Research tools for science

I would provide links and brief reviews to various research tools ranging from writing to data analysis.


  1. Manuscripts app
    As the name suggests, this is a writing tool and helps you write in a simplified way and would also keep you focused. This app was launched recently, and the developers are working day and night to improve the app. You can include figures and equations, divide your manuscript into different sections (Introduction, Materials, and Methods) and much more. You have templates from various journals, and they are adding templates for the blog post, dissertations, and grant applications as well. The student license is 20$, and the unlimited license is 40$ although there is no difference between the two. You can try it for free as well. To check out more features, have a look at
  2. Papers citation and reference manager: MERGING WITH READCUBE SOON
    Papers app has become my new citation manager. I was a big fan of Endnote, but Papers has a different approach which I liked. The only drawback I would like to mention is you have to download a paper into your library to cite it, unlike Endnote where you could directly search the Papers online and cite it without having to download it. This application can run on the Iphone and Ipad, and sync between all your devices. There are three different subscription option – Monthly, Annual or a standard license and with a student discount, a standard license would cost about 34€ while the Iphone and Ipad Papers application are free. You can find more information here:
  3. Graphpad
    Graphpad is my favorite statistical analysis tool. The software can do all kind of statistical analysis and make nice and beautiful graphs and with every update, it becomes smarter. You can do all the statistical analysis you want from one-way or two-way ANOVA to student t-test. With the addition of the magic graph, wherein you can copy the color coding, axis and axis interval from a previous figure. The license for GraphPad are quite expensive at around 100$, but I think its worth the money. Graphpad 7 brings a lot of helpful features. The three top features that I like is the ability to do 3-way ANOVA, multiple t-tests, and heat maps.
    You can find more information here:
  4. REST or Relative Expression Software
    This application was developed by Prof. Pfaffl, who is also credited with the Pfafll equation for calculating gene expression changes in qPCR. You have to enter raw Cq values in both the control and treated group and click on analysis and voila you will see your gene expression changes and it also tells you if the genes are up- or down-regulated and give some statistics. What more, it also draws graphs for you for the quick estimation. The latest REST software is REST-2009, but the only drawback is it is supported by Windows 32 bits. It works with all the Windows version including Windows 10 but only with 32-bit windows. More information can be found here: and can be downloaded from
  5. Wunderlist
    Wunderlist is a daily to-do list application which helps in keeping you organized. The beautiful design and simple to use features have made it my top choice as a to-do app. If you have a Telekom network (Germany), then you can get a one-year Pro version for free. I would recommend this app as it can help you organize your scientific and personal life.
  6. Grammarly
    As the name suggests, Grammarly helps you identify grammatical errors in your text. It is more advanced than the standard word processing software and has a lot of useful features. You can also install the Grammarly plugin for the web browser which can detect grammatical errors while you type. It can also detect plagiarism in the text as it compares your version with a lot of other websites and research papers to find similarity. There are three different kind of subscription to Grammarly – Annual, Quarterly, and Monthly. If you invite a friend, then you can use the app’s Pro version free for one week.
  7. Simple Antnotes
    Simple Antnotes the answer to advanced sticky notes. You can click on the new note, type your note and after 5 seconds or a custom defined time (max 60 seconds) it becomes invisible until you click on the app menu bar to view all of it. You have a choice of different color for the notes and transparency bar. I find it useful to take quick notes that come across my mind. It’s freely available on the Mac App store.
  8. Simple Notes
    A great note taking app which I replaced with the Apple Note app. Simple design and easy to use and moreover you can add tags to your note. Available across all Apple devices so you can sync between all your devices.
  9. PlagScan
    PlagScan is a very good plagiarism software. While I was writing my PhD thesis, I used this software to detect plagiarism. There are a lot of freeware available which only scans for web articles but doesn’t scan for journal articles. However, this software scans both of them (including PubMed) and highlights the sentences you have copied. You can use it for free just for once to check about 5000 words. After that you have to purchase credits to use it. But trust me, it’s worth the money. Currently, for 5000 words, it costs 5€ and for 20,000 words, it costs 10€. More informaton can be found on their pages.
  10. Paperpile
    It is currently available as a plugin and you can use it for free for 1 month with Google Docs. After a month, you can purchase it for 2.99$/month (35$ billed annually). You can directly click on a paper to add it to your library from PubMed, Google Scholar, or Google. You can create your own library. Managing your papers is much easier with Paperpile.
  11. BenchSci
    This is a platform to search for antibodies. As a scientist, I have been using antibodies for most of my experiments. Sometimes they work, sometimes they don’t, and as you might know they are expensive too. On BenchSci, you can search for your antibody of interest according to either already published articles or suppliers before deciding which antibody would be perfect for your experiment. They have validated 1,257,999 antibodies. You just need to create an account, and the best part is it’s “FREE”
  12. Readcube
    Lately, I have started using Readcube, a reference manger app. As mentioned above, readcube and papers app are teaming up, and for good. You can read more about it here. If you have signed up for the beta feature, then you will be receiving an email soon to try out the beta feature. Readcube provides a simple interface to use with many additional features. The best features are the tagging and cloud sync. I can sync my library across multiple computers. There is also an inbuilt google scholar and Pubmed, and lastly, you can create collection of your papers.