Physical Chemistry

LabInform: A Modular Laboratory Information System Built From Open Source Components



A framework for reproducible data analysis is only half the battle if it comes to reproducible research. Additional essential requirements are a way to safely store both, raw data and metadata and a method to uniquely refer to a dataset or any piece of information. Such unique identifier is fully independent of the actual place the information referred to is stored and does not change over time. Additionally, numeric IDs for samples and alike come in quite handy. A knowledge base and an electronic lab notebook, both based on wiki software and thus easily accessible requiring only a web browser and connection to the intranet, complete the system. Overarching design rules are simplicity, robustness and sustainability, focussing on small-scale deployment of the system retaining compatibility with future developments and community efforts. Key aspects in setting up the system are its use of well-proven open-source tools combined with maximal modularity, resulting in a low entry threshold and allowing to implement and develop it along the way of focussing on actual research.


Thumbnail image of LabInform-draft.pdf

Supplementary weblinks

The Open-Source Laboratory Information System
(German) demo instance of the wiki components of LabInform (electronic lab notebook, ELN, knowledge base)