FirstGlance in Jmol was inspired by FirstGlance in Chime,
written by Eric Martz in 1998 in collaboration with
and with the support of
and the Protein Data Bank.
FirstGlance in Chime was deployed in 1998 at the Brookhaven Protein
Data Bank, and beginning the following year, at the RCSB Protein Data Bank.
It remained available at the latter through 2005.
is a browser plugin derived from
has had a large impact on education, communication, and research in the
biochemical community, as evidenced by the hundreds of tools and tutorials
that utilize it (indexed at
MDL Chime is free, but
its proprietary source code has been closely guarded by
Chime first became available in late
1996. MDL stopped serious development of Chime by late 1998.
Despite its considerable power, the limitations of Chime (including
its unavailability for Mac OSX or linux) and the freeze in its development
have been frustrating to its user community. An open-source replacement
was needed, and this need was met by
FirstGlance in Jmol
has been kept simple by intention, partly to enable it to work
on the widest possible range of browsers and platforms.
no windows except those specifically requested when users click on links,
and hence is compatible with pop-up blocking.
FirstGlance (through version 0.97) was available in a version
that used frames, and a version that didn't. You could control which
version you use with the Advanced Options at the main page, or
with the hyperlink to FirstGlance.
Since nobody preferred the version with frames, and it was considerable
to maintain the frames capability, the option to use frames was discontinued in version 0.98. Nevertheless,
the following information may be of interest:
Both versions work in the same
wide range of browsers and platforms.
- No frames (default): Maintenance is simpler. The browser Back
button is appropriately inactive. The help cannot be scrolled
with the mouse wheel in Gecko browsers (e.g. Firefox). When changing help
text, the scrolling position is unchanged, so the top of the new help
may not be visible.
- Frames (only available through version 0.97):
The help frame can be scrolled with the mouse
wheel in Gecko browsers, but frames complicate maintenance, and
the browser's Back button retraces the history of views.
A complete list of
changes between versions
The problem affecting scrolling of text with the mouse wheel in Firefox
was fixed in later versions of Firefox.
Technical information for software developers is available
in several documents listed at the end of
All About FirstGlance in Jmol.