What’s the Answer? (projects for bioinformatics beginners)

BioStar is a site for asking, answering and discussing bioinformatics questions. We are members of the community and find it very useful. Often questions and answers arise at BioStar that are germane to our readers (end users of genomics resources). Every Thursday we will be highlighting one of those questions and answers here in this thread. You can ask questions in this thread, or you can always join in at BioStar.

This week’s highlighted question is….unusual. Actually, it’s something that I’d also be interested to know if the community has an answer for this.

Project for a beginner bioinformatics student

I was wondering if someone could suggest an interesting coding project for a beginner bioinformatics student. I am actually a senior computer science major, so my programming skills are pretty good. I have been reading articles here and there but would like to do some hands on projects – just not sure where to start! Any advice is appreciated.

–And

There’s no selected answer yet, but if anyone who reads here has an answer I’d be delighted to know. And if you aren’t signed up on BioStar I’d encourage you to do so, or I could bring it over. As you see if you go over and look at the question, this is actually something I’ve been asked a number of times–and multiple people rated up my comment, which surprised me, so the need may be broader.

There are people teaching bioinformatics at a lot of small schools who aren’t completely tied in to research projects, and they could really use some good ideas for coding projects for students. They’d like them to be useful, and if a student was to talk about (or write up) the details it should have some need and merit.

Does anyone know if there’s any sort of a matching service? I can imagine there are biologists out there who could use a little bit of coding help for some tasks they do too….