Despite the current technology advancement, paper notebooks are still in use and relevant. Paper production is still a booming business where countries like Japan, the U.S, and China lead in the world’s paper production, accounting for more than 50 percent of the global output. In 2016, the world’s paper and cardboard production capacity was 411 million metric tons.
You may ask why lab notebooks are still the best choice for both science students and professionals. Most lab notebooks give significant benefits that a word document from your computer cannot offer.
One of the primary benefits of a lab notebook is that you can take it anywhere and use it at any given time. Notebooks can be used while performing different vital tasks in a laboratory environment.
What are the benefits of a good laboratory notebook?
It Helps You in Keeping Track Of Your Lab Partner
In most cases, complicated lab experiments require a significant group of people. This means that you may not be directly responsible for various portions of the research. It, however, becomes easier for every partner during the entire exercise once responsibilities are shared. However, to avoid mistakes from weak members, a laboratory notebook helps in keeping records and double-checking each member’s work. You can use such documents for reviews.
It Helps You Keep Truck of your Work
A critical benefit of a well-organized and maintained laboratory notebook is that it gives you a record of your experiment’s progress. How is this helpful? Because it gives you easy to access future ideas at any given time.
Most laboratory experiments are done in steps. Therefore, careful recording of findings you have discovered in each level, makes it easy for you to pick up from where you left from after some time. You will also have an easy time to double-check your work before you proceed to the next equally important step.
It Helps You Record your Ideas
At times, it can be a challenge to work in a laboratory, and most probably you won’t keep all ideas in your head. It is crucial to keep records and track of all the work you have done. However, it is equally vital to record ideas of the tasks ahead of you. A lab notebook helps you in keeping a detailed list of your future ideas and plans that you need to explore.
Helps in Future Publications
Any publication requires data, and evidence to act as a backup. A well-kept laboratory notebook is essential if you intend to publish your research and experiment results. In the absence of a well-documented analysis, it will be hard for you to prove and have merit to anything you might argue. However, keeping a lab notebook helps you to have precise data and research records to support your claims.
Acts as a Reference to Others
The other significant advantage of a laboratory notebook is that other people can use it. They can be your fellow lab workmates or team members with whom you might be collaborating. A well-documented lab notebook hastens the work. This is because your colleagues will have little clarifications to ask as far as the experiment is concerned since all the details and notes are readily available.
No Worry about Losing your Data
Though computers are celebrated for their efficiency and speed, at times, they can be prone to damages or security breach. It is easy to lose your data in your computer in case an unexpected power surge occurs unless you have backed up your data on a drive.
With a laboratory notebook, you don’t have to worry about such issues as long as you keep it in a safe place and avoid losing it.
As a laboratory person, always invest in a lab notebook that you can depend on and one that is not easy to damage. As a student, a lab technician, or any other professional, a notebook will get your work done efficiently irrespective of your career level.