2006 09 26 Beyond Chemistry

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A well-received presentation on ELNs beyond Chemistry, from the IQPC ELN conference in London Sept 2006

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2006 09 26 Beyond Chemistry

  1. 1. Beyond Chemistry Simon Coles CTO, Amphora Research Systems 1 simonc@amphora-research.com
  2. 2. About Me • First ELN was a “Big” ELN as a consulting engagement for Kodak in late 90’s • One thing let to another • Co-Founder and CTO of Amphora 2 simonc@amphora-research.com
  3. 3. About Amphora • We do the “Broad” stuff • Keep lawyers & records management happy (paper or electronic) • Cross-discipline searchability • Some of our customers are here, some are speaking 3 simonc@amphora-research.com
  4. 4. This Presentation • Hot of the press! • More than happy to email it to you • Email address at the bottom of the slides or grab me later 4 simonc@amphora-research.com
  5. 5. This Presentation • Hot of the press! • More than happy to email it to you • Email address at the bottom of the slides or grab me later 4 simonc@amphora-research.com
  6. 6. Audience Survey 5 simonc@amphora-research.com
  7. 7. Audience Survey • Do you have a Med. Chem ELN project (in progress or complete?) 5 simonc@amphora-research.com
  8. 8. Audience Survey • Do you have a Med. Chem ELN project (in progress or complete?) • Do you have other kinds of scientists? 5 simonc@amphora-research.com
  9. 9. Audience Survey • Do you have a Med. Chem ELN project (in progress or complete?) • Do you have other kinds of scientists? • Are you deploying into • A regulated environment • A discovery environment 5 simonc@amphora-research.com
  10. 10. The ELN journey (In two Acts) 6 simonc@amphora-research.com
  11. 11. Act I • Chemists are the most vocal, and can demonstrate some kind ROI • And you can buy one! From multiple vendors! • Let’s do that then... I’m sure once we’ve done that we can re-use it for our other scientists • Because they all use notebooks, right? 7 simonc@amphora-research.com
  12. 12. Meanwhile... Everyone else is getting on with business 8 simonc@amphora-research.com
  13. 13. Act II • Happy chemists • Generally, band-aided the Patent problem • Now, we’ve got an ELN • The rest of them want one too • So given we’ve already got one • Easy decision? 9 simonc@amphora-research.com
  14. 14. Typical Reactions 10 simonc@amphora-research.com
  15. 15. Typical Reactions • “We don’t work like that” 10 simonc@amphora-research.com
  16. 16. Typical Reactions • “We don’t work like that” • “I doesn’t work with our applications” 10 simonc@amphora-research.com
  17. 17. Typical Reactions • “We don’t work like that” • “I doesn’t work with our applications” • “Why should we bother” 10 simonc@amphora-research.com
  18. 18. Typical Reactions • “We don’t work like that” • “I doesn’t work with our applications” • “Why should we bother” • “Very Expensive” 10 simonc@amphora-research.com
  19. 19. Typical Reactions • “We don’t work like that” • “I doesn’t work with our applications” • “Why should we bother” • “Very Expensive” • “You’ve made Excel harder to use” 10 simonc@amphora-research.com
  20. 20. What’s going on? 11 simonc@amphora-research.com
  21. 21. Why an ELN? • Because the existing solution sucks • Cut & Stick computer printouts • Can’t search (like Google) 12 simonc@amphora-research.com
  22. 22. Why an ELN? • “Easily use computer applications in the course of our work” • “Search our work” • “See other people’s work” • “If our discipline does special stuff, deal with that” 13 simonc@amphora-research.com
  23. 23. The “special stuff” • Organic Chemistry has a clear, widely-used notation which rewards specific support • There’s a Cheminformatics industry! • Other disciplines do too • But they’re much more specialised • Can often be represented as text of graphics 14 simonc@amphora-research.com
  24. 24. What they didn’t say • “Replace the applications I use day-to-day” • In fact, they want an ELN to make using those easier! • “Make my life more complex” • “Give me stuff I don’t need” 15 simonc@amphora-research.com
  25. 25. The result • Chemistry-centric ELNs don’t tend to be well received outside of Chemistry • Frustrating for involved 16 simonc@amphora-research.com
  26. 26. Note • Science is very broad • I am generalising • Your mileage may vary • I’m just trying to help people think 17 simonc@amphora-research.com
  27. 27. Science is huge 18 simonc@amphora-research.com
  28. 28. Different Styles • Chemistry tends to be pretty structured and routine • Other disciplines have much greater variation in the work 19 simonc@amphora-research.com
  29. 29. Tools • Chemistry tends to focus on the structures, reactions, properties, drawing & animating them etc. • Other disciplines have a much wider set of tools • And use Excel as a “Swiss Army Knife” • Scientists are knowledge workers too 20 simonc@amphora-research.com
  30. 30. Less is more From http://headrush.typepad.com/creating_passionate_users/2006/week30/index.html
  31. 31. Part of the problem is the term “ELN” 22 simonc@amphora-research.com
  32. 32. Questions • If the paper notebook didn’t exist would we coin the term “Electronic” notebook? • If it wasn’t for the term “ELN” would we look for one system? • Why are all the “ELN” vendors (outside of chemistry) so different? • Where are the non-chemistry ELNs? 23 simonc@amphora-research.com
  33. 33. Where do they work? • Excel • In-house experiment planning tools • Word • Lotus Notes • Filemaker • OneNote • InfoPath/SharePoint • LIMS • ISIS/Draw • ERP • Wikis • File Servers • Blogging tools (e.g. Wordpress) 24 simonc@amphora-research.com
  34. 34. What are they doing? • Experiments - just like everyone else • Just because they aren’t working in a product with “ELN” stamped on it, doesn’t mean it isn’t proper science 25 simonc@amphora-research.com
  35. 35. As a rule, it is much better if you pay attention to each discipline individually 26 simonc@amphora-research.com
  36. 36. The “One System” death magnet 27 simonc@amphora-research.com
  37. 37. One solution? User quote: Anyone who claims one solution solves all problems... 28 simonc@amphora-research.com
  38. 38. One solution? User quote: Anyone who claims one solution solves all problems... ...is a salesman 28 simonc@amphora-research.com
  39. 39. Do you need one solution? • Not unless you buy something crazily proprietary • In which case you probably don’t want it anyway • Integration is a fact of life 29 simonc@amphora-research.com
  40. 40. Can you buy One Solution? • Yes, if you only do one kind of science • Yes, if you are prepared to do an awful lot of customisation • Yes, if architecture is more important than users • Yes if you will never change what you do 30 simonc@amphora-research.com
  41. 41. Some Suggestions 31 simonc@amphora-research.com
  42. 42. Project Structure • Divide your problem into • Corporate aspects • Different disciples • Solve the corporate stuff centrally • Let the different user groups do what they need to do • Encourage/enforce collaboration 32 simonc@amphora-research.com
  43. 43. A framework Corporate aspects (Records, IP protection, Sharing) Medicinal Chemistry Process Chemistry Molecular Biology Pharmacology Etc. 33 simonc@amphora-research.com
  44. 44. The “Deep” systems • If they use structures, they’ll probably want one of the Chemistry-centric ELNs • If they aren’t look at what they have already • You might be able to leave them alone • Just give them something to keep the lawyers happy • This will hopefully be low-impact 34 simonc@amphora-research.com
  45. 45. “Deep Systems” • More than one group might find the same system acceptable - great! • You might want tools from Rescentris, IDBS, Klee etc. to support specific aspects of their work 35 simonc@amphora-research.com
  46. 46. “Deep Systems” • If you do a good job • Everyone gets their ideal work environment • You disrupt them as little as possible • You’ve left the door open for future improvements 36 simonc@amphora-research.com
  47. 47. Some questions you might ask... 37 simonc@amphora-research.com
  48. 48. What about Array? • They are essentially using CS as an integration platform • Unusually high investment in informatics and spend it wisely • They got to start from scratch • Environment dominated by Chemists • One front end works well (PatentSafe as an IP backend) 38 simonc@amphora-research.com
  49. 49. What about GxP • The needs of GxP & 21CFR11 mandate record keeping at the activity level • You can’t do this Broad Vs Deep model • I’m not sure there’s such a thing as a Generic ELN for regulated areas 39 simonc@amphora-research.com
  50. 50. What about Raw Data? • ELN isn’t the place for raw data • From a records aspect • From a practical aspect • ELN can provide metadata • But store it somewhere else (filesystems are nice!) • Records Retention matters...! 40 simonc@amphora-research.com
  51. 51. Isn’t this expensive? 41 simonc@amphora-research.com
  52. 52. Isn’t this expensive? • Not if you’ve already got perfectly acceptable solutions already 41 simonc@amphora-research.com
  53. 53. Isn’t this expensive? • Not if you’ve already got perfectly acceptable solutions already • The ROI on software you don’t have to buy is outstanding! 41 simonc@amphora-research.com
  54. 54. Are you on Drugs? • A large number of end-user companies have similar approaches • Most of the case studies are “Deep” systems • Ultimately, this is a much-simplified version of the CENSA architecture 42 simonc@amphora-research.com
  55. 55. Benefits of taking a Broad & Deep approach 43 simonc@amphora-research.com
  56. 56. You get to be a hero/heroine 44 simonc@amphora-research.com
  57. 57. Finding the money is easier 45 simonc@amphora-research.com
  58. 58. Training is easier/non- existent 46 simonc@amphora-research.com
  59. 59. You have a balanced relationship with your vendors 47 simonc@amphora-research.com
  60. 60. You can roll out in phases 48 simonc@amphora-research.com
  61. 61. Your lawyers won’t dictate what you do 49 simonc@amphora-research.com
  62. 62. ...Thank You... 50 simonc@amphora-research.com

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