A Friday round-up

Just a brief selection of items that caught my eye this week. Note that this is a Friday as opposed to Friday, lest you mistake this for a new, regular feature.

1. R/statistics

  • ggbio
  • A new Bioconductor package which builds on the excellent ggplot graphics library, for the visualization of biological data.

  • R development master class
  • Hadley Wickham recently presented this course on R package development for my organisation. I was on parental leave at the time, otherwise I would have attended for sure.

2. Bioinformatics in the media
DNA Sequencing Caught in Deluge of Data

I described this NYT article as a “surprisingly-good intro article“. Michael Eisen described it as “kind of silly“.

I think we’re both right. Michael’s perspective is that of an expert in high-throughput sequencing data; I’m just pleased to see an introduction to bioinformatics for non-specialists in a mainstream newspaper. And I note that they have corrected the figure caption which offended Michael.

As to the “deluge”: yes, there are other sciences that generate more data and yes, we probably don’t need to archive/analyse a lot of the raw data. However, I’d contend that the basic premise of the article is correct: we are sequencing faster than we can analyse. The solution, obviously, is more bioinformaticians.

2 thoughts on “A Friday round-up

  1. Jonathan Badger

    My mom liked that article too. But I think she was just happy to see some validation for this weird job that I do that she can’t really explain to her friends (“he’s a biologist, but he doesn’t actually work in a lab or use test tubes”)

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