Twenty years ago, the science of Compound Management was in its infancy...
Sample management has changed enormously over the intervening years. In the beginning, sample management often meant storing samples in unlabelled tubes in a freezer in a cupboard, or even in the car park!
The only labelling was writing on the rack or on the bag. In rare cases there might be a 1D barcode on the side of the rack. Databases were just Word or Excel files, and there was no concept of having sophisticated tracking for chemical compounds.
It has changed totally in the last 20 years, from a rudimentary start. Later, sample management began to be taken as a genuine serious discipline as organisations realised that their compound libraries were highly valuable.