Please, help! - Vector NT software

John Brunstein brunstei at UNIXG.UBC.CA
Sat Feb 18 14:28:48 EST 1995

	Vector NTI is made by InforMax, Inc. , Dept. of Biological 
Software, Box 2926, Gaithersburg MD 20886.  The demo version is available 
by anonymous FTP as vntdemo, I believe (but I don't remember for sure) 
from fly.bio.indiana.edu.  The company can also be reached by phone at 
(301) 216-0586, fax at (301) 216-0087 (and in deference to yesterday's 
flame from a netter in Italy, sorry but I don't know the country code for 
the US off the top of my head, but at least in this part of the world 
phone books contain a listing of country codes!).  The company can also 
be reached by e-mail at 76620.2735 at compuserve.com and are willing to send 
the demo on 2 disks along with ordering information.  The listed price is 
$995 US for one copy with discounts for additional copies.  
	As to the lack of a manual, the demo has a 49 page Write document 
which is a pretty extensive guided tutorial; without this I found the 
interface to be massively counterintuitive.  Once you get the hang of it 
it didn't seem soo bad, however.
	For what it's worth, I tried the demo on an 8Mb 486SL-25 laptop and 
found it to work well, although the design feature was quite slow (8 
minutes to put a gene from pUC into pBR322), and for some reason the 
program can't be put into the background to let you do important things 
like Minesweeper while you wait.  All of the other features worked quite 
quickly and if one were doing a lot of convoluted cloning steps I think 
the program would be useful for keeping track of the constructs' 
relationships to each other (usually a real bugger to go figure out when 
it's time to write something up, at least for me!).  
	The demo takes up 12 Mb of disk space and upon installation 
doesn't seem to make any drastic and irreversible changes to the .ini 
files so it should be relatively simple to uninstall.  I believe the 
working version only takes up 5 Mb.
	The usual disclaimers apply: I have no relationship with the 
company etc., I just have a copy of the demo and might even buy the real 
version if I ever have $1200 Cdn. that I don't know what else to do with 
from a grad student's salary.(:->)
	UNRELATED P.S.  Don't buy Zenith laptops!  When they die right 
out of the box the company really screws you around on warrantee service!

On Fri, 17 Feb 1995, Patrick O'Neil wrote:

> On Tue, 24 Jan 1995, Dima Klenchin wrote:
> > Could someone provide any information about DNA analysis program
> > called "Vector NT"? (Determines optimal subcloning strategy and draws maps). 
> > It was highly recommended and I will probably buy it. I need to know vendor, 
> > if possible, phone/email, how much is it, and if it is possible to download it 
> > from anywhere to make sure that's what I need. 
> I have the demo disk for this program.  It sure looks pretty but in
> playing around with it, it seemed rather complicated to operate...and
> no instruction booklet to go with the demo.  
> I recently moved and have temporarily misplaced the disk so I cannot check
> the manufacturer right now.  When I find it I will let you know.  I recall
> a butterfly on the label so it may be a New England Biolabs product. 

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