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Connecting Scientific Data to Scientific Experiments with Provenance
Miles, Simon and Deelman, Ewa and Groth, Paul and Vahi, Karan and Mehta, Gaurang and Moreau, Luc (2007) Connecting Scientific Data to Scientific Experiments with Provenance. In: Proceedings of the International eScience Conference 2007, December 2007, Bangalore, India. (In Press)
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As scientific workflows and the data they operate on, grow in size and complexity, the task of defining how those workflows should execute (which resources to use, where the resources must be in readiness for processing etc.) becomes proportionally more difficult. While "workflow compilers", such as Pegasus, reduce this burden, a further problem arises: since specifying details of execution is now automatic, a workflow's results are harder to interpret, as they are partly due to specifics of execution. By automating steps between the experiment design and its results, we lose the connection between them, hindering interpretation of results. To reconnect the scientific data with the original experiment, we argue that scientists should have access to the full provenance of their data, including not only parameters, inputs and intermediary data, but also the abstract experiment, refined into a concrete execution by the "workflow compiler". In this paper, we describe preliminary work on adapting Pegasus to capture the process of workflow refinement in the PASOA provenance system.
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