Data organization is key to saving time and frustration when you don’t have to waste time looking for where you stored everything. As one frustrated PhD student expressed, “I have got so much data on a thousand different machines… and I cannot keep track of it all. I do not remember what I save to what or where it is, whether I’ve backed it up or not. Anytime I’m getting ready for a conference, presentation, or review I spend hours and hours just trying to find everything! Everything else in my life is overly organized except the one thing that is most important—my RESEARCH! I dread having to write my thesis because I don’t think I’ll be able to find all my data…” If your data is organized and stored in one place, it is easy to keep track of and access whenever you need it.
"Keeping results data, and knowledge in context is one of the main challenges for research groups," states Jonathan Gross BioData's CEO & Founder "We see researchers running three to five experiments concurrently, spending hours on collecting results but failing to properly document it".
Data also has to be accessible and stored securely. 56% of the researchers surveyed stored their data on a hard drive. There is a problem with storing data in one place, as many learned the hard way from Hurricane Katrina, when an incredible amount of data was lost. One researcher from New Orleans’ Tulane University pointed out, “Before Hurricane Katrina, there was no backup system at all. Now, they issued everyone a 80GB external drive and gave them stern warnings that there would be no rescue missions for hard drives if another levee breach occurred… Surely we can do better than this..”
Noble suggests storing data online, as hard drives cannot be accessed once you are out of the lab, and as another researcher pointed out
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