Data Analysis and Informatics
The Lab of the Future: Automation in the Digital Age
Scientists working today must navigate very large and complex datasets and work within regulatory boundaries that are tighter than ever. In order to meet the needs of modern scientists, lab documentation and management systems have had to evolve from simple pen and paper to flexible, integrated digital tools.
We are at an era in which technology is at our fingertips, and having new lab automation tools like a voice powered AI digital lab assistant that allows integration of multiple functionalities within a laboratory annotation system greatly simplifies research workflows.
Ernesto Diaz-Flores is an Assistant Adjunct Professor at UCSF who works with his team of scientists in the lab to study novel therapeutic targets for high-risk subtypes of childhood leukemia. New technologies such as voice powered AI digital assistants enable scientists at the UCSF lab to take voice notes, upload photos of experiments in real time, set up several reminders throughout the day and even dictate what reagents they need in their shopping list, and have it all immediately added to their e-lab notebooks. There’s also been less human error, scientists can capture and access more information at the point of experimentation hands free. When eyes and hands are occupied on the experiment, their voice can make the observations and capture the information in real time with digital lab assistants.
As mobile, voice and AI technology evolves, there are now new options for scientists that seamlessly integrates with lab equipment and other data sources. The developments in mobile, voice and AI/machine learning technology are playing an important role in helping scientists bring their innovations and discoveries to market, improve efficiencies in the lab and make their work more reproducible.