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Notes on the Two Classes of Analysis Projects

A search project processes a substantial amount of gravitational-wave data with the goal of searching for GW signals. Since it uses GW data, it is carried out on behalf of the LSC. A full-LSC-author-list paper may be planned, or else there may not be a plan to write a paper if the search is inconclusive, but if it DOES find a signal, then it would (obviously) be reported in a full-LSC-author-list paper. The Burst Group has an obligation to understand and approve the project at its outset and to keep tabs on its progress. An initial presentation must be made to the group to describe the scientific goals, methods, people involved, and approximate timeline; this provides an opportunity for feedback from the group on the scope and details of the project, which could potentially raise issues that need to be worked out before the project is approved by the group. The initial presentation must be made before any substantial amount of GW data is searched. After a project is approved to begin, the people working on the project must maintain a summary page and technical documentation and make periodic progress reports.

A development project intends to figure out HOW to carry out some kind of search. It may be theoretical or may use simulated data, or even a limited amount of real GW data, to develop and test methods and to tune algorithm parameters; but it does not actually search any significant real data set for GW signals. The work done on a development project might lead to a methods paper with a limited (i.e. not full-LSC) author list. Still, the Burst Group should be aware of what is being done, and may be able to offer constructive feedback; therefore, each development project should be laid out in an initial presentation to the Burst Group. However, the Burst Group does not need to approve the project. There are no specific requirements for documentation or periodic progress reports, but documentation and occasional progress reports would naturally be desirable.

It is quite possible that there can be more than one approach under development aiming at the same scientific goal; these are considered to be part of the same development project, and the people involved should exchange ideas, share investigation methods (e.g. test data sets and simulated signals), and generally work as a team to compare and contrast the different approaches.

Eventually, a development project will succeed in coming up with a good way of carrying out a search. However, it does not automatically become a search project, and no GW data set should be searched until the "initial presentation" is given to the Burst Group and the project is approved as a search project, as described above.

The Burst Group's "Analysis projects" web page has two tables, one for search projects and the other for development projects. A project may be added to the appropriate table once the initial presentation has been given, and has been approved by the group in the case of a search project. We will also keep the "Scientific Menu" notebook entry to list all ideas and provide links to the associated project summaries, where they exist.

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