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EigenU Poster Winners

Jun 22, 2017

Hello EigenFriends and EigenFans,

Two months ago we hosted the 12th Annual EigenU at the Washington Athletic Club in Seattle, WA. We had over 50 people join us through six days of hands-on chemometric courses, and once again had an awesome poster session where users got to display their use of PLS_Toolbox and EVRI methods in their recent research. We named two winners to take home the poster prizes from the session: Dr. Gordon G. Allison of Aberystwyth University, and Dr. Amanda Lines of PNNL. Information about their posters are attached below; congrats to you both!

21866_IBERS Seattle Conference Poster_FINAL1

Says Allison, “The Eigenvector PLS toolbox, and later the MIA toolbox, has been a staple of my data analysis platform for over 10 years. If it wasn’t the best I would have moved on. The software integrates seamlessly into Matlab and I move between command line and gui at will. The flexibility and variety of algorithms in the PLS toolbox never ceases to impress me, and Eigenvector seem to never run out of ideas of how the toolbox can be refined and expanded… I heartedly recommend that PLS toolbox users come along to the annual Eigen University in Seattle, to hone their skills in basic to advanced chemomentrics. I’ve been to 3 and always learn something new and valuable. The atmosphere is vibrant, fun, friendly and informal, the quality of instruction excellent, and the location couldn’t be better.”

Dr. Amanda Lines of PNNL also took home a poster prize regarding her work on “Using multivariate analysis to quantify and identify speciation of plutonium”. The abstract is below:

Amanda M. Lines1, Susan R. Adami1, Sergey I. Sinkov1, Amanda J. Casella1; Gregg J. Lumetta1, and Samuel A, Bryan1

1- Energy and Environment Directorate, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, Richland, WA 99352

Development of more effective, reliable, and fast methods for monitoring process streams is a growing opportunity for analytical applications. Many fields can benefit from on-line monitoring, including the nuclear fuel cycle where improved methods for monitoring radioactive materials will facilitate maintenance of proper safeguards and ensure safe and efficient processing of materials. On-line process monitoring with a focus on optical spectroscopy can provide a fast, non-destructive method for monitoring chemical species. However, identification and quantification of species can be hindered by the complexity of the solutions if bands overlap or show condition-dependent spectral features. Plutonium (IV) is one example of a species which displays significant spectral variation with changing nitric acid concentration. Single variate analysis (i.e. Beer’s Law) is difficult to apply to the quantification of Pu(IV) unless the nitric acid concentration is known and separate calibration curves have been made for all possible acid strengths. Multivariate, or chemometric, analysis is an approach that allows for the accurate quantification of Pu(IV) without a priori knowledge of nitric acid concentration. Chemometric analysis is also an effective avenue for quantifying multiple species in solution that exhibit overlapping bands. This is demonstrated by the accurate measurement of multiple actinides (Pu(IV), Pu(III), U(IV), U(VI)) in multicomponent streams under dynamic conditions.

Thanks to everyone who participated in the poster session this year; all the posters were fantastic and it was dubbed the best EigenU poster session yet!

Top 10 reasons to come to EigenU 2017!

Mar 5, 2017

Howdy folks! All of us here at EVRI are getting excited for the 12th annual Eigenvector University, April 23-28 at the Washington Athletic Club in Seattle, WA. We’ve been updating our class list, and adding new examples and modeling techniques to make sure you get the best training in multivariate methods and chemometrics. Here are the top 10 reasons why we think you should be excited too:

  1. More experienced instructors – Courses at EigenU 2017 will be led by the EVRI staff including Neal B. Gallagher, R. Scott Koch, Robert T. Roginski, and Willem Windig, plus our Associate Rasmus Bro, and of course myself. Together we’ve got over 100 man-years of chemometric experience, and we’re all here to make sure you have a productive, fruitful week at EigenU.
  2. Wider variety of courses – In addition to our beginning track including PCA and PLS, we offer 11 advanced and specialty courses. This year features encore presentations of Managing Data, Models & Plots in PLS_Toolbox, and Model Deployment with Solo_Predictor & Model_Exporter. Calibration Model Maintenance returns this year with new and updated tools, as does the popular Bring Your Own Data (BYOD) Workshop where you work with your own data while you learn hands-on with EVRI’s team of instructors.
  3. Method-centric instruction – At EigenU we provide the background required to truly understand chemometric methods; we don’t just show you what buttons to push. Our goal is to make the literature in the field accessible to our graduates. Deeper understanding of the methods leads to better analysis!
  4. Spend a week in beautiful Seattle, WA – With Puget Sound and the Olympics to the West and Lake Washington and the Cascades to the East, the Emerald City is distractingly scenic. Plus, with attractions like the Space Needle, Pike Place Market, Seattle Art Museum, Seattle Mariners, and the largest ferry system in the US, there’s plenty to see and explore while not in class.
  5. The Washington Athletic Club – EigenU is held at the WAC, the nation’s premier city athletic club. The historic 21-story facility includes 5 floors of fitness facilities, 10 floors of Euro-styled techno-centric sleeping rooms, full service spa, and 3 restaurants.
  6. The food – From the continental breakfast, including the WAC’s signature sticky buns, the gourmet plated lunches, to afternoon snack bars, our guests always rave about the food.
  7. Networking – EigenU attendance is typically about 40 scientists and engineers with a range of chemometric expertise and wide variety of interests. This means you’ll have plenty of opportunity to find colleagues with common problems and complementary solutions.
  8. Evening events – EigenU provides ample opportunity to continue your chemometric learning and networking into the evening. This includes Tuesday’s PLS_Toolbox/Solo User Poster Session, Wednesday’s PowerUser Tips & Tricks Session, and Thursday’s Workshop Dinner, which is one more opportunity to enjoy the WAC’s fabulous food. The best two posters on Tuesday evening’s User Session will win a pair of Bose wireless headphones or wireless speakers!
  9. Flexible, multi-platform software – With PLS_Toolbox and MIA_Toolbox EVRI offers the most comprehensive set of chemometric tools available plus the flexibility of MATLAB. Our stand-alone packages Solo and Solo+MIA offer all the point and click tools of their MATLAB-based siblings. Plus they’re all available for Windows, Linux and MacOS. On-line tools Solo_Predictor and Model_Exporter provide a plethora of options for automating model application.
  10. Costs less – In spite of all its advantages, EigenU actually costs less than similar courses from our competitors, making it a reasonable and affordable option for everyone interested in honing their chemometric and advanced data analysis skills!

So it probably isn’t surprising that EigenU attendees are more than satisfied. Here’s what a couple of them had to say:

“EigenU is a wonderful, positive and informative place to learn about chemometrics methods that I feel confident applying to not only my research, but suggesting to collaborators as well.” -Brooke Reaser, University of Washington PhD Candidate.

“What you are offering here is unmatched.” – David A. Russell, Dupont.

Spots are already filling quickly so register today to reserve your place at EigenU 2017! Early registration ends March 23.

See you in April!


EigenU 2016 Poster Winners

Oct 6, 2016

Each spring at Eigenvector University in Seattle we showcase the scientific accomplishments of our users at the PLS_Toolbox/Solo Poster Session. With EigenU Europe quickly approaching, we thought it was about time to congratulate our poster winners from EigenU 2016 last April!

Brooke Reaser of the University of Washington, and Claire Muro of the University at Albany took home the poster prizes at the 11th Annual Eigenvector University. Brooke’s work used principal component analysis to determine the uptake of 13-C-labeling in Methylobacterium extorquens, while Claire’s poster focused on the differentiation of body fluid traces using PLSDA models. Their posters are attached below; congrats, ladies!

Forensic Body Fluid Differentiation Poster
claires-poster“PLS_Toolbox doesn’t just help with my research, it is an integral part of all of my work. I work with Raman spectroscopy, and my experimental data for any given project is usually thousands of spectra. I would say that PLS_Toolbox is just as important to my research as my Raman spectrometer, and I mean that. I wouldn’t be able to process the data or learn anything from it any way other than multivariate data analysis.” -Claire Muro, University at Albany PhD Candidate.

PCA C-13 Labeled Methylobacterium Extorquens AM1 poster
brookes-poster-screen-shotEigenU helped give me the idea to apply PCA to my metabolomics project in the first place, and the skills I learned there helped me in applying it successfully and meaningfully. EigenU is a wonderful, positive and informative place to learn about chemometrics methods that I feel confident applying to not only my research, but suggesting to collaborators as well.” -Brooke Reaser, University of Washington PhD Candidate.

For their efforts both Claire and Brooke took home Bose sound system products. Claire selected the Bose QuietComfort Headphones while Brooke took home the Bose Soundtouch Speaker System. We hope you enjoy them, you earned them! Congratulations again!

Eigenvector now has an Instagram account! Follow @eigen_guys to keep up with the latest adventures of the Eigenvector team, and make sure to check out our Twitter account for up-to-date info on courses and software.

Register for EigenU Europe, October 24-27

Oct 5, 2016

Registration for EigenU Europe in Montpellier, FRANCE is open! Join Dr. Barry M. Wise, Prof. Rasmus Bro and Dr. Sébastien Preys for four days, October 24-27, of beginning and intermediate chemometrics courses from the classic Eigenvector University series. The course will include:

We’ve also added a follow-on event Friday, October 28 with Dr. Fabien Chauchard on How to Implement Spectroscopic Techniques for Process Development.


To register and view lodging information, visit the EigenU Europe page. We hope to see you there in beautiful Montpellier next month!

Eigenvector now has an Instagram account! Follow @eigen_guys to keep up with the latest adventures of the Eigenvector team, and make sure to check out our Twitter account for up-to-date info on courses and software.

What Works and What Doesn’t

Jun 28, 2009

After SSC11 I got a note from my colleague Paman Gujral at the Automatic Control Laboratory at EPFL summarizing some of the talks. He wrote: “Rasmus Bro gave an excellent talk too about the pitfalls in using chemometric methods. Kowalski commented that software firms are a lot to blame for advocating methods that don’t work.” I was a little alarmed by this and so asked Rasmus about it, who wrote: “The comment of Bruce is maybe correct but it wasn’t meant as he states it. … as part of a discussion Bruce and others mentioned that also software companies have responsibilities in helping people take proper decisions. This was added to a more general agreement that education should be improved. So there was nothing dramatic or controversial in that.

In any case I’ve thought a great deal about that comment since Paman’s note. In fact, as a software company sometimes it’s hard to know when a new method comes out if it is going to live up to it’s initial hype. This is largely because nobody publishes negative results. If you lived on a steady diet of J. Chemo and ChemoLab, you’d think that EVERYTHING works, at least initially. So yes, it’s often up to us to sort out what works and what doesn’t. The often means coding it up ourselves, and trying it out. And sometimes even then the results are ambiguous. We don’t see where it definitely doesn’t work, and feel that, given what was in the original journal article, it’s worth putting into the software.

We figure that if more people have experience with a new method then eventually we’ll all figure out if it is generally useful. That happens faster when there is code available which implements the method. So yes, I’ll admit that we’ve put things in PLS_Toolbox that were “unproven.” I have stated this publicly, more than once. That said, I don’t recall ever promising these new techniques would work. Caveat emptor. Only in this case, it’s “let the user beware.”

I’ve put a lot of effort trying to make some methods live up to the initial claims. I could give you a list of my all time greatest “wastes of time” but at this point that would only serve to upset the originators of the methods. But I think we’ve been of more than a little service in helping sort some of these things out.

I certainly agree that “education should be improved,” and we strive to do that. One of the things we tell our students is to not believe everything they read or hear, and we try to give them the tools to dig past the hype. We also teach proper model validation. If you do a proper validation, you’ll at least know if one of these new techniques doesn’t work on your particular data.

But I don’t know how many times I’ve had to answer the question, “Why doesn’t your software do ______? The author/speaker says that it’s the best thing since Gauss.” And I have to answer, “Well, we haven’t tried it. But our experience suggests there are no silver bullets.”


Update on Chemometrics in Rome

Aug 6, 2008

Details are now available for our Basic Chemometrics in Rome, Italy, short course. Rasmus Bro will be joining me for this 3 day, hands-on course October 27-29, 2008.

The course page includes additional information about Rome, the course content, registration, prices, and nearby lodging. If there is anything you can’t find, please let me know!


Sabbatical at EPFL

Jul 16, 2008

In September of 2007 I received an offer I couldn’t refuse. When Professor Dominique Bonvin of Ecole Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL) wrote and asked if there was a chance to have me spend some time there in 2008, it didn’t take long for me to send back a positive response.

Besides the fact that EPFL is in a beautiful location, (on Lake Geneva in Switzerland), Dominique’s group there at the Automatic Control Laboratory has research interests that are well aligned with Eigenvector’s, and, of course, our users. For instance, they have worked on issues surrounding MSPC and curve resolution for investigating reacting systems.

I’ll be working with Michael Amrhein on model updating schemes for batch processes. This is rather timely as we work more and more with monitoring batch processes, including semiconductor manufacturing and bioreactors. Model updating is important because these process exhibit considerable drift with time.

I’ll be spending a little more than 2 months at EPFL, arriving in the last couple days of August and leaving in the first few days of November. My wife (and assistant!) Jill, will be along, as will daughters Clare and Mattie. It should be pretty much business as usual at EVRI, though it make take a few days on either end to set up operations to process orders, etc.

I look forward to this time to “sharpen the saw.”


EigenU Poster Winners

May 1, 2007

The EigenU poster session was tonight. This is a chance for our students to show their “chemometric stuff.” The attendees of EigenU vote on the best posters. This years’s winner’s were:

Jamin Hoggard and Rob Synovec, “Targeted PARAFAC Analysis with a Custom GUI for GC x GC x TOFMS Data”


Fang Cheng, Laura J. Gamble, David W. Grainger and David G. Castner, “Examination of Suface Hydrolysis in Thin Organic Films using Time-of-Flight Secondary Ion Mass Spectrometry and Principal Components Analysis”

The winners take home new Apple iPod Nanos. Congratulations to jamin and Fang!

Good job guys!


Eigenvector University 2007

Apr 28, 2007

Our annual series of chemometrics short courses starts tomorrow morning, April 29. So I’m sitting here at the Washington Athletic Club and enjoying a beverage and thinking about the week to come. We’re all set–the computers were delivered this morning and Scott came and installed software this afternoon. Jeremy will come tomorrow morning with all the class notes–once again organized by him and his wife Angela Carden. I’m patiently waiting (well, maybe not) for Bob Roginski to get here from Indiana, then we’ll be all ready for the morning.

Once again, we have about 30 students arriving from all parts of the country and overseas. Poster session has some good entries–looks like there will be some competition for the iPods!

All in all, looking forward to a good week!



Jan 11, 2007

Eigenvector Research, Inc. (EVRI) is a Chemometrics Research and Applications Company located in Wenatchee, Washington, USA. Our mission is to provide advanced chemometrics support for the semiconductor and chemical process industries, consumer product manufacturers and analytical instrument developers. Our goal is to be your complete source for state-of-the-art chemometric tools and know-how. More information on Eigenvector Research can be found on our main web page.