VMD: a cost-free molecular visualization program
VMD stands for Visual Molecular Dynamics and is the name of a program which enables you to study the 3-D molcular structure of complex molecules. It is freely downloadable, but the license conditions do not permit distribution on a DVD like Xplora Knoppix.
Karl Sarnow, Xplora portal manager, answers your questions about this programme below.
How is VMD different from other 3-D molecular viewing programs?
VMD is programmable. This enables teachers to prepare pre-programmed tours through a molecule. Peter Schellenberg from the Center of Physics, University of Minho, Portugal, has developed a set of scripts, which allow you to easily see the different representations of the molecule in order to understand its structure.
Who might be interested in it?
This programme is very interesting for both teachers and students of chemistry and biology.
Where can I get it?
As the licence conditions do not allow distribution on a DVD, Xplora cannot make it available from the DVD.
Users have to download the programme directly from the project page.
Can I give the programe to my students?
For the same reason that Xplora is not able to distribute it on a DVD, you cannot give it to your students. You need to ask your students to download their own versions and directly register for VMD.
Can I get a full description of the program before trying to use it?
Yes, of course. On the home page of the project, you can directly find a manual and some tutorials.