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Let’s See your Printed Spectra Do This!- Part 2.

Back to the chemists with their ELN who continue to resort to their paper spectra.

Is it just an old habit?

No. I think it is something else. In fact I think there are two major (and completely understandable)
reasons why some chemist continue to resist the complete transition to
the electronic world:

  1. One of our users who I really enjoy speaking with when
    I get a chance once told me, "The only way you are going to get chemist
    to fully adopt these tools is when they can access and interact with
    the spectra JUST as fast as they can do it on paper." I think it’s a
    great point. For some chemists having to sit in front of a new piece (or old piece) of
    software to try and get your data out can be a daunting task. But I
    think significant strides have been made in this regard. With the
    transition to open access, NMR Spectroscopists have done a nice job (in
    conjunction with software vendors) to automate processing and create
    software macros to provide chemists with access to fully processed
    spectra. In addition, I think that the usability of NMR software for
    manual processing (See Shortcut Mode for example) has greatly improved over the years, but there is of course still work to do.
  2. I think the other reason is that perhaps the benefits associated
    with electronic handling of NMR data have historically been not
    convincing enough or educated clearly enough to the user. For example, I
    have beaten the multiplet report topic
    to death on here, but I am continually amazed by the number of chemists
    who have had our software for a long time that aren’t aware of this
    feature.

But perhaps easy access to data from your desk and formatted
multiplet reports is not enough for a chemist to let go of the paper
and embrace the electronic world. In fact, I am convinced it isn’t.
After all, an NMR spectrum is a means to an end. Sure, the delivery of
the results in a readable form in a convenient place is essential and
it has increased producitivity in open access environments, but the
bottom line is that there is a reason the chemist ran an NMR
experiment. In most cases that reason is to determine if their
compound’s proposed structure is consistent with their spectrum. Historically, NMR processing software has not provided any assistance in regards to data interpretation. 

I am
hoping that ACD/1D NMR Assistant addresses this challenge and finally
convinces the chemist to let go of their paper spectra for good and fully embrace the electronic world. To see how 1D NMR Assistant helps chemists
interpret and assign their 1H NMR spectra check out my previous vlog postings
(with video) here and here.