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Samples and the lab notebook: Never the twain shall meet?
You probably think of managing samples as a separate activity from keeping your lab notebook. You — and others in the lab — probably keep track of, or try to keep track of freezer samples with a series of spreadsheets. And you document your experiments in your lab notebooks. But wait a minute: those samples you keep track of with spreadsheets are at the heart of the experiments you are conducting, so isn’t it a bit odd — not to mention inconvenient — that when you’re writing up an experiment in your lab notebook you need to refer back to those spreadsheets, which might be buried somewhere in the files on your computer, or worse, pasted on a wall next to the freezer?
Can you find the samples in the first place?
And what about the samples themselves? If your lab is like most others, there are probably stories about those samples dated 1990 that someone came across just the other day, or the aliquots you put on the shelf on Monday that mysteriously vanished by Thursday.
It’s things like that that drive some lab heads, in desperation, to try out expensive LIMS that usually turn out to be so complicated they just gather dust in the corner of the lab.
There must be a better way
It seems like a no brainer that managing samples in a lab notebook makes sense — here are some of the benefits it brings:
1. Fewer lost and mislabelled samples
2. Clearer visualization of relationships between samples and experiments
3. Reduction of experimental error
4. More effective search
5. Higher quality analysis
6. Most important, it saves you time
And now there is!
On May 11, Bitesize Bio is hosting the launch of a new system — it’s free for individual users — that lets you manage your samples and your experimental data in a simple electronic lab notebook. You can register for the launch here. And you can get a sneak preview here. See you on the 11th!