We're a little crazy, about science!

A race to the deadline

Yet another day closer to my deadline for this EEG project and I’m still trying to pre-process my data so that I can make sense of it. We’re racing the clock here and my PI is pushing me to get it done, sure I think I can do it, but then again… maybe not?

10 datasets, 64 channels, and a few million data points… EACH! Most of the work my computer can do on its own. I just set it and forget it, but that’s the problem, I can’t make it go any faster, there’s nothing more I can do. It’s a sit and beg the computer to hurry situation.

Then comes the parts that I can control (still pre-processing mind you!). There is a very time consuming manual step that I need to perform, that’s about 2-3 hours a dataset depending on how thorough I want to be. Notice I’m taking a high level approach to discussing what needs to happen, that’s because it’s a lot to type out and even more to explain the why behind what I’m doing.

Once that happens I need to segment the data by condition. In a perfect world this would be easy. I put “flags” in my data labeling each section so I know what is what. The problem is that on occasion I may have pressed the wrong button before pressing the correct one causing a double flag situation that I need to manually fix before I can segment. I also need to write code specifically to segment the data, which takes time and a lot of effort.

After I have everything pre-processed and segmented, I can then turn my attention to making sense of the data. There are quite a few ways this can go, but most of what we do in our lab revolves around frequency analysis which I touched on yesterday. Thankfully once I do this step then I can make some pretty plots and hit my deadline, which is in ~5 days from now.

That’s what I’m working towards and right now I have most of the data pre-processed with the exception of the time consuming step that I just mentioned which will take ~2-3 hours of manual work. The segmenting may or may not take a long time, it will be one of those wait and see situations. Fingers crossed I make it, I really cannot afford to piss off my PI again. We’ll have to wait to see though.

With that it’s back to work I go. Tomorrow I’m hoping to have all the automated stuff done and can switch gears to the manual steps. At least then I have some control over how it works out. Wish me luck, I’m going to need it!

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