Some tools do fit the job

Derek Lowe of the medicinal chemistry blog In the Pipeline writes about his experience with electronic lab notebooks (ELN's): Let's Check This Blank Page, Here

I think that most of the large (and some of the small) drug companies have by now made the switch to electronic lab notebooks. It couldn't have come too soon for me. My merits as a scientist are up for debate, but my virtues as a record keeper are inarguable: I stink.

In reading the article, I was worried he was going to tell us that ELN's magically corrected all his bad habits - and he admits to several.  However, instead of correcting his bad habits the tool for him has changed how he does things.  Sure, he probably still writes the bare minimum in describing the experimental setup, but at least things like analytical data and chemical structure drawings can be more easily (for him) tied to the experiment for future reference.

[Now if we could just convince Derek or Corante to publish a full-text feed.]

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