Contributed by DJ Darwin Bandoy, DVM
I personally believe that biology is a big data puzzle. That is also the main reason why I took my PhD in the Weimer lab with the 100K Pathogen Genome Project. But when I started in the lab, I also realized that before you can do any biology with large scale sequencing data, you need to tame the metadata. This requires at the minimum scripting techniques in Excel, which is practically a form of coding. But transposition of multimillion rows and columns is limited in Excel, hence the need for more robust tools like OpenRefine and eventually command-line tools. So yes, a biologist should and must code.