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About meta-synthesis

Founded in 1999 and based in the UK, meta-synthesis is a scientific publishing house offering books, posters, databases, multimedia materials, web books, seminars and short courses that attempt to explain and demystify chemical reaction science by presenting an overview of the subject. We also provide consultancy services to education and industry.

Our products are derived from the work of Dr Mark R. Leach:

In Mark's own words:

Some people collect stamps.

I collect chemical entities and study their structure, interactions and reactions.

I use a MySQL relational database called The Chemical Thesaurus Reaction Chemistry Database, or ChemThes – available at www.chemthes.com – to store, sort, classify and slice 'n' dice information about chemical entities and the interactions and reactions they undergo.

Against this solid, data driven background, I have studied the ideas of Mendeleeve, Lewis, Pauling, Ingold, Hückel, Pearson, Jørgensen, Fukui, Klopman, Woodward & Hoffmann, Olah, Scerri and many others.

Using software tools – including spreadsheets, relational databases and the Spartan molecular modelling package – I take a combinatorial and systems approach to exploring the reaction chemistry space close to the periodic table of the elements.

In the Chemogenesis Web Book I look at the main group binary compounds in terms of van Arkel-Ketelaar triangles & Laing tetrahedra of structure, bonding and material type. I use five hydrogen probe experiments to find objects & patterns in reaction chemistry space, including: congeneric arrays, the five reaction chemistries, the Lewis acid/base interaction matrix and the mechanism matrix.

I explore "Chemistry, The Whole Thing" in terms of complexity and the nature of structural theory.

I seem to be filling part of the scientific story between the periodic table and the established disciplines of organic and inorganic chemistry, an area that is poorly covered by traditional texts. I call this new science 'chemogenesis', as it deals with the emergence of mechanism and chemical reactivity.

The Chemogenesis Webbook is a completely new chemistry text.

  • For the first time chemical structure & reactivity is presented as a linear narrative, rather than as a collection of tenuously connected factoids.
  • As the author, I suggest that: the chemogenesis web book is the chemistry textbook unmuddled.

The Chemogenesis Webbook is also a new type of textbook in that it is dynamic. The ChemThes reaction chemistry database engine is used to drive interactive web pages such as the Binary Material, Thermochemistry, Redox & Addition Synthlets; mini-applications written in MySQL/PHP/Java script that make predictions about chemical structure & reactivity.

At all times the chemogenesis analysis is backed by the rigour and beauty of the relational schema that lies behind The Chemical Thesaurus reaction chemistry database.

Mark R Leach Ph.D.

Read more in a 2006 interview with Mark Leach in Reactive Reports.

     meta-synthesis: The Timeline

B.Sc. Chemistry, Loughborough University
Ph.D. Organic/organometallic chemistry, University of Salford
Question: "How can chemistry be computerized?"
The zen answer: Mu. You are asking the wrong question: "What is chemistry?"
Larkhall Rise
08:06:1986  16:30

June The 8th Theory: Independent congeneric series

Write/draw out reactions on 5x3 file cards and sort
Analysis of chemical reactions in terms of congeneric series
Study theory & philosophy of chemistry
Heavy use of spreadsheets
Discovery of the Lewis acid/base interaction matrix

The PNG Decade

Move the mapping of chemistry data from spreadsheets to a relational database
Extensive use of ab initio chemistry software using Spartan
Separate ideas about chemistry from chemistry data
All reactions are changes in phase space, and changes in phase space can be mapped to an elegant RDMS schema
Map p
rocesses that can be expressed as a chemical equation of the type:
       A   →   B
       X   +   Y   →   Z

       p   +  q    →   r   +  s
Enter reaction chemistry data from all branches of chemistry
Develop software synthlets utilising reaction chemistry data


Publication: The Chemical Thesaurus 1.0, Helix Express RDMS

Launch of the meta-synthesis company: www.meta-synthesis.com
Publication of the Lewis Acid/Base Reaction Chemistry book. ISBN 0-9536960-0-6
Publication of the Patterns in Reaction Chemistry poster
Publication of the The Chemical Thesaurus 1.5
Compile the chemogenesis narrative: Understand how chemical structure and reactivity emerge from the periodic table and inevitably produce the Lewis acid/base interaction matrix
Publication of The Chemical Thesaurus: v2, v3 & v4
Dec 2003
Feb 2004
May 2004
Aug 2004
Aug 2004
Sep 2004
Oct 2004
Oct 2004
Dec 2004
Jan 2005
Feb 2005
Apr 2005
Aug 2005
Sep 2005
Oct 2005
Dec 2005
Jan 2006
Feb 2006
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Jul 2006
Sep 2006
Oct 2006
Nov 2006
Nov 2006
Nov 2006
Dec 2006
Jan 2007
Jan 2007
Feb 2007
March 2007
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June 2007
Aug 2007
Nov 2007
March 2008
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July 2008
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Aug 2009
Jan 2010
March 2010
March 2010
March 2010
April 2010
May 2010
July 2010
Sept 2011
Dec 2011
Jan 2012
March 2012
June 2013
Sept 2013
Dec 2014
Dec 2016
Chemogenesis Web Book Uploaded to the Web
Chemogenesis: Update
Chemogenesis: Update
Chemogenesis: vA-K Triangle update
Chemogenesis: Laing Tetrahedron update
ChemThes: A-Level Chemistry
Chemogenesis: Periodic Tables update
Chemogenesis: Main Group Elements update
Chemogenesis: General updates
Chemogenesis: General updates
Chemogenesis: HSAB page update
Chemogenesis: General updates
Chemogenesis: Chemistry & Complexity
Chemogenesis: Classification of Matter
Chemogenesis: General updates
Chemogenesis in 500 seconds
Chemical Thesaurus ported to web
Chemogenesis: General updates
Chemistry Tutorials & Drills
Chemogenesis: General updates, Periodic Tables
Chemogenesis: General updates
ChemThes: Sorts & Finds redesign
Chemogenesis: Why Chemical Reactions Occur
Chemogenesis: Electronegativity update
Chemogenesis: VSEPR
Chemogenesis: Periodic Tables
Small Tournament Systems
Chemogenesis: Periodic Tables, basic & simple substance
Chemogenesis: Chapter order change
Chemogenesis: Binary Material Synthlet
Chemogenesis: Congeneric Array Database
Chemogenesis: Clickable Matrix & General Updates
Chemogenesis: Redox Chemistry Synthlet
Chem-Drills: Nomenclature Tester
ChemThes: Links to Wikipedia, NIST & Webelements
Chemogenesis: Thermochemistry Synthlet
Chemogenesis: The Truncated Tetrahedron
Chemogenesis: Database of Periodic Tables
Chemogenesis: Binary Compounds
Chemogenesis: Truncated Tetrahedron
ChemThes: Count Reactions
Chemogenesis: Five Sections to Web Book
Chemogenesis: Addition Synthlet
The Glade 70m Internet League
Chemogenesis: Lewis Acid/Base Matrix Database
Chemogenesis: Lewis Theory
Chemogenesis: General Updates
Glade League: Update
YouTube Video: The Bohr Atom and Chemical Theory
YouTube Video: The Truncated Tetrahedron
Chem-Drills: Major Update & Redesign
Thermochemistry Build-A-Reaction Synthlet
LAA County Records Database
Update Database of Periodic Tables with .htaccess redirects
Ginette's Orange Gate Journal website
Electronegativity Is Basic Elemental Property Paper submitted
BOW International League
Electronegativity Is Basic Elemental Property Paper published
30 Second Elements (Ivy Press, Ed. E. Scerri). Chapter by MRL
Set of 4 Lewis Acid/Base Videos uploaded to YouTube
Orange Gate Journal (book by Ginette Leach) published
Mac Ruff Sketchbooks are uploaded to the web

Many thanks to Athif Mohammed and Hamza Jafree who helped with development in 2004 and Luke Jordan in 2010.

Our domains include:



© The ideas behind, and implementation of, the Chemogenesis web book, The Chemical Thesaurus reaction chemistry database and the Chemistry Tutorials & Drills web site are entirely Mark Leach's.

© Mark Leach 1996- mrl@meta-synthesis.com