Practical computing for biologists (and other scientists)

Date6-Jun-2011 ~ 15-Jun-2011
ProjectPractical computing for biologists (and other scientists)
SummaryThis course covers some of the simple but powerful skills that all scientists should know in a world of increasingly complex analyses. This is not a bioinformatics course, although the lessons are applicable to molecular data. The skills are relevant to any subdiscipline where gathering and analyzing moderate to large data sets are involved. The specific sections include working with text files, command-line operations, scripting and Python programming, creating scientific graphics, working with servers (remote login, software installation), and a bit about the web and data-acquisition hardware. This course is timely because biologists and other researchers are expected to analyze larger and more complex data sets, but using inadequate tools like spreadsheets. Although the examples will be shown making use of Mac OSX and its Unix underpinnings, all of the tools discussed are cross-platform and freely available. Participants will be able to take the techniques and skills they learn back to their labs to continue making their own research easier and more effective. The target audience for the course is anyone with data: grad students, post-docs, technicians, and faculty.