Open Access Research article

The past, present and future of Scientific discourse

Henry S Rzepa

Author Affiliations

Department of Chemistry, Imperial College London, Exhibition Road Campus, London SW7 2AZ, UK

Journal of Cheminformatics 2011, 3:46  doi:10.1186/1758-2946-3-46

Published: 14 October 2011


The science journal is 346 years old in 2011, having evolved continuously but largely incrementally over that period. Its reinvention for an online presence has largely preserved its previously printed nature, in the sense that much of the increased functionality which is potentially offered by this new medium has yet to be exploited. In the present article an attempt is made to discuss two previously published papers, one in 1953 and the other in 2010, and to illustrate how additional functionality can be implemented in the form of accessible data sourced from quantum mechanical calculation and how subsequent discourse in the form of blogs may add to the process. In this sense, the reader of this article is invited to try for themselves whether these enhancements improve their scientific understanding, and whether such enhanced journals are good models for the future evolution of the genre.

Graphical abstract