The Scout Report -- Volume 12, Number 6

February 10, 2006

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

Harvard University Institute of Politics: Forum Archive [Real Player]

If you are looking for a place online to find William Julius Wilson, Cesar Chavez, or Lech Walesa, you should look no further than the very fine online video archive of the John F. Kennedy Jr. Forum from Harvard Universitys Institute of Politics. Over the past thirty years, the Institute has held hundreds of public addresses and panel discussions on a myriad of topical issues. Recently, they created this online archive so that the web-browsing public could view some of these events at their leisure. Currently, the archive contains over 1200 Forum events, including those that deal with the environment, Afghanistan, aging, and the Cold War, among other themes. Visitors can use the online search engine to locate videos by participant, year, keyword, or topic. [KMG]


The ancient urban world is one that is becoming more well-known, largely through the work of dedicated scholars and numerous other passionate individuals. This website offers an interesting and compelling look inside Mohenjo-daro (Mound of the Dead), a city that is located in the Indus Valley in Pakistan. The site was created and developed by Professor Jonathan Mark Kenoyer of the University of Wisconsin, and it contains an illustrated essay on the site and 103 images taken over the past thirty years. First-time visitors will want to peruse an introductory essay that discusses the history of various excavations on the site, along with providing some details about the composition of the site. Visitors can proceed to look through the images, which are organized into sections that provide views of the sites different areas, including the courtyard and a number of wells. [KMG]

National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder [pdf, Real Player]

In response to a Congressional mandate, the Department of Veterans Affairs created the National Center for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in 1989 to address the needs of veterans with military-related PTSD. Over the past sixteen years, the Center has created a cornucopia of helpful resources on this subject, including fact sheets, research papers, and handbooks. Many of these items are available on this site, and will be helpful to health care professionals and those who might have a friend or loved one living with PTSD. Persons with a scholarly interest in PTSD may wish to utilize the PILOTS Database, which is the largest interdisciplinary index to the worldwide literature on traumatic stress. The Facts area is quite good as well, as it contains a number of fact sheets and how PTSD is most effectively treated. [KMG]

Deadly Medicine: Creating the Master Race [Macromedia Flash Player]

Over its twelve-year history, the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum has certainly never avoided tackling immensely controversial and important subjects, and this latest online feature is certainly no exception to this trend. Designed to complement a current exhibition at the Museum, this site looks at the ways in which the Nazi regime attempted to transform the genetic makeup of the population through the use of eugenics. Legitimized by numerous trained scientists, these ideas surrounding racial hygiene were tested through experiments on imperfect human beings who were perceived as biological threats. Within the site, visitors can view a video introduction by the Museums curator, Dr. Susan Bachrach, and a number of rather interesting video testimonies on the subjects of genetics and eugenics by various experts. Additionally, visitors can also view profiles of the physicians and scientists involved in these activities. It should be noted that there is a remark on the sites homepage that states that the exhibition is recommended for visitors of 11 years and older.

International Quilt Study Center

The world has many great textile traditions, and the art and practice of quilt-making is certainly one of them. The International Quilt Study Center (IQSC) was founded in 1997 at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln with the kind assistance of Ardis and Robert James, who donated 900 quilts. Since then, the Center has grown to include research symposia, a graduate program in textile history, and numerous online resources. Visitors may want to search the quilt collection online through their helpful search engine. Users can search by primary pattern, quilt title, quilt maker, country of origin, and predominant technique. One very interesting feature of the site is the Quilt of the Month area, where visitors can learn about some of the Centers most unique quilts, such as the Chicken Ribbons Quilt from 1913, which features blocks of blue, red, and white silver printed ribbons. [KMG]

Poetry Out Loud [Quick Time]

James Earl Jones credited a love of poetry for helping him overcome a problem with stuttering, and many others have spoken to a great love for the power of reading verse aloud. The National Endowment for the Arts and The Poetry Foundation are encouraging high school students to memorize and perform great poems through the Poetry Out Loud initiative. While the program is intended for high school students, the general poetry-loving browser will find much of interest on the site. Visitors to the site can look through through dozens of poems that are part of the initiative, and also listen to a number of the poems being read by such personages as Anthony Hopkins and Angela Lansbury. The site is rounded out by press releases about the initiative and a guide for teachers. [KMG]

General Interest


Founded in 1957 as the Association Internationale Du Film DAnimation (ASIFA), this organization is devoted to the encouragement and dissemination of film animation as an art and communication form. Not surprisingly, the ASIFA branch in Hollywood has a particularly keen interest in preserving film animation of all stripes and their website has hosts of compelling information about their work and related activities. Visitors may wish to start their exploration of the site by looking through the Annie Awards section of the site. This area details the past (and current) winners of these film animation awards since their inception in 1972. There is, of course, copious information about upcoming animation releases along with a number of helpful links to like-minded sites. Finally, all visitors should take a look at the ASIFA-Hollywood Animation Archive offered here. Organized as a blog, the site contains image galleries of the work of such animators as Ernesto Garcia Cabral and others. [KMG]

Framing Canada: A Photographic Memory

Culled from over 22 million images in the holdings of Library and Archives Canada (LAC), the Framing Canada web site "presents a searchable database of digitized photographic images from 1843 to the mid-20th century" that illustrates the history of photography in Canada. Within the Photographic Collections section of this site, the Introduction subsection is the most complete. Included in this section are views of Canadian businesses, such as the ruins of the Molson brewery after a fire in 1858. Also included are newsworthy scenes of domestic life, such as the Dionne Quintuplets photographed in bed with their mother in 1934. Eventually a series of thematic essays will be available, with such topics as Nation Building, The Canadian Mosaic, Portraiture, and Aboriginal Peoples. A glossary of photographic terms is also being built; already including examples of a cyanotype, Carte-de-visite, and hand-colored glass lantern slide. [DS]

The Fall of Enron [pdf]

The very mention of Enron is enough to make some people rather upset, and in some circles, it is probably best not to bring up the name of this corporation at all. But, with an eye towards informing the public, the Houston Chronicle has taken on this thorny topic by creating this rather comprehensive and intelligent look at the fall of this once-mighty corporation. On the site, visitors can learn about the events leading up to the companys downfall through a timeline of events and past news stories created by staff members at the newspaper. The site also contains a tremendous amount of material on the current trial of Enron executives Kenneth Lay and Jeff Skilling. Coverage includes blogs containing observations from noted attorneys, transcripts of court documents and testimony, as well as photo galleries. [KMG]

The Mountaineers Collection [Macromedia Flash Player]

With an eye towards conservation and documentation, The Mountaineers outdoor club has been in existence since 1906. Since that time, the group has been actively engaged in and around the Pacific Northwests many wilderness areas in a variety of capacities. Recently, the University of Washington Libraries Digital Collections project saw fit to digitize some of their extensive photographic collections. The result is this fine online archive which contains delightful documentation of some of their early expeditions, such as a 1912 trek to Mount Rainier and a 1951 sojourn to Mount Olympus in the Olympic Mountain range. The site also includes a detailed map of their 1920 outing to Mount Olympus and an introductory essay about the history of the organization. Finally, the site also contains 28 bulletins from the organizations history that document some of their outings and mountaineering accomplishments. [KMG]

European Training Foundation [pdf]

Working in conjunction with a host of other inter-governmental agencies, the European Training Foundation (ETF) is committed to developing a range of quality of education and training systems across Europe and into Asia. First-time visitors to the site will want to take a look at their About the ETF area to learn more about their mission, and then proceed to the Themes area, which contains basic information about their work in such areas as adult learning and online education. As might be expected from such an organization, their publications area is a real treasure-trove for policy analysts and others, as it contains works on best practices and overviews of educational systems throughout the region. In keeping with the strong emphasis place on vocational education, the site also contains a number of related events and conferences that will be of great interest as well. [KMG]

Wisconsin Magazine of History

It is certainly not uncommon for state historical societies to have publications dedicated to promulgating their states various historical eras, events, and happenstances. Wisconsin is no exception to this rule, and the Wisconsin Magazine of History (published under the direction of the Wisconsin Historical Society) is quite a joy to examine, both online and in print. First published in 1917, the magazine was significantly redesigned in 2000, and continues to publish a wide variety of articles on the states history. On this site, visitors can browse all of the issues since 2000, and also take a look at some favorites from the editors. Some of these articles include A Winter in Wisconsin by Francis Hackett and an account of early motoring throughout the state by Dorothy V. Walters titled Devil-Wagon Days. [KMG]

Network Tools

iDailyDiary 3.2

With diaries and memoirs constantly in the news these days, some of our readers may wish to compose their own thoughts electronically. This helpful program will help them do just that, as it has a number of useful features, including customizable fonts, image-insertion, and text highlighting. Of course, users can also keep their thoughts to themselves by using a password feature offered within. This version of iDailyDiary 3.2 is compatible with all computers running Windows 95 or newer. [KMG]

Ochiba 1.1

Many photographs were meant to be shared, whether it is with your cubicle-mate or with a friend living across the country. Near or far, Ochiba 1.1 will be of great assistance to those persons seeking to create interesting web-based image galleries quickly and with little fuss. The program contains a number of special features, including RSS feeds for image categories and spam prevention. [KMG]

In The News

Computer Analysis of Paintings Raises Questions

Computer Analysis Suggests Paintings Are Not Pollocks

UO study questions paintings authenticity

Fractals and art: In the hands of a master

Jackson Pollock

Richard Taylor: Further Information [pdf]

Unpopular Front: American Art and the Cold War

Robert Hughes, the venerable art critic for Time magazine, stated in 1982 It is impossible to make a forgery of Jackson Pollocks work. It is certainly true that the physicality of his paintings, along with Pollocks famed pour technique was forward-looking for its time. Given this information, it is not surprising that previously unknown works by Pollock that materialize draw close scrutiny from art historians, and increasingly, scientists. This week, the New York Times reported that Professor Richard Taylor of the University of Oregon had utilized fractal geometry to examine 14 of Pollocks painting to help determine, and perhaps put into question, the authenticity of a cache of paintings found in 2003 in Wainscott, New York. This cache of paintings was discovered by Alex Matter, whose parents were friends with Pollock. Currently, Matter is planning a large exhibition of these newly discovered works, and this growing controversy has been closely followed among those in the art world. Dr. Taylor has remarked that his examination of the works has revealed significant differences between the patterns of these newer works and those of known Pollock works. He also mentioned that Thats either due to one person who is extremely varied, or its due to a number of different artists. [KMG]

The first link will take visitors to a piece from this Thursdays New York Times, which discusses the recent computer analysis of the paintings. The second link will whisk visitors away to a fine article by The Oregonians Richard L. Hill that discusses Dr. Taylors findings and the rising tide of controversy surrounding these works. The third link will lead users to an intriguing piece from the magazine, Nature, which explores the science behind Dr. Taylors investigations and Pollocks idiosyncratic style and manner. The fourth link leads to a National Gallery of Art web exhibition on Pollock and his work that begins with a rather intense photograph of Pollock holding a cigarette to his forehead. The fifth link leads to Dr. Taylors homepage at the University of Oregon, where users may read some of his compelling articles and other writings on his analyses of Pollocks work through the use of fractal geometry. The sixth and final link leads to a piece by Louis Menand, writing in The New Yorker on the subject of American art and its function and ideology during the Cold War. [KMG]

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