The RSC and ChemSpider

As announced by the RSC Press Office and the ChemSpider blog, the Royal Society of Chemistry has acquired ChemSpider, the structure-based database.

Gosh. Reaction from the blogosphere has been positive and congratulatory (see the comments on Tony’s blog post and Peter Murray-Rust’s post).

Richard Kidd, head of the RSC’s Informatics department (formerly Production) has also blogged about it on the Chemistry World blog. He says “The ChemSpider service will continue to be free to access on the web” – answering the question that I was planning to ask in this post! Phew.

So that means that ChemSpider’s future – previously a tad shaky if Tony had fallen foul of his backyard snakes or his basement flooded – is pretty secure.

It’s going to be interesting to see how this develops: ChemSpider has been the new kid on the block (compared to the venerable Beilstein, Gmelin, Chemical Abstracts etc), but now it has the equally venerable RSC backing it up. I imagine adding the RSC’s extensive archive (dating from 1841, nearly 1.5 million pages) would add a hefty chunk of data.

[And not a single bad spider-related joke spun out of this post…]


Neil Withers (Associate Editor, Nature Chemistry)