Creating an HPLC/SPE Database Resource to Serve Applications Documents as Well as Reference Citations via the Internet

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Patrick D. McDonald;Carla J Clayton;Maureen Allegrezza;Kevin G Landry;Jeffrey M. O''Halloran;Kenneth McGovern
HPLC''99, Granada, Spain, May 31, 1999
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ABSTRACT: When faced with developing a new separation or devising a sample preparation protocol, chemists and chromatographers are trained to turn first to the literature to see what might have been done in the past. Even an older reference to a similar separation problem might establish the feasibility of the desired separation goal and/or a starting point for method development. Or, one might discover that the problem has already been solved and that the necessary elements of the separation system are near at hand. In any case, valuable time and resources are saved by the knowledge gained. For twenty years, we have been collecting references to the applications of HPLC columns, chemistries, instruments and SPE devices. About 13 years ago we began to enter these references into an internal database for electronic searching and retrieval. Recently, we migrated the data to an architecture based on Lotus Notes/Domino servers. Now our database, containing more than 13,000 citations, can be accessed and searched via a web-browser on the Internet. Because we first painstakingly review the literature ourselves, we select references for inclusion in our database based on experimental details which may not be in abstracts or keyword lists. Such references would therefore not turn up in searches of various on-line databases (e.g., Chemical or Analytical Abstracts). Also, we may include references to documents from sources not available to most libraries or commercial databases. Recently, we have begun to use the portable document format (PDF) to create actual electronic versions of printed documents and developed an innovative way to access them anytime, day or night, from anywhere in the world. Rather than simply creating an HTML archive of links to these PDF files on a web page, we have linked them directly to records in our database. Thus, when an appropriate record turns up in a list of search results, by clicking on an icon, the actual document cited in that record may be viewed immediately, as may one or more related documents. This saves even more valuable time and effort -- no trips to the library or reprint requests are needed! If copyright permission has been secured, but a PDF file is not available, we have created an e-mail form, immediately available on-line, to request a paper copy of a document. Examples of the content and utility of this innovative database will be reviewed.

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