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Science and Technology Library Newsletter: May 17, 2004 Edition.
Newsletter Archive > 2004 May 17 Issue

Sci-Tech Library Newsletter

05/17/04


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  1. “CrossRef Search” PILOT: Free federated search engine!
  2. SCIENCE POLICY
  3. AROUND DC AND ON THE NET
  4. NEW E-BOOKS AND REPORTS
  5. INTERESTING WEBSITES AND NEWS FROM THE INTERNET: Exploring Search Engine Overlap, Magnetic Storm, Progress in the Study of the X-Ray Background; Biological Sciences: The Cicadas Are Here!, Two on Animal Encounters, Highveld.com; Education and Human Resources: International Education Indicators; Engineering: Engineering Conference International, Golden Gate Bridge, The IDE Virtual Design Museum, Engineering Is a Dream Career; Geosciences: GISS: Goddard Institute for Space Studies; Mathematical and Physical Sciences: Molecular Origami; Polar Programs: NOAA Arctic Theme Page; Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences: The Portable Antiquities Scheme, Black Ships and Samurai, Caveman Challenge . . . and more . . . plus news items from Edupage

  1. “CrossRef Search” PILOT
    http://www.iop.org/EJ/search_crossref

    “In order to open published scholarly content for the first time to free, full-text interpublisher searchability, a group of nine leading journal publishers are participating in a CrossRef Search Pilot.

    This Pilot is initially limited to the content of nine of the more than 290 CrossRef publishers who collaborate to provide scholars with cross-publisher reference linking.

    Through a special, reciprocal arrangement between Google and CrossRef, this Pilot launches a typical Google search but filters the result set to the scholarly research content from participating publishers, with the intent of reducing the noise produced by general web searches.

    Google has indexed the full text of scholarly journal articles on the publishers' websites through a CrossRef gateway. Users may submit searches from CrossRef Search Pilot boxes on participating publishers' sites. Results are returned from Google using the Google search and ranking algorithms, and using the article's DOI whenever possible to link from the search results to the published article.

    The purpose of the Pilot, which will run during 2004, is to determine the value to the scholarly community of a free, federated, full-text, interdisciplinary, interpublisher search focussed on the peer-reviewed scholarly literature.

    During the Pilot, the publishers will solicit feedback from end users, while reviewing the quality and functionality of the service itself. Additional publishers are expected to join the Pilot but no schedule for adding publishers has yet been set.”

    The publishers currently participating are:

    1. American Physical Society
    2. Annual Reviews
    3. Association for Computing Machinery
    4. Blackwell Publishing
    5. Institute of Physics Publishing
    6. International Union of Crystallography
    7. Nature Publishing Group
    8. Oxford University Press
    9. John Wiley & Sons

    This is a really neat effort on the part of these publishers. Give it a try.

  2. SCIENCE POLICY

    Is the U.S. Losing Dominance?

    “U.S. Losing Dominance in the Sciences Says NY Times
    ‘The United States has started to lose its worldwide dominance in critical areas of science and innovation’ as ‘foreign advances in basic science now often rival or even exceed America's, apparently with little public awareness of the trend or its implications for jobs, industry, national security, or the vigor of the nation's intellectual and cultural life,’ writes reporter William J. Broad in a front page, May 3 article in the New York Times. In addition to fewer Nobel Prizes going to Americans and a downturn in the number of scientific papers published, the number of American patents is also down, with a quarter of all U.S. patents awarded each year to foreign researchers working outside the U.S.

    While scientific accomplishments in Europe and Asia are on the rise, but largely go unnoticed in the United States, ‘China represents the next wave, experts agree, its scientific rise still too fresh to show up in most statistics but already apparent.’ In addition, the drop in the number of foreign students in the U.S., the ‘apparently declining interest of young Americans in science careers,’ and the graying of the technical workforce is a perilous combination of developments, says Shirley Jackson, president of AAAS, who asks ‘who will do the science of this millennium?’

    On May 5, the New York Times headline ‘National Science Panel Warns of Far Too Few New Scientists’ reports on the Science and Engineering Indicators 2004 study released May 4 by the National Science Board. Although 38 percent of the nation's current crop of scientists and engineers with doctorates are foreign born, the NSB predicts the U.S. will soon face a shortage of scientists because too few Americans are entering technical fields, visa restrictions are preventing more foreigners from working in the United States, and more skilled foreigners in countries committed to gains in science and technology are opting not to relocate to the United States. Says NSB Chair Warren M. Washington, ‘The United States is in a long-distance race to retain its essential global advantage in S&E human resources and sustain our world leadership in science and technology. For many years we have benefited from minimal competition in the global S&E labor market, but attractive and competitive alternatives are now expanding around the world. We must develop more fully our native talent.’

    A USA Today May 6 article also picked up the NSB study (‘Report: U.S. Losing Ground in Science Education’) and a May 5 Boston Globe editorial ‘Slipping in Science’ says ‘Jackson calls the attrition in scientists a ‘quiet crisis.’ The federal government, state governments, and local school districts have to start making noise about it.’

    The article ‘U.S. Is Losing Its Dominance in the Sciences’ can be found at http://www.nytimes.com/2004/05/03/science/03RESE.html. The USA Today article is at http://www.enc.org/redirect/ehn/?ehn_id=32108, and the NSB study can be found online at http://www.nsf.gov/.” (From NSTA Express)

    29th Annual Forum on Science and Technology Policy
    http://www.aaas.org/news/releases/2004/0422debateIntro.shtml

    Program
    http://www.aaas.org/spp/rd/forum.htm

    AAAS S&T Forum Opens With Lively R&D Budget Debate
    AAAS President Shirley Ann Jackson, president of Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI), welcomed some 600 attendees to a lively debate 22 April, the first day of the 29th Annual AAAS Forum on Science and Technology. In his opening remarks, U.S. Presidential Science Advisor John H. Marburger III cited President George Bush's science and technology accomplishments. But, Sen. Tom Daschle (D-SD) accused the current Administration of favoring “vending-machine science,” focused on quick, low-cost results. Marburger said that the President's proposed FY 2005 budget would represent a 44-percent increase in federal R&D over the past four-year term. Kei Koizumi, director of the AAAS R&D Budget and Policy Program, said that the President's proposed FY 2005 budget, combined with his plan to cut the deficit in half within five years, would mean cuts in R&D funding for all but three federal agencies by 2009.

    Includes texts of speeches by Jackson, Marburger, and Daschle and supporting documents.

    High schoolers lacking in math, science courses
    http://washingtontimes.com/national/20040428-104800-1077r.htm

    The High School Transcript Study
    http://nces.ed.gov/pubsearch/pubsinfo.asp?pubid=2004455

    “American students are not taking enough science and math courses in preparation for college or the work force, say education officials responding to yesterday's release of a federal study of high school transcripts.”

    Open Access Science Publishing

    Finland Committs to Open Access
    http://www.managinginformation.com/news/content_show_full.php?id=2670

    House of Commons Hearings on Scientific Publishing
    http://www.biomedcentral.com/openaccess/inquiry/

    Wellcome Trust Reports on Publishing Costs
    http://www.wellcome.ac.uk/en/1/awtprerel0404n318.html

    1. Finland becomes the first country to make a nationwide committment to open access.
    2. Transcripts of the UK House of Commons Science & Technology Committee oral evidence and written statements on scientific publishing.

    Statement and Recommendations on Visa Problems Harming America's Scientific, ...
    http://www.aaas.org/news/releases/2004/0512visa.pdf
    (pdf)
    “There is increasing evidence that visa-related problems are discouraging and preventing the best and brightest international students, scholars, and scientists from studying and working in the United States.”

    More than 20 organizations have signed a joint statement calling for change in the U.S. visa system to ensure continued free flow of scientific knowledge. Signers include the Assn. of American Universities, the National Academy of Science, the American Chemical Society, the AAAS, the American Physical Society, FASEB, and more . . .

  3. AROUND DC AND ON THE NET

    Christine Mirzayan Science and Technology Policy Internship Program
    http://www7.national-academies.org/internship

    The National Academies' Christine Mirzayan Science and Technology Policy Internship Program is now accepting applications from graduate and postdoctoral students for its fall 2004 session. The program is designed to engage science, engineering, medical, veterinary, business and law students in the analysis and creation of public policy and to familiarize them with the interactions of science, technology and government. The application deadline is Tuesday, June 1.

    Nanotechnology and Health
    http://www.iom.edu/event.asp?id=19608

    Nanotechnology and health is the topic of a daylong discussion beginning at 8 a.m. EDT Thursday, May 27 in Room 100 of the National Academies' Keck Center, 500 Fifth St. N.W., Washington, D.C. The daylong workshop, which is being held by the Institute of Medicine's Roundtable on Environmental Health Sciences, Research and Medicine, will discuss the health benefits as well as toxicological risks of nanotechnology. Admission is free and open to the public, but advance registration is required.

    Micro/Macroscapes
    http://www7.national-academies.org/arts/exhibitions_schedule.html

    Kysa Johnson's exhibition, “Micro/Macroscapes,” will be on display during a three-hour reception beginning at 5 p.m. EDT Thursday, May 20 on the first floor of the National Academies' Keck Center, 500 Fifth St. N.W., Washington, D.C. Johnson's work includes images of subatomic decay patterns, sound waves, neurons and galaxies. The event is free and open to the public.

  4. NEW E-BOOKS AND REPORTS

    Science and Engineering Indicators 2004. NSF, 2004.
    http://www.nsf.gov/pubsys/ods/getpub.cfm?nsb0401

    AAAS Report XXIX: Research and development, FY 2005. AAAS, 2004.
    http://www.aaas.org/spp/rd/rd05main.htm

    High School Transcript Study, 2000. NCES, 2004.
    http://nces.ed.gov/pubsearch/pubsinfo.asp?pubid=2004455

    Costs and Business Models in Scientific Research Publishing. Wellcome Trust, 2004.
    http://www.wellcome.ac.uk/en/images/costs_business_7955.pdf

    Handbook of Federal Librarianship. FLICC, 2004.
    http://www.loc.gov/flicc/pubs/federalhandbook.pdf

    Selection, Appraisal and Retention of Digital Scientific Data. ERPANET final report, 2004.
    http://www.erpanet.org/www/products/lisbon/LisbonReportFinal.pdf

    U.S. Academic R&D Continues to Grow as More Universities and Colleges Expand Their R&D Activities. NSF, 2004.
    http://www.nsf.gov/pubsys/ods/getpub.cfm?nsf04319

    Employment Outcomes of Recent Science and Engineering Graduates Vary by Field of Degree and Sector of Employment. NSF, 2004.
    http://www.nsf.gov/pubsys/ods/getpub.cfm?nsf04316

    The Role of Community Colleges in the Education of Recent Science and Engineering Graduates. NSF, 2004.
    http://www.nsf.gov/pubsys/ods/getpub.cfm?nsf04315

    Federal Obligations for Research by Agency and Detailed Field of Science and Engineering: Fiscal Years 1970-2002. NSF, 2004.
    http://www.nsf.gov/pubsys/ods/getpub.cfm?nsf04313

    Federal Obligations for Research to Universities and Colleges by Agency and Detailed Field of Science and Engineering: Fiscal Years 1973-2002. NSF, 2004.
    http://www.nsf.gov/pubsys/ods/getpub.cfm?nsf04314

    Bush Administration Science & Technology Accomplishments: Promoting Innovation for a Stronger, Safer America. OSTP, 2004.
    http://www.ostp.gov/html/AdministrationS&TAccomplishmentsApril2004.pdf

    Electronic Scientific, Technical, and Medical Journal Publishing and Its Implications: Report of a Symposium. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10969.html?do_se108

    Evaluation of the National Aerospace Initiative. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10980.html?do_se108

    The Mathematical Sciences' Role in Homeland Security: Proceedings of a Workshop. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10940.html?do_se108

    A Patent System for the 21st Century. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10976.html?do_se108

    Review of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Upper Mississippi-Illinois Waterway Restructured Feasibility Study: Interim Report. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10873.html

    Review of NASA's Longitudinal Study of Astronaut Health. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10903.html

    Newton, Isaac. Principia Mathematica, 1687, 1713 and 1726 editions.
    http://dibinst.mit.edu/BURNDY/Collections/Babson/OnlineNewton/Principia.htm

    Learning from SARS: Preparing for the Next Disease Outbreak -- Workshop Summary. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10915.html

    NIH Extramural Center Programs: Criteria for Initiation and Evaluation. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10919.html

    Review of the Desalination and Water Purification Technology Roadmap. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10912.html

    Implementing Randomized Field Trials in Education: Report of a Workshop. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10943.html

    Steps to Facilitate Principal-Investigator-Led Earth Science Missions. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10949.html

    Endangered and Threatened Species of the Platte River. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10978.html

    Evaluation of the National Aerospace Initiative. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10980.html

    Monitoring Metabolic Status: Predicting Decrements in Physiological and Cognitive Performance. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10981.html

    Eliminating Health Disparities: Measurement and Data Needs. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10979.html

    Plasma Physics of the Local Cosmos. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10993.html

    Digital People: From Bionic Humans to Androids. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10738.html

    Overcoming Impediments to U.S-Russian Cooperation on Nuclear Non-Proliferation: Report of a Joint Workshop. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10928.html

    University Research Centers of Excellence for Homeland Security: A Summary Report of a Workshop. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10984.html

    A Review of the FBI's Trilogy Information Technology Modernization Program. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10991.html

    Public Financing and Delivery of HIV/AIDS Care: Securing the Legacy of Ryan White. NAP, 2004.
    http://www.nap.edu/catalog/10995.html

  5. INTERESTING WEBSITES AND NEWS FROM THE INTERNET

    Progress in the Study of the X-Ray Background
    http://mitworld.mit.edu/video/197/

    Riccardo Giacconi, Research Professor, Department of Physics and Astronomy, The Johns Hopkins University, 2002 Nobel Prize in Physics, “Progress in the Study of the X-Ray Background”. Dr. Giacconi discusses the challenges in x-ray astronomy and the quest for improved instrumentation.

    Magnetic Storm
    http://www.pbs.org/nova/magnetic

    “On March 13th, 1989, the lights went out all across Canada and the eastern seaboard of the United States as far south as New York. The most serious power grid failure in American history was caused by a magnetic storm in the Earth's upper atmosphere, itself triggered by the eruption of a huge flare from the surface of the Sun. Unusual as this event may seem, many scientists today are beginning to worry that it may be a harbinger of things to come, and that changes to the planet's magnetic field could make us ever more vulnerable to deadly radiation from space. This film explores one of the least known but most serious threats to life on Earth.” This companion website to the Nova PBS program includes auroras, a simulated reversal of the magnetic field, and more!

    Exploring Search Engine Overlap
    http://searchenginewatch.com/searchday/article.php/3344081

    “Chris Sherman writes, ‘Search engine guru Greg Notess has long studied search engine overlap -- the number of pages found by more than one search engine. Greg's findings have consistently shown that there is very little overlap in the web page databases of the major search engines, meaning you'll likely get very different results depending on the engine....The results for most queries confirm Greg Notess' research: there is very little overlap in search engine results for most of the tests I ran. And in most cases, even the top ten results vary significantly from engine to engine.’ A perfect resource to use in demos when you need to show that results vary amongst major web engines.” (From ResourceShelf)

    Biological Sciences

    Highveld.com
    http://www.highveld.com/f/findex.html

    “Highveld.com is an Internet Directory of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology. It provides a guide to molecular biology databases, molecular biology protocols, molecular biology journals, molecular biology news, molecular biology information, and all molecular biology resources. The web site is full of links and information on all aspects of molecular biology and biotechnology.” (From Infomine)

    Two on Animal Encounters
    Fruit Fly Fight Club
    http://labworks.hms.harvard.edu/

    The Kravitz Lab Movie Page
    http://www.hms.harvard.edu/bss/neuro/kravitz/moviepage.html

    “Conflict and violence, regrettably, seem to be a commonplace element of the human condition, with certain epochs bearing witness to more of these two phenomena and, some bearing witness to a relatively absence of these behaviors. In an attempt to explain the biological factors behind such behaviors, Professor Edward Kravitz and his colleagues at Harvard University have created this witness which features fruit flies in intense combat in order to study these types of behaviors. On the first site, visitors can watch fruit flies in combat, listen to Professor Kravitz talk about the impetus and reasoning behind such experiments, and learn more about these extremely compelling studies. The second site leads to another set of dramatic short films that document lobster fights and lobster ‘martial arts.’ Of course, information on the various fights are ‘scored’ is also provided, along with video clips demonstrating the different phases of each encounter. [KMG]” (From the Scout Report)

    The Cicadas Are Here!
    Periodical Cicada Page
    http://insects.ummz.lsa.umich.edu/fauna/michigan_cicadas/Periodical/Index.html

    Periodical Cicadas
    http://biology.clc.uc.edu/steincarter/cicadas.htm

    Cicada Recipes from NPR
    http://www.npr.org/features/feature.php?wfId=1866011

    1. “Provides a profile of the ‘flying, plant-sucking insects’ also known as 13-year locusts and 17-year locusts. Discusses behavior, distribution in the United States, and potential damage to trees and shrubs. (They are not harmful to humans.) Includes many images of the cicada and audio of cicada ‘songs.’ From the University of Michigan Museum of Zoology.” (From Librarian's Index to the Internet)
    2. This page from J. Stein Carter is replete with photos and will sing a cicada ‘song’ to you.
    3. Yes, they are edible. Marinate 'em, fry 'em, eat 'em up! Yum! Like any food, they are only as safe as the way they are handled in preparation, and some folks could have food allergies. Be careful.

    Education and Human Resources

    International Education Indicators
    http://nces.ed.gov/surveys/international/IntlIndicators/

    “International Education Indicators is a compilation of indicators from a multitude of data sources which provides a rich array of information on the current state of education internationally. They are intended to provide snapshots of the U.S. education system in comparison to systems in countries around the world. New indicators are always being added.”

    Engineering

    Engineering Conference International
    http://services.bepress.com/eci/

    “Engineering Conferences International is pleased to team with The Berkeley Electronic Press to provide conference organizers with a highly visible, rapidly disseminated publication outlet for conference materials. The ECI Symposium Series electronically publishes presented papers, peer-reviewed articles, and other materials (presentations, data sets, video files, etc.) associated with ECI conferences.” Free, full text access to participating engineering conference proceedings.

    The IDE Virtual Design Museum
    http://www.io.tudelft.nl/public/vdm/

    “Many of the common objects in our everyday world (such as kitchen timers, telephones, and answering machines), seem to go unnoticed until someone wonders out loud: ‘I wonder who designed that?’ Fortunately, the good people at the Delft University of Technology's Faculty of Industrial Design have created this virtual design museum to answer that exact question, and to take visitors on a tour of some intriguing designs created by European and American designers over the past decades. Visitors are free to browse through the Famous Designers section which features the work of such icons as Raymond Loewy, Ferdinand Porsche, and Mario Bellini. Each entry includes a selection of images of some of the most celebrated designs, and in several cases a short biographical sketch is available. Visitors may also elect to look through the Famous Companies area, which brings together work by such companies as Bang & Olufsen, Braun, Grundig, and IBM. Those with only a few minutes will want to peruse such objects as Dieter Rams' design for a table top cigarette lighter for the Braun Company in 1970 and Aldo Rossi's 1995 coffee pot from the table service ‘il Faro.’ [KMG]” (From the Scout Report)

    Golden Gate Bridge
    http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/amex/goldengate/

    “This site is a companion to a Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) American Experience documentary about ‘the construction of what was then [1937] the longest suspension bridge in the world, built hundreds of feet above the dangerously churning waters of the entrance to San Francisco Bay.’ The site features a timeline, photos of bridge construction, information about people and events, and a discussion of mathematical principles. Also includes video clips, a teacher's guide, and related material.” (From Librarian's Index to the Internet)

    Engineering Is a Dream Career
    http://www.engineergirl.org/nae/cwe/egedu.nsf/(weblinks)/NKAL-5YBL2N?Ope

    Read the winning essays from the recent contest, “Engineering is a Dream Career,” on the National Academy of Engineering's EngineerGirl! Web site. The top three essays in each category -- fourth through eighth grade and ninth through twelfth grade -- received prizes.

    Geosciences

    GISS: Goddard Institute for Space Studies
    http://www.giss.nasa.gov/

    NASA's Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) presents its work in the prediction of climatic and atmospheric changes in the 21st century. Users can learn about GISS's many research projects in Global Climate Modeling, Planetary Atmospheres, Atmospheric Chemistry, and more. The website provides news releases of its work for the general public. Visitors can download many software packages including the latest GISS coupled atmosphere ocean model, called ModelE. Researchers can find a wide range of data sets of earth observations, climate forcing, global climate modeling, and radiation. The Publications link offers almost 1500 citations and abstracts as well as over four hundred online publications. Students can discover how to become involved with GISS's research activities. [RME] This site is also reviewed in the May 14, 2004 _NSDL Physical Sciences Report_. (From the Scout Report)

    Mathematical and Physical Sciences

    Molecular Origami
    http://www.stolaf.edu/people/hansonr/mo

    “ ‘Molecular Origami refers to the detailed folding and arrangement of atoms in molecules and network solids.’ There are two types of resources at this site:

    Throughout the page there are links to textual-information drawn from the book Molecular Origami by Robert M. Hanson (University Science Books). That book discusses molecular crystal-structures. It covers how to build data-driven paper models of small organic and inorganic structures. The examples shown are based on actual electron- and X-ray diffraction data (including exact scale for interatomic distances and bond-angles). Models are discussed in terms of molecular orbital theory.

    Downloadable IBM PC software is provided to draw molecular origami structures onscreen from PDB Protein Data Bank files. The site provides information on software capabilities (such as coordination with Chime and Rasmol), software commands, and student exercises.” (From Infomine)

    Polar Programs

    NOAA Arctic Theme Page
    http://www.arctic.noaa.gov/

    A well-presented portal to information on the Arctic region. Included in the NOAA Arctic theme page are:

    • Essays on key Arctic issues by respected Arctic scientists
    • Frequently Asked Questions About the Arctic
    • North Pole web cam
    • Current status of the Arctic environment
    • Central access to widely-distributed data and information related to the Arctic from research institutions world-wide
    • Color graphics and animations of Arctic related data
    • Educational links, including topics such as Northern Lights, Arctic pollution, animals, maps, Arctic exploration, Native Peoples, and more.
    • Links to International Arctic scientific research institutions, program offices and data centers

    Social, Behavioral and Economic Sciences

    Caveman Challenge
    http://www.bbc.co.uk/science/cavemen/

    Play some simple games to determine how well you might have survived 10,000 years ago. Would you know how to use tools? Could you develop language? A fun website from the BBC.

    The Portable Antiquities Scheme
    http://www.finds.org.uk/

    “The Portable Antiquities Scheme is a voluntary recording scheme for archaeological objects found by members of the public. Every year many thousands of objects are discovered, many of these by metal detector users, but also by people whilst out walking, gardening or going about their daily work. Such discoveries offer an important source for understanding our past.” An intriguing UK website!

    Black Ships and Samurai
    http://www.blackshipsandsamurai.com

    “The MIT OpenCourseWare project published this online exhibition as part of the ‘Visualizing Cultures’ course. ‘The major entry on this website is a Core Exhibit featuring some 200 Japanese and American graphics depicting the 1853-1854 mission by Commodore Matthew Perry that led to the opening of Japan to the outside world.’ The exhibit details how this cultural collision manifested itself in the visual culture of the Americans and Japanese. An annotated list of sources accompanies the exhibition. Also featured are: Interactive Black Ship Scroll” (From Infomine)

    Edupage

    The following items are from Edupage. To subscribe to Edupage: send mail to: listproc@educom.unc.edu with the message: subscribe edupage Anonymous (if your name is Anonymous; otherwise, substitute your own name). To unsubscribe send a message to: listproc@educom.unc.edu with the message: unsubscribe edupage. (If you have subscription problems, send mail to: manager@educom.unc.edu.)

    U.K. LIBRARIANS AND ACADEMICS DISAGREE OVER PUBLISHING CRISIS
    http://www.infotoday.com/newsbreaks/nb040503-3.shtml

    At a British Parliamentary hearing, academics and librarians from higher education in the United Kingdom presented conflicting opinions about whether the country is experiencing a crisis in access to scientific publications. The hearing was held by the U.K. Parliament's Science and Technology Select Committee, which is conducting an inquiry into pricing and availability of such materials. The consensus among the librarians at the hearing was that there is a very real crisis, both in pricing and availability. Members of the library community supported Open Access (OA) publishing, which requires payment from authors for publication. Many of the academics at the hearing, however, denied there is a crisis in academic publishing and rejected OA, saying it raises a range of problems, not least of which is the required upfront payment from authors. Some academics complained that the committee's selections of speakers at the hearing unfairly favored publishers, who agree with librarians that the academic publishing industry is not flawed.
    Information Today, 3 May 2004 via Edupage.

    U.K. OFFICIALS END VIRTUAL UNIVERSITY
    http://chronicle.com/prm/daily/2004/05/2004050606n.htm

    The Higher Education Funding Council for England has decided to discontinue a virtual university set up in 2001 due to low numbers of students enrolled. U.K. eUniversities Worldwide (UKeU) had hoped to draw 5,600 students in its first year, but three years later, the program only has 900 students enrolled. The British government had allocated $111 million for the program, of which about $63 million has been spent. Other anticipated sources of funding, including partnerships with businesses, never materialized at acceptable levels. According to members of the funding council, the crash of the dot-com economy at about the same time as the founding of UKeU led to the lack of interest from most corporations. Others believe that UKeU was flawed in its design, relying on faculty without adequate experience in online education, and that developers of the program spent their resources building an educational platform rather than using tools available on the market.
    Chronicle of Higher Education, 6 May 2004 (sub. req'd) via Edupage.

    FEDS REVAMP SUPERCOMPUTING PROJECT, OVERSIGHT
    http://chronicle.com/prm/daily/2004/05/2004051404n.htm

    The Bush administration this week announced its support of the High-Performance Computing Revitalization Act of 2004, which would coordinate national supercomputing resources and expand access to them for various research programs. Currently, oversight of supercomputing efforts is spread among the Energy Department, the National Science Foundation, and eight other federal agencies. Under the proposed legislation, the White House's Office of Science and Technology Policy would have authority to manage all federal supercomputing systems, implementing a plan that would “provide for sustained access by the research community ... to high-performance computing systems that are among the most advanced in the world.” The measure would also provide support for federal efforts to develop associated software technology and to promote graduate and undergraduate studies in several areas, including engineering, computer science, library and information science, and applied mathematics.
    Chronicle of Higher Education, 14 May 2004 (sub. req'd) via Edupage.

    ASSOCIATIONS CALL FOR EASING OF STUDENT VISA RESTRICTIONS
    http://online.wsj.com/article/0,,SB108440195338910027,00.html

    A group of 25 organizations has called on the federal government to modify security rules put in place after the September 11 attacks, saying that the new procedures are hurting U.S. research efforts. Because many international students are looking elsewhere for academic training, especially in the sciences, the United States risks becoming “isolated,” according to Alan Leshner of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, one of the organizations that signed the statement. A study by the Association of American Universities, which also signed the statement, found that 50 percent of students affected by visa delays are from China, which, with India, sends the most students to the Unites States. A separate study by the Council of Graduate Schools found that international applications to U.S. graduate schools were down by 32 percent from 2003 to 2004. The groups called on the federal government to streamline the visa application process, which currently takes an average of more than four months, and to grant security clearance to foreign students for the duration of their time in the United States.
    Wall Street Journal, 13 May 2004 (sub. req'd) via Edupage

    FEDS NO LONGER RECOGNIZING BOGUS DEGREES
    http://www.fcw.com/fcw/articles/2004/0510/web-creds-05-14-04.asp

    Following an investigation by the General Accounting Office (GAO), the federal government's Office of Personnel Management (OPM) has announced a new policy of not recognizing degrees from diploma mills. The GAO report identified several hundred federal employees, including some high-level officials, who had reported earning degrees from unaccredited institutions. Kay Coles James, director of OPM, sent a memo to all federal managers stating that diplomas from degree mills cannot be used in applying for any federal job, obtaining salary increases, or receiving tuition reimbursement. The memo stated, in part, “You may not send employees to diploma mills for degree training or any other form of education.... You may not use your authority to repay student loans if the degree is from a diploma mill.” According to the OPM, diploma mills are institutions that are unaccredited or that award degrees with little or no coursework.
    Federal Computer Week, 14 May 2004 via Edupage.

    APPLE OFFERS HARDWARE FOR BIOINFORMATICS RESEARCH
    http://www.internetnews.com/dev-news/article.php/3354081

    In an effort to get more researchers to use Macintosh technology, Apple Computer is offering workgroup clusters to five bioinformatics research projects in the United States. According to the company's Web site, Apple will choose five projects based on “the applicant's scientific record, the likelihood that this project will discover something novel using the award, and the likelihood that this research focus would yield methods or discoveries applicable to the broader life science community.” Each winner will receive an Apple Workgroup Cluster for Bioinformatics, including server hardware, bioinformatics applications, and three years of service and support. Apple has been working with researchers to encourage wider use of its products in scientific pursuits, such as an initiative at Virginia Tech to combine 1,100 Apple computers in a cluster configuration. That project resulted in one of the fastest computing systems in the world.
    Internet News, 14 May 2004 via Edupage.


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