleted (cleaned up).

2. Backups of raw data should be kept on a separate server.

Communication and Discussion

It is beneficial to have a running dialogue of progress and discussion for each project in a group with numerous active projects that can be easily linked to and searched. Frequently, this takes the form of email exchanges.

Record Time of Spent

With a lot of trial and error, bioinformatics projects can be time-consuming and frustrating. It is common to feel as if nothing has been achieved at the end of a week. Keeping track of how much time you spend on a daily basis can help you relax. This is simple to do with a Google spreadsheet that has the days of the month as columns and project names as rows on the left. There should be two rows for each project: hours invested and a summary of what you did. Because the number of hours in a day is less than two digits, the column widths can be kept small and the description can simply flow into adjacent cells. It's also beneficial to see how you spend your time so you can better handle your work/life balance, as well as offer equipment for those in your group to manage their work/life balance.

About CD Genomics Bioinformatics Analysis

The bioinformatics analysis department of CD Genomics provides novel solutions for data-driven innovation aimed at discovering the hidden potential in biological data, tapping new insights related to life science research, and predicting new prospects.

References

  1. Via A, Blicher T, Bongcam-Rudloff E, et al. Best practices in bioinformatics training for life scientists. Briefings in bioinformatics. 2013, 14(5).
  2. Alba E, Chicano JF. Software project management with GAs. Information Sciences. 2007, 177(11).
  3. Stevens RD, Robinson AJ, Goble CA. myGrid: personalised bioinformatics on the information grid. Bioinformatics. 2003, 19(suppl_1).
* For Research Use Only. Not for use in diagnostic procedures.
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