November 15, 2011 (Vol. 31, No. 20)
Strong Points: Available for all platforms, downloadable user guideq
Weak Points: None
I guess you could call Open Babel multilingual, as it is “designed to speak the many languages of chemical data.” That’s all fine and well, but now on to the real question—what exactly does that mean? It means that Open Babel provides a collection of tools to analyze, interconvert, modify, and search chemical files. Never again will file X be incompatible with file Y (as long as they are contained within the set of 110 chemical file formats supported by Open Babel). In addition to the prepackaged programs, the other major facet of Open Babel is a toolkit for programmers to develop their own chemistry software. This all-in-one chemistry Swiss army knife is freely downloadable, and is available for Windows, Linux, and Macintosh.