Flywheel search is a powerful feature to:
- discover data across multiple projects. You may search projects from your own lab, or projects from other labs. Search results are from project you have permissions to access, but you may request access from the owner once you know it’s there!
- combine data from multiple projects into a Collection. The combined data can serve as a basis for further investigation, collaboration, or pilot projects.
- find data you know is in Flywheel, but simply forgot where it is.
The Search Bar: Fuzzy Matching
To initiate a search, type a search string in the Search Box on the left sidebar, then press enter. Alternatively, you may put your cursor in the box without typing a string and pressing enter.
Anything search terms entered into the top Search Bar will utilize a "fuzzy" matching algorithm that adjusts for possible misspellings, etc. If an exact match is required, entering the search term or selecting one of the custom fields will produce the desired result.
This will enable the search sidebar on the left of the screen, and display search results on the right of the screen. The search sidebar will display search facets based on the resulting dataset. Search facets currently include the following 7 facets:
- File Type
- Session Timestamp
- Subject Age
- Custom Fields
Selecting these facets will dynamically update search results. Search results are presented in one of four views as tab across to the top of the search results:
Suppose we are searching for nifti files of T1-weighted anatomical data from male subjects between the ages of 50 and 70.
The first group of options lets you select between various File Types. We restrict the search to nifti files by clicking on the box adjacent to the string ‘nifti’.
The second group of options lets you select between various Data Classifications. In this example, we select the fourth data option, ‘anatomy_t1w’.
The search uses a technology that is extremely fast (much less than a second even for large databases). The search results are returned in the data panel at the right.
Now, scroll down in the search sidebar to view more options. There are many more search filtering facets such as TIMESTAMP, SEX, AGE, and others.
In the SEX facet, we choose ‘male’. The age distribution of the subjects is approximated by the histogram. Using the slider we select an age range (50-70). We find that the database contains 161 sessions containing a nifti file with anatomical T1-weighted data from a male.
A Session refers to an hour or so of scanning, with multiple Acquisitions. Hence, it will include data beyond the specific files in this search. We might decide, therefore, to adjust the search to return only Acquisitions or Files that meet the criteria. You can do this by selecting the Acquisitions tab or the Files tab in the data panel at the right.
In the case below, we selected the Files option. Because some of the Sessions have multiple files that meet the criteria, we find that there are 233 nifti T1-weighted anatomicals from men between 50 and 70 years of age. Also, we see that these files come from different projects.
To preserve the results of this search, you might examine the ‘Acquisitions’ (there are 193). Use the ‘Select’ button to choose them and the ‘Actions’ pull-down to create a Collection that contains these Acquisitions. Such Collection would be a convenient place to work from for further analysis, such as running a Batch Gear.
Search Scope: If you enter search from the project dashboard screen, your search query will be executed against all projects you have permissions to. To limit the scope of the search to data from a single project, you may enter the name of the project in the top "Project" search facet.
AND / OR: Selecting a box restricts the search. When you select two boxes from within the same group (e.g., File Type), the search will return data that meet either of the two selections (‘OR’). When you select boxes from the different groups (File Type and Data Classification), the search will return data that meet both criteria (‘AND’).
Custom Fields: The last search facet is ‘CUSTOM FIELDS’. That box provides a way to enter and find more custom fields. For example, if you type ‘subject’ you will be given further search options related to the subject category.
Search Box Text: Note that typing ‘anatomy_t1w’ or ‘nifti’ into the Search box is NOT the same as selecting data with this classification; a diffusion scan may have a note about related anatomy_t1w data and in that case the diffusion data classification will still appear as a possible selection in the sidebar
Viewing Results: Depending on the results of your search, multiple tabs will appear at the top of the page indicating how many Sessions, Acquisitions, Files, and Analyses meet your search criteria. To view these results, select the tab that corresponds to the data you are looking for. Select the data to view its information on the Session Detail section of the page.
Exiting Search: Use the Exit search link at the top of the search sidebar to exit search. You will return to the page you were work with before you initiated for the search.