List of software that every scientist should know

TECHOMAT's favorite software

Here I listed my most favorite (and sometime unfavourite) software that I am using in my work and research. I should mention this is only my personal opinion and there might be many more better tools. Anyhow… I try to continuously add more categories to this list and I do my best to keep this list up to date. Besides whenever I have some free time I will write a short review on each item. If you have any suggestion that can make this list better please share it with me and TECHOMAT’s audiences by leaving a comment under this post.

(Last update: 09.09.2015)

#Data Processing

  1. MATLAB: MATLAB is an engineering software/programming-language which you can do almost everything want with it. In MALAB all the calculations are based on data matrices. It comes with many built-in functions and toolboxes and it has a large online community which helps you to learn and troubleshoot MATLAB.
  2. R: R is a powerful programming language that can be used specially in statistical analyses. If you already know MATLAB, then working with R shouldn’t be a big deal for you. The biggest advantage of R compared to MATLAB is being free and open source.
  3. Python: A high level programming language that you can use it in your data processing projects.
  4. Microsoft Excel: An easy to use software which allows you process your data in an user-friendly environment. It is the most popular software for data processing.
  5. OriginLab: A very similar tool to Excel but with more flexibility and more professional outputs.
  6. OpenOffice Calc: If you do not want to pay for Excel or OriginLab then an alternative tool to these two is OpenOffice Calc.

#Word Processing

  1. LaTex: a free typesetting system which makes you able to produce very high quality professional documents. it may takes some few days that you learn how to work with it but once you learnt it, you will love it. I recommend this tool specially when you want to write a scientific text with many mathematics or chemical formulas. The only disadvantage of LaTex that I experienced is the difficulty of working on a project with a group of people. There are many free latex template elsewhere that you can use them for ease of use.
  2. Microsoft Word: is there anybody who does not know it? Microsoft’s lovely user friendly word processor.
  3. OpenOffice Writer: If you like to write your documents with a free software similar to Microsoft Word then OpenOffice Writer may be a good choice. As it is a free software it has some limits compared to Word but I still suggest you to try it.

#Bibliography Management 

  1. JabRef: my favorite reference manager which is free, powerful and very easy to use. The advantage of JabRef is that one can easily import and export different format with it.
  2. EndNote: the most professional reference manager from my point of view. However as it is a very expensive commercial software and by considering JabRef in the list which almost do the same job for free, I do not recommend EndNote.
  3. Mendeley: a software and scientific network to find and share scientific articles. Upon registration one will get a free storage space of 2 GB.


  1. PowerPoint: the most popular presentation software which I believe is a “must to know” software for any scientist because most of the time you need to present your work results.
  2. Prezi: a very nice cloud-based presenting tool which by that you can make an outstanding outputs. If you want to use it for free then you are limited to 4 GB storage space (which most of the time is enough) and you can edit your presentation just online. However you can present your file even when you are offline.

#Graphics & Image Processing

  1. ImageJ: a very powerful free image processing software which is developed at the National Institute of Health in USA. It has many different tools and plugins which made it a great candidate for technical usages.
  2. CorelDRAW: a professional photo editor and graphics design tools which can be used to produce very high quality documents.
  3. Gimp: a free graphics design and photo editor.
  4. IrfanViewanother free image viewer/editor.

#CAD Design

  1. AutoCAD: a very powerful CAD software made by Autodesk. It included many tools which can help you in your designing projects. The good news is that if you are a student you can register in Autodesk website with your university email and you can use all the Autodesk products for education purposes with out any limit.
  2. Belender: a free open source 3D CAD software which even NASA use it to prepare its 3D models. Do you still need more motivation?


  1. Evernote: my most favorite note-taking software which I installed it on my office computer, my laptop and my mobile phone. It helps you to take notes from whatever I like, tag them and sync them between my different devices to use them wherever and whenever I want.

  2. MS OneNote: a very easy to use note-taking software developed by Microsoft which you can use it in many different platform. It can do similar jobs as Evernote can do however personally I like to work with Evernote rather than OneNote, but is just a matter of taste.

#Cloud Storage

  1. Dropbox: do you need a 2 GB free storage space online where you can store your files and projects to work on them or access them from everywhere? then you may need to sign up for a Dropbox account.
  2. Google Drive: 2 GB is not enough? then you should try 15 GB Google Drive.
  3. OneDrive: An alternative service to Google Drive with similar storage limit.

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5 replies

  1. Thanks a lot for sharing the list:)


  2. Thanks, hope it helps fresh researcher


  3. I appreciate your tastes man, familiar with most of them, used many of them, last but not least, it was a nice experience sharing article 😉

    Liked by 1 person


  1. Six steps to get your article published in a peer-review journal | TECHOMAT

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