The Scout Report -- Volume 11, Number 9

March 4, 2005

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

NSDL Scout Reports

Research and Education

General Interest

Network Tools

In The News

NSDL Scout Reports

NSDL Scout Reports for the Life Sciences and Physical Sciences

The fifth issues of the fourth volumes of the Life Sciences Report and Physical Sciences Report are available. The Topic in Depth section of the Life Sciences Report annotates sites on The Living Soil. The Physical Sciences Report's Topic in Depth section offers websites and comments about Magnetars.

Research and Education

Land Tenure Center [pdf]

Established in 1962, the Land Tenure Center (LTC) is perhaps one of the most well-regarded university-based institutions to deal specifically with land policy across the world. Essentially, the LTC "serves as a global resource institution on issues relating to land ownership, land rights, land access, and land use." The LTC is also highly regarded for its interdisciplinary research approach which places a premium on working collaboratively with host-country institutions and individuals in the areas of policy analysis, research, and training. On the organization's site, visitors can learn about their various ongoing research programs, its staff members and affiliates, and the lectures and events it sponsors. Of course, the publications area is quite strong, and all documents created since 1996 are available online. These papers include such titles as "Patterns of Tenure Insecurity in Guyana" and "Indigenous Land and Community Security: A (Radical) Planning Agenda". [KMG]

Invasive Plant Atlas of New England

Many persons have grown increasingly concerned about various invasive species, and despite the scientific debates about what constitutes such a species, ecologists and others will find this site quite helpful. Drawing on support from the USDA, this project was developed by the Ecology and Evolutionary Biology Department of the University of Connecticut, the New England Wildflower Society, and several other participating organizations. This site includes a Web-accessible atlas that contains images and descriptive information for the invasive and potentially invasive plants in New England. Visitors can create their customized maps that document these species by utilizing the online records database, and also just search the species by geographic species. As a way of introduction, visitors can also browse a current list of species for which data has been collected thus far. Persons interested in volunteering for the project may also want to take a look at the volunteers section which lists the times of upcoming training sessions. [KMG]

National Cancer Institute [pdf]

Established under the terms of the National Cancer Act of 1937, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) is a component of the National Institutes of Health. The scope of the NCI is extremely broad, and its work includes conducting and supporting research; training; health information dissemination; and other programs with respect to the cause, diagnosis, prevention, and treatment of cancer, rehabilitation of cancer, and the continuing care of cancer patients and the families of cancer patients. First time visitors may want to start by reading the latest NCI Cancer Bulletin, which is available from the homepage. If users find the information therein helpful, they may also elect to subscribe at no charge to the Bulletin. The Quick Links section is also of use, and contains a dictionary of cancer-related terms, funding opportunity notices, and a host of NCI publications. Finally, the site is also available in Spanish. [KMG]

The Cloud Appreciation Society [jpeg]

The Cloud Appreciation Society believes that "clouds are Nature's poetry" and, therefore, "pledges to fight 'blue-sky thinking'." Visitors can find out about the latest cloud related news and events. The website offers a forum for users to ask cloud-related questions and communicate with other cloud enthusiasts. Anyone in the UK can join the society for free and membership will soon be expanding to other areas of the world. Everyone should check out the numerous fascinating pictures in the cloud gallery. Individuals can also contribute their cloud photographs to the continually growing collection. This site is also reviewed in the March 4, 2005_NSDL Physical Sciences Report_. [RME]

Internet: The Mainstreaming of Online Life [pdf]

Web-browsers have been a commonplace of the online experience for approximately a decade, and in some ways, everyday use of the Internet has transformed certain aspects of modern life. This fourteen-page report from the Pew Internet & American Life Project, authored by Lee Rainie and John Horrigan, takes a critical look at how the Internet has woven itself into mainstream American life. As might be expected, the report concludes that much of the online world mirrors the activities of the offline world. The report also notes that during the early days of the Internet the average user tended to be young white males with a high income level, and that during the past few years, this pattern has changed dramatically. Overall, the report is well-written and also complemented by a nice series of tables and graphs. [KMG]

Job Sprawl and the Spatial Mismatch between Blacks and Jobs [pdf]

In the urban policy literature, there are many issues which attract the attention of scholars, politicians, and other practitioners. One rather thorny issue that continues to be of great interest is often called the "spatial mismatch. At the risk of oversimplifying this issue, the essence of this concept is that most job growth and creation occurs at some distance from those persons who are in most dire need of employment. This phenomenon is explored in depth throughout this recent paper composed by Michael A. Stoll for the Metropolitan Policy Center at The Brookings Institution. In its fifteen pages, this report (released in February 2005) highlights several key findings, including the observation that metropolitan areas with higher levels of employment decentralization exhibit greater spatial mismatch between the relative locations of jobs and black residents. [KMG]

Capturing Cultural Value [pdf]

Various policy analysts, politicians, and other persons have become increasingly intrigued by the potential that various cultural programs and initiatives may have in terms of economic development in their respective regions. This report, authored by John Holden on behalf of the Demos Group in London, examines the way in which government views the potential benefits of various cultural programs. In this 62-page report, Holden argues that arts and other such programs should be funded because of their cultural contribution to society, rather than for the increasingly popular reason given by many units of governance, which is that they can effectively deliver government policy. The report goes on to argue that government should move from a target-oriented, top-down approach to one that is more cognizant of the full range of values created by culture. [KMG]

Royal Forest and Bird Protection Society of New Zealand: Best Fish Guide [pdf]

From the Royal Forest and Bird Protection Society of New Zealand, this website contains a guide to ecologically conscious fish consumption. This informative "guide profiles New Zealand's 62 commercial marine fisheries and species, and advises consumers on the best choices according to the ecological ranking of each fishery. Each profile takes into account the state of fish stocks, bycatch, damage done to marine habitats and other ecological effects of the fishing." The full guide (published June 2004) is available in two downloadable reports: the first is an 84-page document providing a summary of the ecological rankings; and the second is a 42-page document addressing the criteria for ecological rankings. In addition, site visitors can view online summary information by fish species; and a download a wallet card guide as well. For the epicure, the site also shares recipes for the guide's top twelve seafood choices. This site is also reviewed in the March 4, 2005_NSDL Life Sciences Report_. [NL]

General Interest

Beyond the Fire: Teen Experiences of War [Macromedia Flash Reader]

The experience of war is traumatic for all persons who happen to be involved in such activities, whether they be soldiers, commanders, or civilians who are caught up in the ensuing maelstrom. This interactive site tells the story of teenagers involved in various conflicts around the globe, and is maintained by the good people at the Independent Lens Organization. Upon reaching the site's homepage, visitors will be enticed by the multimedia portraits of such teenagers, including Naima Margan in Somalia and Shaima Abdul in Afghanistan. After listening to their stories, visitors may elect to offer feedback on the program, or read transcripts of the participants' comments. The features that educators will appreciate include an interactive world map, conflict timelines, and facts about each country. The site is also rounded out by a fine selection of links to outside Web-based resources, such as the World Fact Book and the homepage of the Coalition to Stop the Use of Child Soldiers. [KMG]

The Curiae Project

Law students, lawyers, and the general public will find The Curiae Project, based at Yale University's Law School, to be immensely helpful. On the site visitors can view a list of featured arguments and briefs which rotate on the site's homepage on a regular basis. The project has also created a ranking index which ranks the most commonly cited Supreme Court decisions, largely based on a number of works on constitutional law. Not so surprisingly, some of these cases include Marbury v. Madison, Gibbons v. Ogden, and Plessy v. Ferguson. Additionally, visitors can examine a list of the most frequently viewed cases, which include Brown v. Board of Education, Baker v. Carr, and Lochner v. New York. The site also contains a search engine and a number of links to external resources of note. [KMG]

Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online [Macromedia Flash Player]

Provided by the online Library and Archives of Canada, the Dictionary of Canadian Biography site is a tremendously helpful source of brief and informative profiles of those personages of importance throughout Canadian history from the year 1000 to 1930. The print edition of the Dictionary of Canadian Biography's first volume was released in 1959 and was a collaborative research and publishing project between the University of Toronto and the Universite Laval. With a Flash-enabled search engine, visitors can search through the approximately 8,000 entries by topic, date range, or geography. Some of the persons profiled within these electronic pages include Claude Dablon, the noted 17th-century priest and missionary, and Arthur Vallee, the noted physician and asylum superintendent. The homepage of the site also has a "quick biography" search feature that will assist those persons who already know who they are looking for in the Dictionary. [KMG]

The National FFA Organization [pdf]

Founded in 1928 as the Future Farmers of America, The National FFA Organization is a youth organization that has almost half a million student members who are engaged in a wide range of agricultural education activities. The organization has over 7,000 chapters which concentrate on three primary areas: premier leadership, personal growth and career success. While 30 percent of its members come from farming communities, some 70 percent of FFA members are from rural non-farm, urban and suburban areas. On the homepage, visitors can learn about such events as National FFA Week, scholarship opportunities, and the organization's various conferences. For educators, the Educators Workroom will be a place that will be very helpful. Here they can learn about innovative teaching practices in agricultural education and also learn about various strategies for working with young people. [KMG]

The Doris Ulmann Photograph Collection

Born in New York City in 1882, Doris Ulmann was a graduate of the school of the Ethical Culture Society, a socially liberal organization that was know for championing individual worth regardless of ethnic background or economic condition. Over her life, Ulmann documented the rural people of the American South and also created a series of prominent intellectuals of the day, including John Dewey and Lewis Mumford. Recently, the University of Oregon Libraries created this fine digital collection that provides access to 1,800 of approximately 12,000 images from the Ulman Photograph Collection. Visitors to the site can browse the collection or perform advanced searches utilizing such fields as title, description, and photo date.

Center for Applied Linguistics [pdf]

The Center for Applied Linguistics (CAL) is a private non-profit organization comprised of scholars and educators "who use the findings of linguistics and related sciences in identifying and addressing language-related problems." The organization's homepage will be of great interest to educators and policy-makers alike, as it contains a number of very useful resources, lesson plans, and other materials. Visitors can begin their journey by clicking on one of the topic areas on the left-hand side of the screen. The topic areas include bilingual education, language testing, school reform, and refugee concerns.

Network Tools

SecretMaker 4.1.4

With more and more people sending all types of sensitive information via the Internet, this handy application should prove to be something that will be useful for many individuals. This application combines several tools, including a spam fighter, a pop-up blocker, history cleaners, and a cookie eraser. Additionally, users can create their own specialized plug-ins. This version of SecretMaker is compatible with all operating systems running Windows 98 and newer. [KMG]

NewsMac 3.1.3

Individuals who seek to take control of the vast news sources on the Web will definitely want to take a look at the latest version of NewsMac offered here. The application allows visitors to bring together all of their favorite news sites into one place, along with performing full-text keyword searches. Of course, users can also synch all of this material up with their iPod devices as well. The rather sleek and well-designed interface is another highlight of this application. NewsMac 3.1.3 is compatible with all operating systems running Mac OS X 10.3 or later. [KMG]

In The News

New hotel near Hitler's Bavarian retreat draws sharp criticism

Hotel on site of Hitler's Alpine retreat opens to criticism
Luxury and Wellness in Hitler's Alpine Nest,1564,1481454,00.html
Berchtesgadener Land
German Propaganda Archive
OSS Psychological Profile of Adolph Hitler

Just over a month after the 60th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, another reminder of Adolf Hitler's legacy has created additional controversy in Germany. This week a five-star hotel operated by the InterContinental group opened near the location of Hitler's Alpine retreat on top of the Olbersalzberg mountain in Bavaria. Bavarian tourism and finance officials were quick to defend the decision to allow the construction of such a property, and some local residents also spoke out in favor of developing the region's tourism industry. Hitler's original retreat on the site was largely destroyed by Allied bombers near the conclusion of war, and the US military used the area as a resort for more than 50 years before returning the area to Germany in 1996. Since 1999, there has been a documentation center that has provided information to tourists on the history of the site. The hotel remains controversial, and as one former leader of one of Germany's leading Jewish organization commented, "The building of a luxury hotel in Olbersalzberg is tasteless and robs the place of its history".

The first link offered here will take visitors to a news story from The Globe and Mail that offers some discussion of the new hotel. The second link will take visitors to another piece about the new luxury resort and hotel, offered by the Deutsche Welle, the well-regarded German international broadcasting service. The third link leads to a website dedicated to providing tourist information about the Berchtesgaden region of Germany. The fourth link leads to the official homepage for the state of Bavaria where visitors may learn about government, economy, education, and the people in the region. The fifth link leads to a fine online archive of Nazi and East German propaganda offered for scholarly and educational purposes through the efforts of Professor Randall Bytwerk at Calvin College. The final link will take visitors to the very interesting psychological profile of Adolph Hitler that was created during World War II by Walter C. Langer of the Office of Strategic Services in the hope that such a report would "be helpful in gaining a deeper insight into Adolf Hitler and the German people". [KMG]

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From The Scout Report, Copyright Internet Scout Project 1994-2005.

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Copyright Susan Calcari and the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents, 1994-2005. 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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The Scout Report (ISSN 1092-3861) is published weekly by Internet Scout

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