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Last update: Apr 1, 2000

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A Comparison of Data Analysis Packages

Irwin Gaines, Jeff Kallenbach

Speaker: Irwin Gaines

  A modern data analysis package for HEP may offer many advanced features, such as sophisticated graphical user interfaces, specialized data formats and data access methods, and compatability with object oriented user code and data structures.
  But in any case the package must offer the standard features provided for many years by PAW including efficient data access to high energy physics data formats, data analysis using scripts and high level language user routines, mathematical manipulation of data quantities, preservation of analysis sessions for later use, and data presentation with both interactive and publication quality graphics.
  We describe here an evaluation and comparison of several new generation data analysis packages, concentrating on ROOT (a HEP developed product) and IDL (a commercial product). We report on a set of user requirements developed in collaboration with the FNAL Run II collider experiments (CDF and D0). We then discuss both how well the candidate products can perform the traditional functions and the range of more advanced features offered, looking in particular at options for organizing high energy physics data in optimized file formats for efficient data analysis, analyzing extremely large (multi GigaByte) data samples, using the inherent object structure of user data, and using the web and other modern tools for data presentation.

Presentation:  PowerPoint 

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