Searching public databases from mobile apps: better feedback

searchrtA few iterations ago, some of the flagship mobile apps from Molecular Materials Informatics (namely the Mobile Molecular DataSheet, SAR Table and MolPrime+) added an integrated feature for searching public databases by name and structure. The feature works through a webservice meta-layer that currently wraps PubChem and ChEBI.

The use case is very convenient, but one of the downsides for the presently available features is that the webservice connection is carried out as a single operation, with no feedback until the search is complete. From a user experience point of view, an operation with no progress indicator gives the impression of taking about 10x as long as one that provides useful feedback. Continue reading

ACS redux

The American Chemical Society meeting in New Orleans (April 2013) is now all wrapped up – at least for me anyway, there may be some last vestiges of action still going on. It was a fun meeting, and even though I spent the entire time either talking shop or sleeping, the choice of city didn’t hurt. I managed to experience a number of the highlights while prowling around with gangs on fellow chemists.

My two presentations are now available online:

  • COMP division: Mobile + Cloud: A replacement for desktop cheminformatics? (slideshare, figshare)
  • CINF division: Pistoia Alliance AppStore: Apps for life sciences R&D (slideshare, figshare)

Also, I was thrilled to see the C&E Picks video feed include a large segment of the footage that I provided, which shows the SAR Table app in action, and the SPRESImobile app is in there too. Mobile apps for chemistry are making their way further up the food-chain!