In a modern society, various means of electronic communications have become a norm of everyday life. In recent years, numerous laboratories in academia and industry have started to adopt Electronic Laboratory Notebook(ELN) software. ELN’s serve as the electronic repositories for the numerous records generated by the laboratory staff. An ELN can improve laboratory operations in many ways, several of them are listed below:
- An ELN offers free-form and structured data capture techniques through userfriendly web interface. The entered data is organized into Projects classified on the nature of the activity.
- Laboratory Protocols, instrument schedules, and other documents are shared between the ELN users by means of a designated project; for example “Laboratory Activities Coordination”.
- Supplies ordering, instrument maintenance, and laboratory safety functions can be managed using the records created within a designated shared project.
- Experiment-specific Note Templates empower laboratories to establish standards for documenting research.
- ELN Notes can include images, tables, links to files, and click-able links to other Notes.
- Web-based user interface greatly expands the ELN data accessibility range: office, home, or other locations – the electronic records can be displayed, edited, and saved.
- The users of an ELN have an ability to share their electronic records with the colleagues working in other organizations. ELN can be a contributor to a fruitful collaboration.
- The ELN users can design Project Templates which can be cloned, greatly reducing the amount of time needed for the creation of the new data structure.
- Note Templates minimize repetitive recording, thereby increasing the efficiency of the laboratory operations. New Note Templates can be created and saved by the ELN users.
- ELN Search Tools cut down the time needed to locate the information of interest.
Sciency® ELN from RURO, Inc. is software of choice in order to achieve the improvements described above. Adoption of an ELN technology is a “green” initiative; it reduces the amount of paper used by a laboratory, contributing to a better environment for all of us.