Chemical Informatics Letters

Volume 11, Issue 2; August 2005

Editor: Jonathan M Goodman

Green Chemistry Assistant
This website from St Olaf College which is aimed mainly at undergraduates and does some chemical calculations and analyses the 'greeness' of processes.

PhysChem Forum
The PhysChem Forum aims to generate an environment for informed debate and discussion in a non-commercial setting within the physical chemistry / ADMET industry. It is organised by a consortium of analytical and pharmaceutical companies.

Yahoo now bigger than Google ?
According to the Yahoo search blog, Yahoo indexes twenty billion items. This is more than Google which currently indexes about eight million web pages. Does Google need to catch up? The size of the index is only one measure of the quality of a search engine. At the beginning of August 2005, a search for "Chemical Informatics" on Yahoo put Chemical Informatics Letters in first place, and correctly notes its new address: At the same time, Google still indexed the old address, which is now just a forwarding page. Google is also under pressure from IBM which is giving searching more emphasis. Baidu, is also developing the Chinese-language internet area. Google, however, provides an increasing number of resources, including Google Site Maps, which helps sites to be efficiently indexed.

Applications of Cheminformatics and Chemical Modelling to Drug Discovery
The eCheminfo Autumn 2005 InterAction Meetings will take place on October 11th and 12th at Bryn Mawr College, Philadelphia, USA and on November 9th and 10th at the Swissotel L'entrée Conference Center, Basel, Switzerland.

Internet Scout Project
The Scout Project has been developing tools and services for finding, filtering and presenting on-line information since 1994, at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. It has report on physical and life sciences as well as many other areas

Is open source software a good basis for a company?
It is possible to start a company that makes an income from open-source software, with great success. In addition. free software grants are available, but are small change in the context of a start up company.

Using open-source software rather than selling it seems to have clear benefits, as ;ots of resources are available. However, companies should worry whether open-source suppliers be able to provide long-term support?. The next wave of open source products might provide reassurance, and many companies betting on open source products.

This approach may be particularly beneficial for start-ups. It seems a good time to start a start up and to be an entrepreneur.

Can an open access freely updated knowledge resource really work? The Wikipedia shows that it can. Despite reports that tighter editorial controls are needed and being implemented, the wikipedia continues business as usual.

Python in bioinformatics and chemical informatics
An essay by Andrew Dalke suggesting that Python may be the standard high-level programming language for chemical informatics, just as Perl is the de facto standard for bioinformatics despite the contributions of Java and Python. This prediction has some way to go before it can be validated.

US attitude to chemical data
The Cornell University Law School provides information on US commerce and trade codes, some of which are relevant to chemistry. Title 15, Commerce and Trade includes a chapter on Toxic Substances Control. "Adequate data should be developed with respect to the effect of chemical substances and mixtures on health and the environment and that the development of such data should be the responsibility of those who manufacture and those who process such chemical substances and mixtures".

In the section on Research, Development, Collection, Dissemination And Utilization Of Data: "The Administrator shall ... design, establish, and coordinate an efficient and effective system for the retrieval of toxicological and other scientific data which could be useful to the Administrator in carrying out the purposes of this Act. Systematized retrieval shall be developed for use by all Federal and other departments and agencies with responsibilities in the area of regulation or study of chemical substances and mixtures and their effect on health or the environment" and "The Administrator shall ... establish and coordinate a system for exchange among Federal, State, and local authorities of research and development results respecting toxic chemical substances and mixtures, including a system to facilitate and promote the development of standard data format and analysis and consistent testing procedures."

Sciproof is a program containing a database of quarter of a million technical, scientific, medical and chemical terms, to aid in scientific writing. This is by no means a trivial process.

3D molecular designs
How is it possible to produce models of molecules? This company has a system for generating 3D molecular designs.

Masters course in Chemical Informatics
This course should have been included with the others listed in: Chem. Inf. Lett. 2005, 10, #5, 50.

© 2005 J M Goodman, Cambridge
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