The fine line between colleagues and friends

Are some of your colleagues your friends as well ? Or not ? I always find it very delicat to decide and draw a line there (not that it’s anything conscious).
Scientists generally spend a lot of times together because they work long hours, share regular drinks on friday evening, have days-out or extra-lab activities. So it’s inevitable that you get closer than “regular” colleagues. But that does not mean there is friendship there, right ? (Being Facebook friends does not count)
At the end, only time will tell you for sure. From experience, I can tell that I kept in touch with only a handful of people I met in labs. These are the ones you were and still are friends with.


PS: And this is what you call a lab party. Beer and wine on ice, in a box that normally contains dirty glassware. Isn’t that the nerdiest ?

The iLab generation – Invitrogen Apps

No surprise for those who know me IRL, surprise for the others: I’m an Apple geek. One day I got an iPod nano, and a few years later, I am hooked to iPhones, iPad, iClouds, etc …

One of the things I secretly dream about is making use of all of these in the lab. Unfortunately, I am in a relatively PC-oriented, old-fashioned, and not-growing-money-on-trees-but-can’t-really-complain  kind of lab. Nevertheless, I try to make use of my ‘i’ things here and there … and it turns out to be really useful.

One of the first things you find on the App Store in the “lab science” section is the suite created by Invitrogen (or should I say Life Technologies ?).

Prize for the best app goes to the “cloning bench” ! This is your friend if you do molecular cloning. It will calculate a lot of things, find the best buffers for enzymes, etc … 


Prize for the most disturbing and “WTF” app goes to the “Gathering Light”. Here is the description from the website : “Long hours in the lab can leave even the most seasoned researcher flat on the bench. Refresh yourself with Gathering Light, a new Gibco® game and mobile app.”   Right ? Right ? Worst part is that this game comes with the most annoying and stressful background music on earth, so don’t even bother downloading this one.

So, I’m not doing promotion for Invitrogen here, but some people might not know these apps exist, and some of them are actually quite nice. There is also one for making conversions (yeah, yeah, the young generation is lazy), a guide for cell imaging, staining, fluorescence, etc …

iLIKE, you like ?