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1) The Main Window
2) Chemical Reactions
4) Other Things
5) Some Molecules To Download
The Main Window
The main window has three components - the large white area, which is where atoms and molecules currently "in use" are shown; the atom "palette" on the right-hand side, where new atoms can be selected and dragged directly into the central area (directly onto molecules, if you want it to join that molecule specifically); and the menu bar. The scene shown in the screenshot above is typical: four CH4 molecules, with the bottom-left one selected. A red rectangle denotes selection. Upon pressing delete, or selecting delete from one of the menus, this molecule will be deleted. Right-clicking will bring up a menu of options specific to the selected molecule. This menu is duplicated in the main Edit/Molecule menu.
The atoms you create in Dan! 94, either by dragging them from the palette (which have "default" properties, such as having their natural number of electrons), or by the Edit/Create Atoms menu item (where the properties of the new atom can be changed) react automatically. The program allows the chemicals in the system to react as they do (or might) in reality (hopefully, if there aren't any bugs). This reduces the creation of some molecules to simply dragging their constituents into the system. Other molecules may require more energy to react, or require ions. In this case, use the Edit/Create Atoms menu option, or use the Edit/Molecule/Apply Energy after dragging them into the system. Bear in mind that any atom in the program can react with any other, and so molecules may be broken down by adding new atoms. To avoid this, the menu option File/New Program Instance launches another copy of the program to store molecules seperately. Copy and paste are provided to move between the instances. The messages window, accessed by View/Messages shows the details of reactions as they occur.
Dan! 94 supports loading and saving of files using its native format. This functionality is available via File/Open and File/Save as you might expect. There is also the facility to import/export from/to a variety of formats. Graphics (pictures of the system in its current state) can be exported as a bitmap (raster graphic), SVG (web vector graphic), VRML (web 3D model) and X3D (web 3D model). The "data", that is, some description of the current state of the system, can be exported to CML, HyperChem (very experimental) and Sybyl (also experimental). Finally, importing "data" is supported for CML.
Now, the odds and ends. The messages window will show you a guess at the English name of molecules in the system. This feature is incomplete (though can be humorous at times). The Edit/Molecule/Create By Formula is basically a shorthand method of dragging atoms from the palette. It does not ensure that the molecule you have typed is created, and does not support parentheses (greatly reducing the molecules you can create). The notes window (Edit/Notes) is simply a place to write the name of the molecule (or anything else), to be stored with the molecule(s) when saved. Finally, the library window allows you to build up a collection of molecules. You can add any molecule to the library with Edit/Molecule/Add To Library, and molecules in the library can be dragged back into the system any number of times in the same way single atoms are created. Molecules can be removed from the library by pressing delete when selected.
Some Molecules To Download
|Copyright D. Sykes|