The Informatics Division of Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc. recently introduced the KnowItAll U system

KnowItAll U system 


Reviewed by Malcolm J D’Souza, Wesley College, US

The Informatics Division of Bio-Rad Laboratories, Inc. recently introduced the KnowItAll U system, an outcome of Bio-Rad’s collaboration with various top-tier university libraries. We found that this system could serve as a comprehensive spectroscopy resource for academic institutions. 

KnowItAll U offers ’campus-wide’ access to a collection of more than 1.3 million reference spectral data. The analytical techniques cover IR, NMR, MS, Raman, UV-Vis, and near IR. This spectral library is accessible through a simple browser interface called KnowItAll AnyWare. With it, a user can search information by full spectrum, spectral peaks or region, substructure or exact structure, or other properties such as name, molecular weight, CAS registry number, boiling point, etc, or a combination of these. The user interface is intuitive, user-friendly, and resembles the familiar Google search page. The help page is very informative, showing examples of various query entries. The speed of searching is surprisingly fast, taking into account that the search-engine has to evaluate more than 1.3 million records. The return information of a record is coherently presented. 

In addition, KnowItAll U offers chemistry software that can be downloaded by all members of the campus community. This tool includes the ability to draw chemical structures, create records in a central database, sketch laboratory set-ups, process spectra, search data, organise data, and perform chemometrics analysis. 

The KnowItAll U package also contains the SpectraBase Community Database, a repository for researchers to share data of multiple analytical techniques. The records in this repository are peer reviewed by members of the KnowItAll U community across all originations. 

Overall, KnowItAll U offers the academic community a very unique proposition. It can be utilised within the teaching curriculum, academic research in chemistry and biology, and in a library setting. 

More information can be found on website.