Big data for everyone

Article by Henrietta Howells: “Raw neuroimaging data require further processing before they can be used for scientific or clinical research. Traditionally, this could be accomplished with a single powerful computer. However, much greater computing power is required to analyze the large open-access cohorts that are increasingly being released to the community. And processing pipelines are inconsistently scripted, which can hinder reproducibility efforts. This creates a barrier for labs lacking access to sufficient resources or technological support, potentially excluding them from neuroimaging research. A paper by Hayashi and colleagues in Nature Methods offers a solution. They present, a freely available, web-based platform for secure neuroimaging data access, processing, visualization and analysis. It leverages ‘opportunistic computing’, which pools processing power from commercial and academic clouds, making it accessible to scientists worldwide. This is a step towards lowering the barriers for entry into big data neuroimaging research…(More)”.