The Scout Report -- Volume 9, Number 12

March 28, 2003

A Publication of the Internet Scout Project
Computer Sciences Department, University of Wisconsin-Madison

In This Issue:

NSDL Scout Reports

Research and Education

General Interest

Network Tools

In The News

NSDL Scout Reports

NSDL Scout Report for Math, Engineering, and Technology
The sixth issue of the second volume of the MET Report is available. Its Topic in Depth section offers Web sites and comments about Web robots and Web mining.

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Research and Education

Betraying the College Dream: How Disconnected K-12 and Postsecondary Education Systems Undermine Student Aspirations [.pdf]
The staff of the Bridge Project (located at Stanford University and sponsored in part by the Pew Foundation) recently released this sobering appraisal of the lack of compatibility between K-12 and higher education, and the potential reasons why many students have difficulty making an effective and successful transition between the two. Authored by Andrea Venezia, Michael W. Kirst, and Anthony L. Antonio, the 72-page report contains a number of sections, including various policy recommendations for politicians and educational leaders. Some of the more troubling findings deal with inequalities throughout education systems in college counseling, college preparation course offerings, and connections with local postsecondary institutions. The policy recommendations contained in the report are numerous, and include provisions for providing students, parents, and educators with high-quality information about (and access to) courses that will help prepare students for college-level standards, along with focusing on the institutions that serve the majority of students. [KMG]
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PhilSci Archive
The PhilSci Archive is an electronic archive for preprints dealing with the philosophy of science. Developed in conjunction with the Philosophy of Science Association and the Center for Philosophy of Science at the University of Pittsburgh, the goal of the Archive is to promote communication in this scholarly field by the rapid dissemination of new work. Persons working in this field are welcome to post their own work online here, though it should be noted that there is no peer review process, as would be the practice with an academic journal. That said, visitors can browse through the available papers by topic (such as causation, decision theory, and laws of nature), or through a simple search by title, abstract, or author. The site is rounded out by a FAQ section and a place where persons may deposit papers for inclusion on the site. [KMG]
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University of Chicago Cultural Policy Center
Drawing on the strengths of the University of Chicago's Humanities Division, and the Harris Graduate School of Public Policy, the Cultural Policy Center is "dedicated to fostering research and public dialogue about the practical workings of culture in our lives." On the site, visitors can learn about upcoming conferences sponsored by the Policy Center (many of which are held in Chicago), their ongoing research projects, and publications and working papers developed as part of the work being done at the Center. The working papers deal with a host of different topics, including "The State Arts Agency Policy Environment" and "Making a List and Checking it Twice: The List as a Tool of Historic Preservation." Finally, several lists of germane Internet sites are offered on their links page, thematically divided into research centers and government and advocacy groups. [KMG]
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True Needs, True Partners: Museums Serving Schools [.pdf]
This 16-page report from the Institute of Museum and Library Services examines the vibrant and complex relationship between museums and schools throughout the United States. As Robert S. Martin, director of the Institute, suggests in the introduction, "Museums are important to the education of our children because they can connect students to ideas and experiences in direct, vivid, and meaningful ways." Drawing on the work of a previous study released in 1995, this survey sought information about how museums work with schools, what grades are served, and why schools choose to partner with museums. Utilizing a sample size of 376 institutions, the report found that these institutions collectively spent over a billion dollars on K-12 educational programs in 2000-2001, and that museums provide many education programs specifically designed to support school curriculum standards and learning objectives. Broad in its scope and intent, this report will be of great interest to those working in museum outreach programs and persons working in educational administration or program development. [KMG]
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Social Security Online History Page [Real Player]
The creation of the Social Security program during the presidency of Franklin D. Roosevelt is widely understood to be one of the most important pieces of social welfare legislation in United States history. Drawing on their vast repositories of oral histories, audio recordings, and primary documents, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has established this Web site that will be of great help and assistance to researchers looking for a holistic appraisal of the Administration's historical development and contributions to the welfare of the American public. Visitors will want to check out the detailed explanation of how Social Security numbers are assigned (and who received the first number back in 1936). One fascinating feature is the sound and video clip section, which features radio debates on the merits of the Social Security program taped during 1935 and Lyndon B. Johnson's remarks on the passage of the Medicare bill in 1965. The Web site also includes transcriptions of oral histories done with administrators of the SSA over the past 65 years. All in all, this site serves as a well-thought out archive that deals with the transformation of the federal government's role in increasing its influence in the arena of social welfare. [KMG]
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Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, Transgender and Queer Encyclopedia
Edited by Claude Summers and Ted-Larry Pebworth, this online encyclopedia is an excellent resource for information about many aspects of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender culture. From the main page, users can search the encyclopedia by keyword, or move through one of the thematic sections offered here, such as literature or the arts. Each of these sections contains an alphabetical subject guide and a popular topics section. Also featured is a Spotlight section that, in March 2003, features an extended essay on lesbian photography before Stonewall. The site also has a lively, monitored discussion area, featuring commentaries on literature, a suggestion area, and feedback on technical issues related to the site. Finally, the site has a list of all contributors to the project, with links to each of their entries. [KMG]
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British Columbia's History of Education Web site
Dating back to the area's early days as a British colony, the province of British Columbia has a long history of educating its residents that dates back to a company school built on Vancouver Island for employees of the Hudson's Bay Company in 1849. Located at Malaspina University College in British Columbia and edited by Dr. Patrick Dunae, this Web site is dedicated to recounting the history of education in the province, along with providing links to contemporary educational aids and materials for teachers. First-time visitors will want to begin by browsing through the interactive timeline of British Columbia education, which encompasses the period from the 1840s to the 1990s. A section dealing with historic textbooks and reading primers contains a searchable database of 2700 items, along with scanned versions of several well-known Canadian readers like "Jerry and Jane" from the 1930s. The site also includes lesson plans and educational expectations from the 1890s, and full-text versions of important historic legislation in Canada, such as the Common School Act of 1865 and the Public School Act of 1872. [KMG]
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New Technology and Manufacturing Processes [.pdf]
New Technology and Manufacturing Processes is part of the Pittsburgh Supercomputer Center's (PSC's) annual report for 2002. It is comprised of fifteen articles that describe research and innovations at PSC during the year in areas of Manufacturing Process Design, Semiconductor Design and Production, Design of New Materials, and Aerospace Engineering and Design. The articles are contributed from many different sources and institutions, but they all worked with PSC to take advantage of its powerful terascale computer system for advanced simulation and analysis. This site is also reviewed in the March 28, 2003 NSDL MET Report. [CL]
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General Interest

The Hector Berlioz Website
Perhaps best known for his dramatic "Symphonie Fantastique," Hector Berlioz was the preeminent romantic French composer of the 19th century. Created and maintained by Monir Tayeb and Michael Austin, this Web site brings together an impressive amount of information about Berlioz, including many of his writings, compositions, and reviews (as he was a well-known critic). Music students and aficionados will want to take a look at the (almost) complete collection of scores available here, which include detailed notes and comments on different works. Along with an annotated bibliography of scholarship about Berlioz, a section describing Berlioz's predecessors and contemporaries examines the inspiration he gained from the works of Shakespeare and Beethoven. A rather novel feature of the site is the Berlioz's Paris section, which provides a visual commentary on his life in the city, complete with photographs of places where he lived and other locations of note. [KMG]
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Southern Mosaic: The John and Ruby Lomax 1939 Southern States Recording Trip
This site, developed by the American Memory Project at the Library of Congress, draws on the voluminous collection of recordings made by John and Ruby Lomax on their three-month trip across the American South in 1939. The pair traveled over 6,500 miles and, along the way, recorded approximately 25 hours of folk music from over 300 performers. These gems of American musical culture include fiddle tunes, cowboy songs, field hollers, lullabies, and spirituals. As with previous American Memory collections, users can search the entire collection by keyword, along with subject, performer, and song text. Additionally, the site features biographical sketches of John and Ruby Lomax, a map of the region covered by the pair, and 307 pages of fieldnotes. Finally, the site also has a special thematic presentation that contains a detailed itinerary of their travels, complete with hyperlinks to songs recorded along the way. [KMG]
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England on Film: Living History from the North East and Cumbria [Real Player]
The BBC is known around the world for its vast collection of audio and visual material that dates back to the corporation's earliest days. Drawing on these vast resources, the BBC has established this Web site (in conjunction with a living history television show) to place some of these materials online, available for the general public. The site itself is divided into five broad themes, including Play, Good Times Bad Times, and Shopping. Within each section, there are a number of video clips that relate to the selected theme, along with a background essay that discusses the general theme of the section. Visitors are also encouraged to share their own life experiences on the site, ranging from discussions of the old High Street to working in the tea factory on Tyneside. Overall, this is an interesting and engaging introduction to the recent social history of the area stretching from Northumberland to North Yorkshire. [KMG]
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Women of Our Time
This lovely little exhibition from the National Portrait Gallery shows off about three dozen portraits of prominent American women from the 20th century. In the main Gallery, scroll through thumbnail portraits such as Julia Child shopping in an Italian market in Boston in the 1970s, Marilyn Monroe entertaining troops in Korea in 1954, or Maya Lin talking to a black cat in her New York City apartment. Larger views and information about the women depicted, as well as the settings of the photographs, are available by clicking any thumbnail. There are two "sidebar" sections: Biographical Moments and Styles, where visitors can watch and listen (or read a transcript) of curator Frederick Voss's illustrated lecture on the ways these portraits help us understand their subjects' lives, and the evolution of styles in portrait photography. [DS]
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Web surfers looking for a wide variety of current news about Kenya will enjoy looking through this Web site, which features news items from the East African Standard and other local and regional newspapers. The main page is divided into topic news areas, including sports, national items, and weather. From the left-hand side of the main page, visitors can find out more specific information about Kenya's government, ethnic groups, and economy. The most helpful section in this area is the one devoted to Kenyan history, as it offers a broad overview of the country's development, going back to the late Stone Age and continuing up through independence from Britain. Understandably, there is also an extensive section devoted to tourism, which may be a boon to persons hoping to travel to Kenya in the future. [KMG]
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Girl Power
Launched in 1996 by former US Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Donna Shalala, the Girl Power! Program seeks to encourage 9 to 13 year-old girls to make the most of their lives, and "to support and nurture girls in order for them to be confident, fulfilled, and true to themselves." With that in mind, this Web site is designed to be a clearinghouse of information, press releases, and activities for both parents and young women alike. The section for parents contains information about ongoing activities sponsored and endorsed by Girl Power, along with current cultural quizzes that will help keep parents in touch with their children. The area for young women features an interactive school locker that contains a "talk-back" section, fun games and activities, and information on healthy eating habits and maintaining a balanced body image. The last section on the site provides links to external sites dealing with surveys and studies on young women, such as ones dealing with substance abuse, perceived threats, and gender roles. [KMG]
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Chronicles of Oklahoma
Developed through a partnership between the Oklahoma Historical Society and the Oklahoma State University Library Electronic Publishing Center, this site makes 20 volumes of the Chronicles of Oklahoma available for researchers and the general public. Originally published by the Oklahoma State Historical Society, the available volumes range in date from 1921 to 1942. Users may search the volumes indices provided online, or search by keyword. The volumes contain a number of compelling articles on Oklahoma history, such as "Oklahoma as a Part of the Spanish Dominion, 1763-1803" and "My Experience with the Cheyenne Indians." The table of contents for each volume is a helpful way to browse through the different volumes. Along with the volumes currently available online, more volumes will be added in the future, time and money permitting. [KMG]
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Network Tools

Vcatch Virus Catcher
Designed to check all the files sent or downloaded to any given computer, this latest edition of Vcatch will prove quite helpful to users concerned with the integrity of their operating system. Vcatch utilizes the Advanced Malicious Application Detection system, which scans every incoming file looking for suspicious characteristics, while utilizing a flexible rules system. Users are able to set the preferred security level and, as a result, are provided the option of whether they want to be notified or not regarding a potential security breach. Vcatch is compatible with all systems running Windows 95 and higher. [KMG]
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Alepin 2.43
Intended to serve as a subtle improvement over TextEdit, Alepin is a small application that serves as a notepad and scrapbook. Some of its many features include file import and export functionality, an auto-save command, various fonts, and easy navigation of multiple pages. Users also have the ability to examine screen shots of the application, and a FAQ section contains details about the product and its various uses. Alepin 2.43 is compatible with all systems running Mac OS X. [KMG]
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In The News

Military Personnel Overseas "Weblog" Their Experiences Online
"Webloggers," Signing on as War Correspondents
Soldiers Post "War Blogs" from Iraq,,t277-s2132519,00.html
L.T. Smash
A Minute Longer: A Soldier's Tale Best War Blogs
Let Slip the Blogs of War
The Home Front: Dispatches of Ernie Pyle
Over the past few years, Weblogs have become quite popular, with thousands of individuals, organizations, and other groups forming their own sites devoted to this form of online expression. For those unfamiliar with this growing phenomenon, a Weblog is quite literally a "log" of the Web, where the author links to other Web pages he or she finds interesting, complete with running narration and brief descriptions. (Note to readers: The Scout Report has its own Weblog located at ) With the war in Iraq, many United States military personnel have created their own Weblogs, often recounting personal stories, daily events, and tributes to fallen colleagues. The United States military has adopted an open policy towards this practice, though some commentators have expressed concern that certain sensitive material might be disseminated through these reports. Despite these concerns, "on-the-spot" broadcasts have been a hallmark of war-time reporting since the days of Ernie Pyle, and are likely to continue unabated.

The first link takes visitors to a recent news article from the Washington Post about the growing number of war-related Weblogs. The second link is to a news article from the online technology news service, ZD Net UK, about the wide variety of Weblogs that have emerged as of late. The third link leads to one of the most popular soldier produced Weblogs, created by "L.T. Smash," the nickname of a US Navy reservist who arrived in the Gulf region last December. The fourth link is to another soldier's Weblog, a US Army reservist who goes by the name "Will." The fifth link is to a feature that ranks a number of war Weblogs on presentation, quality, relevance, and reputation. The sixth link is to an editorial about war Weblogs by Tim Cavanaugh, writing for the Online Journalism Review, a Web-based journal produced at the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Southern California. The last link leads visitors to a collection of columns written by the legendary Ernie Pyle, the Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist and World War II correspondent. [KMG]
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Copyright Susan Calcari and the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents, 1994-2003. The Internet Scout Project (, located in the Computer Sciences Department of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, provides information about the Internet to the U.S. research and education community under a grant from the National Science Foundation, number NCR-9712163. The Government has certain rights in this material. Permission is granted to make and distribute verbatim copies of the entire Scout Report provided this paragraph, including the copyright notice, are preserved on all copies.

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