The first day of the #RealTimeChem event has gone by and here I am blogging about it in order to participate in the ensuing #RealTimeChemCarnival which is the blogging section, so to speak, of the aforementioned event. So, without further ado, this was my #RealTimeChem day:

Disclaimer: I’m not much of a Twitter man myself so I apologize in advanced for any dumb or stupid usage of it. I’m also new to Instagram and Vine, which I only downloaded on account of this event. Sorry for not taking snippets from the Twitter feed but I’m on Windows7 starter here and I don’t have such tools; I’m also not going to download some tool right now, sorry for that but if you know a better way, please do share it! I will be posting all week long so it might come in handy.

Joaquín Barroso
Editing sup. info. new paper on electronic interactions in rotaxane-like molecules with bio applications. Hope #RealTimeChem brings me luck!

We are almost done with this paper on drug delivery systems based on the architecture of calix[n]arenes. We’ve found some pretty interesting results about which features suit better certain drugs both in gas and solution phases. Most of my day had to do with editing the supporting information. Below, the picture that acompanied the previous Tweet.

Today's supporting info. +150 figures inserted into a Word file.
Today’s supporting info. +150 figures inserted into a Word file – I see rotaxanes!

Later on, along came a student whom, to be perfectly honest, I completely forgot about -my bad- but he was there and he was willing so off we went to work. Of course, being his first time, we had to start from scratch from the very basics of Gaussian’s use (and implicitly, the basics of the command line use in Linux). I’m not sure he wants his name to be posted here so he will remain in anonimity until otherwise stated. The associated Tweet read as follows:

Joaquin Barroso     ‏@joaquinbarroso 9h

1st Gaussian job 4 this new student #realtimechem

The new anonymous intern launching his very first Gaussian calculation - aww
The new anonymous intern launching his very first Gaussian calculation – aww

and then,

Joaquin Barroso     ‏@joaquinbarroso 8h

Training a new student in using Gaussian, Gaussview and Linux. Lot of work to be done but he looks eager to learn 🙂 #RealTimeChem

Being so much into #RealTimeChem worked as a serious motivator; the more you published the more you wanted to keep going! So all day long I had my head filled with things that I wanted to do, but I made a strong case about twitting only those things that I actually did and nothing in the lines of ‘thinking of …’ or ‘wishing I could…’ that sort of thing. I usually take little notes on google calendars about my day’s work as a means to keep track of my productivity, or sometimes, sadly, my lack thereof. This time Twitter was a loud witness of my activities which, hopefully, may be considered productive.

I teach a class on electronic structure each Tuesday, so I started preparing my class for tomorrow as a kind of break from editing that supporting information; the Twit read:

Joaquin Barroso     ‏@joaquinbarroso 7h

Must not forget to prepare class 4 tomorrow. #realtimechem a new productivity tool!

The book is "Quantum Chemistry" by Donald McQuarrie
The book is “Quantum Chemistry” by Donald McQuarrie

Joaquin Barroso     ‏@joaquinbarroso 4h

All day editing sup. info. has rendered me cross-eyed! Time 4 a break. Will reply work (chem) related email 🙂 #RealTimeChem

and so I did. I got to reply to a professor in the far away island of Mauritius! He just invited me to participate in a virtual conference on computational chemistry. What a shame! It’d been nice to fly half way accross the world and set foot in that land! If you don’t know where Mauritius is, find Madagascar in southern Africa and then take a right on the Indic Ocean. As per his request, here I promote his event with all of you and with #RealTimeChem:

Joaquin Barroso     ‏@joaquinbarroso 3h  Virtual conference on comp. chem. in Mauritius. Please try the link. #RealTimeChem

Then more e-mail

Joaquin Barroso     ‏@joaquinbarroso 3h

#RealTimeChem just accepted invitation 2 virtual conf.; accepted new intern by mail; now reviewing 2 applications for conference stipends

I didn’t finish reviewing these kid’s work but I think they might get their plane tickets from the local council for science and technology.

As I wrote earlier, I’m not a Twitter man so I get easily overwelmed by all the information generated within. I wanted to go home but before I got to read some Tweets and I was astonished by the enormous ammount of messages in the lines of ‘submitted a grant, now when can I do the corresponding research?‘; ‘grading! what a torture!’ and some others that indicated people was doing administrative work when they really wanted to get their hands dirty in the lab. This was a surprise to me because I imagined that most Twitter users and therfore, #RealTimeChem participants would be young students who are the ones who actually are up to their necks in chemistry! of course I Tweeted about my little observation in two messages.


Joaquin Barroso     ‏@joaquinbarroso 2h

So interesting 2 notice #RealTimeChem deals more with research administration than wth research! I thought it’d be the other way around!

Joaquin Barroso     ‏@joaquinbarroso 2h

@RealTimeChem Is it measureable how much #RealTimeChem is chem. research & how much is adminstration/paperwork/grading? Might b interesting!


Wow! Now that I’m writting about it I’m once again tired by it. It’s 1 AM here in Toluca (Mexico) and there is a lot of chemistry -or science administration, maybe, to do tomorrow and if I don’t get my beauty sleep then it wont feel happening in RealTime!