Developing Bioinformatics Computer Skills Paperback – Apr 2001
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An invaluable aid, this book has much to offer the novice bioinformaticist and should be strongly considered by those who are new to the field. -- Darryl Nishamura, Biotech Software & Internet report, Vol 2 No 5, 2001
Overall, I HIGHLY recommend this book to Computer Scientists, Biologists, and even people already involved in Bioinformatics. -- Brandon King, Cerritos Linux Users Group, April 2002 --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
From the Publisher
Developing Bioinformatics Computer Skills will help biologists, researchers, and students develop a structured approach to biological data and the computer tools they'll need to analyze it. The book covers the Unix file system, building tools and databases for bioinformatics, computational approaches to biological problems, an introduction to Perl for bioinformatics, data mining, data visualization, and tips for tailoring data analysis software to individual research needs. --This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.See all Product Description
Top Customer Reviews
Bioinformatics is a ripe apple waiting to be eaten. Bioinformatics simply stated is the computational and analytical methods to biological problems. If this sounds like an open ended explanation, it is. In fact, according to O'Reilly's definitive publication on the topic, "Developing Bioinformatics Computer Skills" by Cynthia Gibas and Per Jambeck, there are several different definitions to Bioinformatics, but suffice to say all revolve around applying IT to the management of biological data.
Chapters one through six delineate the basics including the typical and common software and hardware requirements for Bioinformatics. I will tell you right now if you want to be successful in this fresh field, you must learn Unix. The book points out why. Unix is used extensively in universities and academia where the abundance of software for scientific data analysis is developed. Not to mention in the mid nineties, the only workstations able to visualize protein data structure in real-time were Silicon Graphics and Sun Unix workstations. Linux fans rejoice!Read more ›
That said, I found the material a bit uneven. The authors tend to jump from almost trivial stuff to very complex in a heartbeat, and they sometimes use a concept or command before it can be properly understood One example: Introducing the Unix commands head and tail, then moving on to split and csplit. The introduction to regular expressions as needed by csplit follows a few pages later.
Nevertheless, I plan to use this book as a companion text to my own sequence of computer classes for biologists, and I think it will serve that purpose very well.
This book is a real broad swatch of all the different skills that one needs to know to assume a basic competency in bioinformatics. On page 14, they actually list core essential skills and "nice to have skills". molecular biology, Unix, Perl, algorithms, major biology software packages are all on the essential core list. The auuthors really take the viewpoint on here is how to set your computer up (on a budget!), web sites to go to and so on. Not knowing Unix and not having it currently on my computer made the two Unix/Linux chapters academic.
The book is great from the perspective of seeing the big picture. Where it falls down is in the depth department. "Predicting Protein Structure and Function from Sequence" is covered in 35 pages! It is impossible to understand this subject in 35 pages - yet the authors conveyed a sense of the subject and how it fits into a larger picture.
If you are familiar with the subject and want in depth treatment, this is not the book.
if you want an introduction "big picture" book this could serve your needs.
Most recent customer reviews
This book is the worst I've ever purchased. It has been no help whatsoever. It had a couple examples of PERL programming...big deal. Read morePublished on June 10 2004
We are all well aware that it is impossible to write a book on bioinformatics satisfying all types of readers. Read morePublished on Dec 2 2003 by Seungwoo Hwang
This is a quite good book for people who have little background in Bioinformatics or Computer Science. Read morePublished on Oct. 2 2003 by doudou1229
No indepth analysis in the topics presented. But this book could be really useful for those people who would like a quick review of many topics overnight for an interview or so. Read morePublished on June 30 2002 by B. John
The book is at a level of a magazine article overview, just longer. With some editing it probably could have made it into a magazine.Published on May 18 2002 by Hisashi T. Fujinaka
AWFUL BOOK. HAS MANY MANY ERRORS. SAVE YOUR MONEY. NOT USEFUL.
THE WRITERS DO NOT KNOW WHAT THEY ARE TALKING ABOUT.
Awful book. Not useful at all. FILLED WITH A TON OF INACCURACIES, ESPECIALLY IN THE GENETICS CENTRAL DOGMA AREA. Read morePublished on April 29 2002
Most biological scientists are comfortable in Windows-based environments (Mac or Wintel) and can migrate from one to the other. They are also happy on the web. Read morePublished on Sept. 27 2001 by Peter J. Neame