Electronic Lab Notebooks, also known as an ELN, is an online notebook which you can carry around everywhere, and use it to access all your data, no matter how much you’ve stored there.
This product takes regular note taking to another level for a number of reasons, and all of its features aim to make research reproducibility—one of the most important ways of advancing science easier and quicker.
If you’re not sure about whether purchasing an ELN is the right choice for you, or you simply want to know how it’s going to help you further your research, then keep reading because we’re taking a look at 4 solid reasons why an Electronic Lab Notebook is going to change the way you’ve looked at research. Let’s get started!
1. Collaboration Made Easy
An ELN gives teams the ability to collaborate and share their findings throughout the research process. You might think that there are a million ways to do so—all you have to do is send your findings via email to all your teammates and you’re done. However, collaborating with an ELN is a lot easier than that.
After all, sharing files manually via links and emails is not really the most efficient way to communicate, especially when you’re working with numerous other individuals on a project—imagine the number of files that are sent back and forth, and the data that’s prone to get buried or go missing in the process!
Which is why ELNs make collaboration easy by providing users with a centralized data management system. This not only makes the process less messy, but also ensures that everyone always has access to an updated version of the study.
However, you’ll need to make sure that the ELN you purchase is powered by the cloud—for example, Colabra.app is an ELN which comes with the full-flexibility of the cloud, where anyone, from any part of the world can access the latest research documents as and when they’re updated by the owner.
2. Give Access to Anyone
Research reproducibility is used to test and prove existing scientific results, to ensure that the results gained by different researchers coincide with the results gained by the original study—this is one of the methods in which you can test the results and the documentation of a study.
In this way, the research is able to be checked by other researchers who have access to the documentation of the study—this includes the data, analysis, codes, and everything that was used in the primary research.
This documentation can be given to any researcher in the world with the help of electronic notebooks—it’s as easy as sending an email, except that there’s no way your files can ever get lost or misplaced, and everyone always has access to the latest documentation, no matter how many time you update it or make changes to it.
3. Note Taking is Easier
Long back, scientific documentation consisted of pages and pages of handwritten notes, which very often was prone to have small errors in them, not to mention the illegible notes that often took a long time to decipher by anyone trying to reproduce the research.
However, by using an ELN, scientists will no longer have to worry about this and can pass on clean and nearly perfect notes to anyone who needs them in the future. Not to mention that it reduces the amount of paper used, making it easier to carry around and also easier on the planet.
4. Publication Becomes Easier
Imagine you just got down with years of research and now you have to get started on typing everything down from scratch—what a long nightmare that’s going to be! Instead, using an ELN which has integrations with software such as MS Word and Google Docs will help you have your research almost ready for publication soon after you’re done with it—making it a great way to save time and resources.