The Scout Report -- Volume 11, Number 35

September 2, 2005

A Publication of the Internet Scout Project
Computer Sciences Department, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Sponsored by University of Wisconsin - Madison Libraries.

Research and Education

General Interest

Network Tools

In The News

Research and Education

Leaving Money (and Food) on the Table [pdf]

The Brookings Institution has a broad range of research interests, ranging from informed commentary on the Middle East to energy policy here in the United States. One of the organization's more recent pieces analyzed participation in the USDA's food stamp program, in conjunction with Census 2000 data. Their report revealed a few troubling situations, including the fact that only about one-half of all individuals in major metropolitan areas who were eligible for food stamps received benefits in 1999. Perhaps even more astonishing was the revelation that approximately $4.9 billion in food stamps went unclaimed during that same year. This important 24-page report, authored by Matthew Fellowes and Alan Berube, concludes with a number of helpful policy suggestions, noting that federal officials should attempt to emphasize the local importance of food stamps and support state policies that streamline access to these benefits. [KMG]

Slave Trade Archives [pdf]

Documenting the history of the slave trade during the past centuries is a monumental task, but the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is most certainly qualified for such an endeavor. Launched in 1999, the Slave Trade Archive Project was created in order to improve access to original documents related to the transatlantic slave trade and slavery across both hemispheres. Visitors to the project website will want to read some of the organizational documents, then proceed to the parts of the site where they can learn more about what is being done on a region-by-region basis to fulfill this mission. The site itself serves as a fine clearinghouse for information about the slave trade more generally, and includes sections that contain lists of external websites and multimedia archives available from other institutions. Some of these sites include the African Studies Collection at Indiana University and the Amistad Research Center at Tulane University. Overall, this is a great place to learn about the myriad of organizations that are working in tandem to preserve the documents related to this highly complex set of historical (and contemporary) processes and experiences. [KMG]

The Association of American University Presses [pdf]

University-sponsored presses are almost as old as the very enterprise of higher education itself, as their origins can be traced back to the publication of a commentary on the Apostle's Creed at Oxford in 1478. The Association of American University Presses (AAUP) was formed in 1946, and its website offers information that is both specific to the enterprise of scholarly publications and to the general book-loving public. Perhaps most visitors will want to start at the site's "Books for Understanding" feature. Here they will find works published by member university presses that deal with contemporary themes, including civil liberties and terrorism. Another fine resource is the 2005 University Press Books Selected for Public and Secondary Schools Libraries online bibliography. Here visitors will find a list of high-quality titles (organized around the Dewey Decimal system) that will be of interest to readers and librarians. Finally, visitors can also visit the News Desk area to learn about the role university presses play in society and view a list of awards won by AAUP member publishers. [KMG]

Women of Protest: Photographs from the Records of the National Woman's Party

This new addition to Library of Congress' American Memory makes 448 images culled from approximately 2,650 photographs in the Records of the National Woman's Party, and held by the Manuscript Division at Library of Congress, available online. The National Woman's Party was the militant wing of the suffrage movement, whose members engaged in public protests, such as picketing, pageants, parades, hunger strikes, and demonstrations, often resulting in arrests and imprisonment, all to bring publicity to the cause of women's right to vote. Pictures reflecting this broad range of tactics, dating from 1875 to 1938 (the majority from 1913 and 1922) are showcased at the website. The gallery entitled Suffrage Prisoners presents portraits of roughly 60 National Woman's Party activists who were jailed for their role in suffrage protests.

The Making of Modern Michigan

A number of digital collections have been started at the country's universities in order to both provide access to otherwise little-seen materials and to also train staff how to create such increasingly valuable online collections. Under the direction of staff members at Michigan State University, The Making of Modern Michigan brings together important documents dealing with Michigan history. On the project website, visitors can now view materials from 36 libraries via a search engine or they may also browse the materials by contributing institution. Some of the material here is quite splendid, including the Ward Morgan Photography Collection from Western Michigan University. This particular collection includes archival photographs of a number of urban areas throughout the twentieth century. Here visitors will find street scenes of Kalamazoo in the 1920s, census workers,and industrial accidents. [KMG]

Southern California Earthquake Data Center [pdf]

To say that there are a few earthquake research centers in Southern California is a bit like saying that Chicago sits on a lake of some size. It's a bit of an obvious remark, but given that there are a number of such projects, it's important to take a look at some of the more compelling ones out there. One such important resource is the Southern California Earthquake Data Center, sponsored by a host of organizations, including the California Institute of Technology and the United States Geological Survey. Visitors to the project site can peruse some of its recent work, which includes a clickable map of the region that features information on recent earthquakes in California and Nevada. Equally compelling is the clickable fault map of Southern California where visitors can learn about the local faults and recent activity along each fault. Another key element of the site is the historical earthquake database, which may be of interest to both the general public and those who are studying this area. [KMG]

General Interest

Sounds of Sinatra Sinatra [Free registration required]

Whether one knows him by one of his popular sobriquets ("Ol' Blue Eyes" or "The Voice") or just through his distinctive vocal styling, Francis Albert Sinatra remains one of the most popular singers ever. These two sites pay tribute to his legacy through words and music, both of which are quite apropos. The first link leads to the homepage of The Sounds of Sinatra, which is a radio program hosted by Sid Mark. Here visitors can listen to the program and learn about the persons who helped Sinatra along the way, including noted arrangers, bandleaders, and composers. The second site leads to a lovely page created by the Jersey Journal in order to offer a diverse portrait of one of the Garden State's favorite sons. Here visitors can join one of many discussion forums, peruse a photo gallery of Sinatra throughout the years, and of course, material on his friends and colleagues, including Dean Martin and Peter Lawford. [KMG]

Campus Blues

By this time every year, students on college campuses across the country have returned to the dormitories, and many of them begin to encounter a host of different problems. Some may be lonely at being away from home and others may have a hard time transitioning from high school to a place that requires a bit more personal responsibility. Fortunately, for parents, administrators, and students themselves, there is this fine website. provides access to a host of helpful resources centered around topics such as eating healthy on campus, relationships, alcohol, and mental health. The homepage contains links to all of these sections, and also a number of featured articles. A number of these articles address timely subjects, such as "Myths and Facts About the College Experience" and "Do Best Friends Make Best Roommates?" The homepage also features recent news stories that address a number of these related themes. Finally, visitors can also use a drop-down menu to find out information specifically geared towards college freshmen, sophomores, juniors, and seniors. [KMG]

NOVA: Mystery of the Megaflood [Macromedia Flash Player]

More than 75 years ago, Professor J. Harlan Bretz of the University of Chicago began to explore the dusty scablands of eastern Washington in an attempt to learn more about this rather unique area and also to determine how this land was transformed over time. Bretz soon came to the conclusion that the scablands were not the result of slow geological weathering, but rather the result of a massive flood that moved across the region. The response from the geological community was one of incredulity, and it took many decades before his provocative thesis was widely accepted. This site, created by the NOVA program on PBS, provides a number of complementary online materials for those who are curious to learn more about the subject. On the site, visitors can read an interview with scabland expert Vic Baker of the University of Arizona on this fantastic region and also explore the scablands through an interactive feature. [KMG]

Berenice Abbott: Changing New York, 1935-1938

Born in Ohio in 1898, the career of Berenice Abbott was largely based in New York City, with the exception of an important period spent in Paris. During her long life, she wrote a number of influential pedagogical works on photography and also managed to create some evocative portfolios of work on New York under the auspices of the Federal Arts Project in the 1930s. As Abbott noted in an introduction to this work (titled "Changing New York"), the project was intended "to preserve for the future an accurate and faithful chronicle in photographs of the changing aspect of the world's greatest metropolis." In these fifty or so images, users will be treated to some views of places and buildings that have changed dramatically (and some not at all) during the decades since, including a restaurant in the Bowery, the recently vacated fish market on South Street, and Columbus Circle. [KMG]

Duke Law & Technology Review

Law school students are well known for trying to "do good" whether it be through aiding wrongly accused persons, or by providing legal advice at any number of free clinics. This academic and policy-oriented online publication from the people at Duke University's Law School is another such endeavor, and one that is worth a closer look. The publication's general area of interest is in the intersection of law and technology, and as such it draws on the knowledge base of specialties that include business law and intellectual property. The school's Law & Technology Review consists primarily of short issues briefs that provide insight into a wide range of issues for both the legal community and professionals working in these areas more broadly. Visitors to the site can browse the different briefs through a listing of general thematic areas or merely scroll through the site's homepage. [KMG]

Trust Territory of the Pacific Islands

As the United States began to cede control over the vast cultural area known as Micronesia, there was great concern over what would become of the vast archival materials produced during the post-World War II period by a variety of governmental agencies. In the early 1980s, Sam McPhetres, in collaboration with the University of Hawaii Library, began to document and microfilm these governmental files, with the hope that many of these materials will be made publicly available to researchers and other interested parties. While many of the government documents themselves have yet to materialize on this site, visitors will find hundreds of archival photographs here for their consideration. These images cover such topics as school graduations, gatherings of chiefs, agricultural projects, and the Micronesian Olympics. For convenience, visitors can browse the photographs by reel or through searching the photograph description files. [KMG]

Network Tools

HotRecorder 2.0.1

When having online conversations, sometimes a mere emoticon just won't do. For those who are looking to add a bit of variety to such social interactions, there is the HotRecorder application. With this program, users can record and add "emotisounds" to voice communications that take place over the Internet. The program works in conjunction with a number of such communication tools, including Skype, Google Talk and Yahoo Messenger 7. Other helpful features include a number of recording tools and some detailed search features. This application is compatible with Windows XP/2003 server. [KMG]

Adium X 0.84

Developed during the past few years, Adium X 0.84 is an instant messaging application that can be used with a variety of additional programs, including AIM, Yahoo, and MSN. The visual look of the application is quite arresting, and the application also allows for multiple protocols, along with tabs that can be dragged. This version of Adium is compatible with Mac OS X 10.2.7 or later. [KMG]

In The News

Officials and aid groups begin to assess damage wrought by Hurricane Katrina

NPR: Gulfport Streets Show Extent of Storm's Fury [RealPlayer]
Governor: Everyone must leave New Orleans,1280,-5245444,00.html
Floodwaters, tension rise in New Orleans
Inside the Daily Pulse: Rescue and Relief
Colleges Near and Far Offer Help to Campuses Stricken by Hurricane
Network for Good

Striking an area west of New Orleans all the way east to Pensacola, Hurricane Katrina wreaked havoc across the southeastern United States earlier this week. One meteorological aspect that reduced the relative effect of the storm was the fact that a bit of dry air from the Midwest weakened the hurricane before it reached land and pushed the storm slightly to the east. While the damage to the area will reach into the tens of billions of dollars, civic leaders and relief organizations have their hands full as they try to coordinate a multi-pronged effort to bring medical supplies, food, oil, and other crucial items to the areas affected by the storm. Some of the many challenges facing local administrators include moving thousands of storm refugees who are temporarily housed in the Superdome in New Orleans all the way to the Astrodome in Houston and also attempting to avert a public health disaster by provisioning safe drinking water to hundreds of thousands of people. Of course, one must remember that the Crescent City and environs have persevered and certainly flourished during the past three centuries, and thanks to the efforts of many people and organizations, the region will no doubt continue to regroup and rebuild during the coming weeks and months.

The first link leads to a fine audio news feature from National Public Radio provides coverage of the damage caused by Hurricane Katrina in Gulfport, Miss. The second link will take visitors to a news piece from the Guardian that discusses the recent order from Louisiana Governor Kathleen Blanco that states that everyone must leave the city of New Orleans immediately. The third link leads to a news piece from CNN that talks about the multitude of challenges facing New Orleans, such as looting, rising water levels, and the problems faced by area hospitals. The fourth link leads to a site provided by AOL that contains news stories about rescue and relief efforts in the area, along with comments left by those affected by the disaster. The fifth link leads to a story from the Chronicle of Higher Education talks about the (as yet) little discussed problems faced by students at colleges and universities in the area devastated by the hurricane. The sixth and final link to the Network of Good website provides an opportunity for individuals to make donations to a number of philanthropic organizations providing relief services, including America's Second Harvest and United Way for the Greater New Orleans Area. [KMG]

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