Amphora’s new Corporate blog

We’ve just launched a new blog for Amphora as a company. This site (ELNBlog) will remain as my personal thinking space about ELN issues and anything work-related that interests me, and the corporate blog will become our general public voice.

There’s some seriously interesting times ahead for all of us and being able to have a separate corporate voice will hopefully make it easier for me to engage thoughtfully without having to consider the implications of what I write from a company branding perspective.

PatentSafe Personal Edition

We’ve just released a new edition of our flagship PatentSafe product, aimed at individuals, small groups etc.

You can read the detail on PatentSafe Personal Edition in the Press Release but some background might be of interest and this blog is the place for it!

I have to admit that we aren’t that clever – our product planning process is nothing more than listening to what’s going on, talking to people, and spotting places where we can meet a need.

There’s been a big increase recently in very small R&D companies (in all sorts of industries). One or two scientists working on a specific area, often funded from their own pockets or friends & family – and maybe the a small grant. Interestingly, they are more than likely to be working from more than one location – incubators, universities, shared lab space, garages, etc. Some or all of their researchers might be part time, too.

I don’t know why we’re seeing this increase – it might be because the Internet has suddenly made this business model viable, and of course the inexorable advance of technology has reduced the barriers to entry for whole sectors of scientific endeavor. I suspect there’s also a lot of people leaving larger companies and taking the opportunity to work on ideas they’ve always wanted to explore.

This is all really interesting – this is the exciting part of innovation. We like working with these people, there’s a lot of passion and energy there and it’s a lot of fun.

Interestingly, these very small companies have problems you’d associate with large-scale enterprises. They need decent records of their inventions (because their IP is their only asset, generally). They also need effective ways of working with closely with remote colleagues (because they seldom have a central work area).

Of course, they have small-company constraints – notably, they don’t have much IT infrastructure, and of course if you’re funding things yourself, money really really really matters.

The Paper Lab Notebook really does not work at all well for these customers – but until now they’ve never had an option.

PatentSafe Personal Edition is a full version of PatentSafe, which is hosted on one of Amphora’s servers in a secure virtual environment (we’ve got servers in a number of locations around the world, we use the one “Closest” to the customer). Amphora handle administration, acts as the Custodian, and generally makes everything tick.

So the customer gets an Enterprise-class ELN solution with no real hassle. Just what they need.

We’re fortunate that PatentSafe works well over The Internet. Generally there’s no noticeable difference for people using it over The Internet compared to using it locally.

It really is that simple – call us up, pay a small amount by credit card, and you’ll have your server. Of course, as the customer grows they can move to the PatentSafe Starter Pack, and then a full PatentSafe install.

Lots of fun… if you’re interested drop us a line at

By the way, you can get a PDF of the press release here – Personal Edition Press Release.pdf