Microsoft Research has made available for download an "add-in" that can save chemical engineers time while writing. Assigned to the Outercurve Foundation as an open-source project, the Chemistry Add-in for Microsoft Word will do the following:
allow for easy insertion and modification of chemical-related info such as formulas, labels, and 2-D depictions, within Microsoft Word
provides the ability to store and expose chemical information in a semantically rich manner
allow for the creation of inline “chemical zones,” the rendering of print-ready visual depictions of chemical structures
The Add-In uses CML (Chemical Mark-up Language), a version of XML that not only enables chemical writing in Microsoft Word 2007 and 2010 but also includes the data behind the writing. According to Microsoft Research:
The Chemistry Add-in and CML help make chemistry documents open, readable, and easily accessible to humans as well as other technologies. The Chemistry Add-in supports publishing and data-mining scenarios for authors, readers, publishers, and others throughout the chemical information community.
Watch a video about the Microsoft Word Chemical Add-In:
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Thanks to innovative business models, the off-grid solar market from sub-Saharan Africa to India has not only been growing, it's picking up serious momentum. But many of the first organizations to bring solar to the poor were nonprofits, which have had a hard time raising enough capital to satisfy the huge demand. That's why the California-based d.light, a for-profit social enterprise, is so important.
The off-grid solar lighting specialist has lined up a stellar group of investors for an $11 million investment round, which brings d.light's total to $40 million. This milestone sends a message about the ability of companies in this part of the world to successfully sell products that improve the lives of the poor. (The video is a case history.)
After serious due diligence, investors saw that d.light already made more than 500,000 solar lights a month, thanks to its first big customer: the French oil and gas company Total, which sells d.light's product line throughout Africa as part of its “Access to Energy Program.”
With growth rates similar to the early days of mobile phone expansion, d.light serves over 40 countries through over 10,000 retail outlets, and has sold 6 million solar power products. So as more companies raise the money they need, the world will begin to move meaningfully toward ending energy poverty.
Check out the video in the panel at right.
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