chthonicdaemon writes "I work at a university, and as the new year starts to gain momentum it is time to start planning the experimental work that will be done. This involves doing a design of experiment and planning how to store the results. At the moment, each student or researcher who does any kind of experiment effectively has to roll his own data management system, whether it be text files, Excel or a more sophisticated approach like databases. However, most experiments that we do will be very similar. The differences in storing the results mean that people find it hard to share their experimental data. It also means that a lot of standard processing needs to be recoded/redone by everyone. We have looked at software like Design-Expert, which seems very much like what we want. However, it is expensive and doesn't solve the problem of sharing data because its database is proprietary. It also does not consider experiments that involve time series as results. I have also looked into HDF, which seems like a good choice for data, but I haven't found a good set of experiment management tools that interact with HDF.
In short, what are you guys using to do the following parts of experimental work: (1) Design the experiment: set up the design space and constraints, create optimal designs and so forth (2) Store the experimental results in a way that can be shared with other researchers (3) Analyse the results in an experiment-aware way (datapoints tagged with dates and/or block numbers etc). Ideally the whole design, with results and analyses should be e-mailable (perhaps after zipping)."