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Chemistry International

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Volume 41, Issue 3

Issues

A Century of Nomenclature for Chemists and Machines

Evan Hepler-Smith / Leah McEwen
Published Online: 2019-06-14 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ci-2019-0315

Abstract

The chemist’s tongue is sticking out and his eyes are upturned in concentration. Spirals circle above his head; the chemist is confused. His body twisted into a knot, he slowly backpedals, one finger pointing straight up, the other pointing backwards. To his side, a chart displays a maze, or perhaps a diagram of a complex logic circuit, illustrating an arcane web of decisions and procedures. A dot sits at rest within the diagram, marking the stymied chemist’s progress through this maze. It is annotated with a comment: “You are here. Why?”

References

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    Pieter Eduard Verkade, A History of the Nomenclature of Organic Chemistry, trans. S. G. Davies (Boston: Reidel, 1985).Google Scholar

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    Leah McEwen, “InChI’ng Forward: Community Engagement in IUPAC’s Digital Chemical Identifier,” Chemistry International 40, no. 1 (2018): 27–31, https://doi.org/10.1515/ci-2018-0109.Crossref

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    “Color Books,” International Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry, https://iupac.org/what-we-do/books/color-books/, accessed 14 Feb 2019.

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    Evan Hepler-Smith, “Systematic Flexibility and the History of the IUPAC Nomenclature of Organic Chemistry,” Chemistry International 37, no. 2 (2015): 10–14, https://doi.org/10.1515/ci-2015-0232.

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    J. W. Barrett, H. K. Livingston, and Byron Riegel, “Machine Documentation in the Chemical Field: Report to the Bureau of IUPAC,” 4 July 1969, Addenda to the Records of the Union of Pure and Applied Chemistry, Science History Institute, Philadelphia, PA, Box 91.Google Scholar

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About the article

Evan Hepler-Smith

Evan Hepler-Smith < > is Visiting Assistant Professor of History at Boston College. His book in progress, Compound Words: Chemists, Information, and the Synthetic World, explores how nomenclature systems and information management have shaped the history of modern chemistry.

Leah McEwen

Leah McEwen < > is chemistry librarian at Cornell University, USA. She is a member of the IUPAC Committee on Publications and Cheminformatics Data Standards (CPCDS), co-chair of the CPCDS Subcommittee on Cheminformatics Data Standards, and secretary of the InChI Subcommittee. ORCID.org/0000-0003-2968-1674


Published Online: 2019-06-14

Published in Print: 2019-07-01


Citation Information: Chemistry International, Volume 41, Issue 3, Pages 46–49, ISSN (Online) 1365-2192, ISSN (Print) 0193-6484, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/ci-2019-0315.

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©2019 IUPAC & De Gruyter. This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. For more information, please visit: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/4.0/.Get Permission

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