I intend to add to these resources over time, concentrating on quality rather than quantity.
Here are a few to get started with.

Molecular Modelling

I have been playing with the 3-dimensional modelling of molecules in my spare time since 1994, when I started laboriously building a picture of g-linolenic acid (GLA) one atom at a time using a DOS-based, command-driven program called Polyray. There have been huge leaps forward in software development since then, and now it is possible to easily model molecules and add them to web pages, using a free browser plug-in called CHIME. This enables one to display interactive molecular models within a normal web page. The reader can move, rotate and zoom-in on the model in real time and, best of all, the size of the download file is only that of a small conventional picture - regardless of the final display size! CHIME works on both Netscape Navigator and Internet Explorer, and full details and a download are available from here.

Here are two sample pages I have designed which will show some of the capabilities of the CHIME plug-in:

Gamma-Linolenic Acid (GLA)For web sites where visitors may not be interested in downloading the plug-in, CHIME also provides an easy way to generate standard GIF or JPG images like the one on the left (a molecule of gamma-linolenic acid, or GLA).

If you have an interest in a particular chemical entity and would like to generate similar images, interactive displays or animations, which can then be incorporated into presentations or your own web site, feel free to email me - it will probably be less expensive than you think!

On-line Searching

I find the following four sites to be absolutely invaluable for literature searchesin case you haven't come across them:

Medline - for medical literature. Full search capabilities and abstracts for most papers.
Agricola - for agricultural literature. Full search capabilities and abstracts for most papers.
US Patent Office - full search and full text of US patents.
Free Patents Online - An alternative to the USPO which features free download of pdf copies.
The UK Patent Office - full search and full text of European and world patents.


Society for Economic Botany - An international society devoted to the past, present and future uses of plants. Also a great bunch of people! The main society web site is here.

Society of Chemical Industry - The SCI produces an absolutely excellent fortnightly magazine (Chemistry & Industry), similar to a 'New Scientist' for chemists, with strong coverage of pharmaceuticals and biotechnology. They also hold large numbers of meetings on a wide range of subjects around the UK. Well worth the subscription.


CharityCard For UK tax payers - If you like giving to charity, you won't need any guidance from me on where to send your money. However you may not have come across the CharityCard organisation which offers a tax-efficient yet flexible way to support charities. The way it works is simple. You pay money into your CharityCard Account. They reclaim the tax you've already paid on that money and add it to your account. This gives you up to 40% extra to donate to the charities of your choice. When you open your CharityCard Account you will receive a CharityCard and, if you like, a Charity 'chequebook' which you can use to make donations by phone, post or using their secure website. You can use your CharityCard Account to respond quickly to appeals, or you can set up standing orders for more regular giving, all the while ensuring that your chosen charity benefits from the tax relief. Click on the logo for more details.

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© Peter Lapinskas 1999-2012 Email Peter Lapinskas Last updated: 3 July 2012

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