Graphical User Interfaces for the Management of Scientific Experiments and Data
Yannis Ioannidis
Miron Livny
Eben M. Haber
Date published: 
Published In: 
ACM SIGMOD Record, Vol. 20, No. 1, March 1992, pp. 47-53
Journal Article

If one were to conduct a survey among researchers from all sciences asking for the greatest challenges in their particular discipline, one would expect very different answers from scientists of different backgrounds. Although this is true in general, there is at least one issue that is perceived as a major challenge in most disciplines: experiment and data management. Managing the experiment and the data produced throughout its life cycle has become the bottleneck of many experimental studies. In many cases, this significantly limits the scale of the experiments. We have reached this conclusion from our own experience with experimental computer science as well as many discussions that we have had with scientists from a wide range of experimental disciplines (Biotechnology, Genetics, Molecular Biology, Soil Sciences, Space Sciences, and High Energy Physics). While some scientists store data in hundreds of flat files or in the best case under a simple relational database system, most of them still use paper notebooks, which are clearly inadequate tools for large-scale experimentation.

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