November 1, 2014 (Vol. 34, No. 19)
Strong Points: Different sketcher modes, good tutorials
Weak Points: Unclear how to change sketcher mode once selected
With the power of desktop chemical drawing software, the Reaction101 app allows users to easily draw, edit, and save publication-quality chemical structures and reactions from their mobile devices. Users can choose from three sketcher modes when they first download the app, which vary in the degree of gesture-based functionality (either more closely resembling the traditional desktop drawing apps or optimized for mobile devices) and steepness of the learning curve. Within the app, users can view demos, link to an online help site, and also get hints by tapping on the light bulb icon in the top right corner. The app comes with a number of starting templates, as well as a freely accessible public collection of common chemical reactions that have already been drawn out. For their own drawings, users can easily edit and adjust the stoichiometry of their reactions, as well as export the final products via email or the clipboard.