The Scout Report -- Volume 16, Number 2

January 15, 2010

A Publication of Internet Scout
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

The Promise and Peril of Big Data [pdf]

Some data-crunchers and others are thrilled by the prospect of the growing amount of "big data". According to a recent report, the amount of digital content available on the Internet is approaching five hundred billion gigabytes. This 66-page report from the Aspen Institute asks some key questions about these developments, including "Does Big Data represent an evolution of knowledge, or is more actually less when it comes to information on such scales?" Released in January 2010, this report is based on insights from the recent Aspen Institute Communications and Society Program, which brought together 25 leaders from the fields of technology, economics, and public policy. The report was written by David Bollier, and it includes sections like "Big Data and Health Care", "How Should Big Data Abuses Be Addressed?" and "Business and Social Implications of Big Data". It's an important read, and one that visitors with an interest in any of these fields will want to pass along to their friends. [KMG]

To find this resource and more high-quality online resources in math and science visit Scout's sister site - AMSER, the Applied Math and Science Educational Repository at

Conference on Historical Analysis and Research in Marketing Proceedings [pdf]

Recently, the Conference on Historical Analysis and Research in Marketing (CHARM) decided to digitize their annual proceedings. They have placed them online here, and scholars in this field and others will enjoy wandering through past issues. The conference is held biennially, and visitors can start things off by looking over the first volume, which was published in 1983. Articles from this first meeting include "Cultural Materialism: The Role of Goods and Societal Symbolism As Research in Marketing" and "A Note on the Varieties and Vagaries of Historical Data". Visitors are also able to search the contents by keyword or author. Taken as a whole, this archive allows users to track changes in the field of marketing and its study as a historical subject. [KMG]

Science Oxford Online

Bolstered by a polar clock in the upper-right hand corner and a collection of intriguing images, the Science Oxford Online website is sure to draw interested parties in with a few clicks of the mouse. The site was originally launched in 2009, and the aim of the site is to give members of the general public "a feel for new research and get some ideas about how science theories of today might create tomorrow's commercial products." On the homepage, visitors are presented with a grid of fifteen different images. Scrolling over these images reveals tags like "What Do Atheists Believe?" and "The Very Strange Properties of Cornstarch". Clicking on each of these links brings up a variety of media, including articles, press releases, video lectures, and so on. Visitors can also search the entire site, or use the "Filter Content" tab to find materials on biology, technology, weather, and other topical matters. [KMG]

To find this resource and more high-quality online resources in math and science visit Scout's sister site - AMSER, the Applied Math and Science Educational Repository at

Journal of Aesthetics & Culture [pdf]

Started in 2009, the Journal of Aesthetics & Culture (JAC) is an open-access journal "that aims to develop inter-disciplinary theoretical models as applied to human science research on aesthetic questions." The JAC has assembled an editorial board of scholars from across the world, including experts from New York University, Lund University, and the University of Bergen. On their website, visitors can read over the author guidelines, sign up for e-alerts, peruse the journal's announcements, and view the latest peer-reviewed article. Their first volume, published in 2009, included the articles "Calling on Witnesses: testimony and the deictic" and "Confronting The Wind: a reading of a Hollywood film by Victor Sjstrm". [KMG]

Strategic Studies Institute: United States Army War College [pdf]

The Strategic Studies Institute (SSI) is "the U.S. Army's institute for geostrategic and national security research and analysis." The Institute's staff includes research professors, military officers, and a variety of support staff affiliates. SSI's publications are distributed widely to strategic leaders across the Department of Defense, the media, and major colleges and universities. Visitors to their website will find topical sections prominently featured, and they include "Regional Issues", "Strategic Issues", and "Featured Papers". New visitors will want to breeze through the "Featured Papers" to get a sense of their work. Recently, this area has featured timely white papers and research briefs like "An All Hazards Training Center for a Catastrophic Emergency" and "India's Strategic Defense Transformation: Expanding Global Relationships". Moving on, visitors can sort through the "Strategic Issues" section as they see fit. Here they will find timely commentary on matters that include landpower sustainment, military change, and homeland security. [KMG]

NASA eClips

Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) are the focus of this fantastic website by NASA. It's a teaching tool that utilizes video segments to provide flexibility and inspiration for those teaching STEM-related topics to grades K-5, 6-8 and 9-12. Additionally, many of the advanced grade segments are appropriate for introductory college level courses in these areas. Launchpad is the name given to the lessons for 9-12th graders, and visitors can access it by clicking on the link entitled "Launchpad Grades 9-12" in the menu on the left hand side of the homepage. A listing of some of the video content for Launchpad is given, which includes "Aeronautics", "Communications & Launch", and "Living in Space". Visitors can click on the listings to access the videos, as well teacher guides. For those visitors who are no longer in the classroom, but still want to learn about space via engaging videos can check out "NASA 360 For Public" on the left hand menu on the homepage. There is a series of a dozen videos to play online or download which address such topics as "NASA in Your Home", "NASA and Pro Athletes", and "Exploration and Racing". [KMG]

To find this resource and more high-quality online resources in math and science visit Scout's sister site - AMSER, the Applied Math and Science Educational Repository at

Writing Guidelines for Engineering and Science Students

Penn State University provides a great web resource for all engineering and science students with the models, exercises, and advice that it gives for over a half dozen type of documents they will likely encounter in their schooling and eventual professions. On the left hand side of the homepage visitors will find "Student Resources", "Instructor Resources", and links to the "Contributors", which include "Virginia Tech", "University of Illinois", and "Georgia Tech". The "Introduction" on the homepage, offers the following basics to consider when starting a paper: "Assessing the Audience", "Selecting the Format", and "Crafting the Style". Also on the homepage the site gives links to guidance on "Presentations", "Correspondence", "Formal Reports", "Proposals", "Instructions", and "Journal Articles". The "Design of Presentation Slides", under the "Presentations" link, demonstrates the use of the assertion-evidence structure for presentation slides, as opposed to the typical PowerPoint template, along with many resources on the left hand side of the page that tout the benefits of that structure. [KMG]

To find this resource and more high-quality online resources in math and science visit Scout's sister site - AMSER, the Applied Math and Science Educational Repository at

U.S. Drought Portal

The National Integrated Drought Information System was signed into existence in 2006 by President George W. Bush, and it aims to provide guidance in preparing for drought in the 21st century. This official U.S. government web portal is loaded with colorful maps, charts and graphs, and that's just on the homepage. The "U.S. Drought Monitor" is a map on the homepage with the intensity of the drought conditions indicated by color, from abnormally dry to drought - exceptional. On the same map there are links to the answers to the following queries: "Where are Drought Conditions Now?", "How is the Drought Affecting Me?", and "Will the Drought Continue?" The "Education" link on the menu across the top of the page leads visitors to "Drought for General Audiences" and "Drought for K-12 and Above". Visitors interested in helping monitor precipitation in their own communities should check out CoCoRaHS, which is the "Community Collaborative Rain, Hail, and Snow Network". The link to that organization is provided in the "Drought for General Audiences" section. [KMG]

To find this resource and more high-quality online resources in math and science visit Scout's sister site - AMSER, the Applied Math and Science Educational Repository at

General Interest

May 4 Collection

The shock, anger, and sadness that the world felt when four students were killed by the National Guard during a 1970 war protest on the campus of Kent State University in Ohio will hopefully never be repeated. For researchers, students, faculty, staff, and members of the community, the memories of that tragedy, both written and recorded, have been compiled by the Department of Special Collections and Archives of Kent State University. The May 4 Collection has its own website, which is comprised of such links as a table of "Contents", "Index", "Exhibits/Chronologies", "Oral History Project", and "History Day Help". The "May 4 Collection Contents" reveals that there are 211 boxes of papers, records, newspaper articles, photographs, radio recordings, and comic strips that constitute the May 4 Collection. The "Oral History Project" link explains the ongoing project of recording "first-person narratives and personal reactions to the events of May 4, 1970." It aims to record narratives of all viewpoints of those "whose lives were affected by these historical events." [KMG]

Bonhams Magazine

Visitors unfamiliar with Bonhams Magazine can get an excellent overview of its origins, in the "About Bonhams" link at the bottom of the homepage. Bonhams "is the world's oldest and largest auctioneer of fine art and antiques still in British ownership." The archive of Bonhams Magazine available on this website goes back to the winter issue of 2007. Art historians, historians, and archaeologists will find fascinating articles in the aforementioned issue on craftsman Matthew Boulton, the mystery of the Bront children, centuries-old dog collars, and the curse of Tutankhamun. Visitors will appreciate the photographs of the artworks and antiques, as they are very vivid and show great detail. The winter 2009 issue will delight Dr. Who fans, with its article entitled "Who's in Town". In the article entitled "Femme Fatale", Ian Irvine analyzes the role women played in the life of painter Willem de Kooning, by looking at a series of his figurative paintings. [KMG]

Ringling Collection: Images of 19th Century Actors and Actresses

The Belknap Collection for the Performing Arts on the University of Florida Gainesville campus contains the Ringling Collection of postcards, photographs, and cabinet cards of male and female actors of America and Britain from the 19th century. Luckily, those visitors unable to make it to the warmer climes of Florida, can view the over 3700 images from the Collection that have been digitized for anyone, no matter their geographic location. Visitors can start browsing the collection by "Performers", "Themes", or "All Items". Once a category is chosen, visitors can then choose how they would like to view the images, such as "Table View", which just shows a rather compact list of titles of the image. "Thumbnail View" offers smaller versions of the image, along with the title, in a grid format. The "Themes" category can be fun for visitors to look at, with such themes as "Caricatures", "Baldness", "Cross Dressing", and "Urban Life". The "Advanced Search" link on the homepage gives visitors instructions on "Boolean Searching", "Phrase Searching", and "Diacritics". [KMG]

The Lincoln Log

What exactly was Abraham Lincoln doing on June 11, 1850? As it turns out, he was writing a letter to one Nathaniel Hay, describing the details of a potential home-improvement project. If you're looking for more details on Lincoln's daily doings, click on over to The Lincoln Log. The information on the site was compiled by the Lincoln Sesquicentennial Commission, and in 2003, the materials were redesigned by the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Visitors to the site can find out what Lincoln was doing on a particular day by using the drop-down menus on the homepage, and they can also browse by year or click on the "Today's Date in Lincoln's Life" section. Also, visitors can use the "Browse New Entries" to look over newly added materials. [KMG]


What would a visual graphical dictionary look like? The Visuwords website gives expression to such a concept, and it does so by producing diagrams reminiscent of a neural net. Upon entering the site, visitors will be presented with a random word, complete with various "connections". On the left-hand of the page, visitors can learn about the different coded connections which indicate relationships such as "is a part of" or "opposes" and parts of speech, such as "nouns", "verbs", or "adverbs". Of course, visitors are encouraged to type in their own word into the search query at the top of the page. Additionally, the homepage contains some basic information about how to read these various graphical representations and how to most effectively use the interface system. [KMG]

Princeton University Library Digital Collections: Lorenzo Homar Collection

Born in San Juan, Lorenzo Homar is arguably Puerto Rico's greatest graphic artist. He passed away in 2004, and his career included his work with the Puerto Rican Arts Center (which he helped found), the House of Cartier, and a broad range of posters and drawings. This excellent digital collection from the Princeton University Library includes many of these works, including a sketchbook from his days in the U.S. Army, a host of caricatures, and over 90 posters. Getting started here is easy, and visitors can just click on the "page images" button to begin their journey. Visitors can use the "Show" tab to look through the images from the sketchbook and other items, and they can also use a set of navigation buttons to make their way through the collection. [KMG]

The History of Kentucky's Community Colleges Oral History Project;page=simple

Funded by a grant from the Kentucky Community and Technical College System, this arresting collection of oral histories traces the creation and development of the community college system throughout Kentucky. The collection is part of the Kentuckiana Digital Library and there are over 30 interviews here for each college in the state. Conducted between 2006 and 2008, the interviewees include administrators, faculty, staff, and students. Visitors can browse at their leisure, search the interviews by community college, or perform a keyword search. Each interview comes complete with background information on each subject, along with a complete transcript and audio recording of the interview. Overall, anyone with an interest in higher education or Kentucky will find this collection quite valuable. [KMG]

Graphic Masters II: American Art

Escape from your daily desktop concerns with this exhibition from the Smithsonian, featuring watercolors, pastels, and drawings by artists such as Edward Hopper, Stuart Davis, William H. Johnson, John Steuart Curry, Jacob Lawrence, and Sam Francis. From a 1937 black & white, pen and ink, drawing by Isabel Bishop showing a man playing cards, to a 1951 abstract by David Smith that suggests a tropical jungle in vibrant green and yellow, to Andrew Wyeth's watercolor representation of a field in winter, November 1st, 1950, there are bound to be at least a few places and things you have never seen on your computer before. There's also a Stuart Davis' bright watercolor, Abstraction, 1937; a conte crayon self portrait by John Steuart Curry from 1928, and Edward Hopper's landscape, White River at Sharon, 1937 - around forty new vistas in all. [DS]

Network Tools

WeatherBug 7.02

Whether it's flooding down in Texas or balmy in Birmingham, WeatherBug 7.02 can keep you abreast of a multitude of meteorological situations. This program runs in the system tray, and a quick double-click brings up the latest temperature, wind, and humidity. While the program only covers the United States, it's still a reliable and non-intrusive way to stay on top of weather conditions. This version is compatible with computers running Windows 95 and newer. [KMG]

SeaMonkey 2.0.2

Designed as an "all-in-one" Internet application, the SeaMonkey application contains a browser, an image manager, junk mail controls, a RSS feed manager, and a HTML editor. Of course, these are but a few of its many features, and visitors can also weave their way through the application's homepage to view release notes, screenshots, and a complete list of its features. This version of SeaMonkey is compatible with computers running Windows 2000, XP, and Vista or Mac OS X 10.4 and newer. [KMG]

In The News

New ways of presenting Native American art on display in Kansas City

Elevating American Indian Art

A native sensibility to Autry exhibition,0,2450901.story

Priest's pop art challenges contemporary stereotypes, recalls church history

The Art of Native American Basketry: A Living Tradition

National Museum of the American Indian


For decades, the presentation of Native American art has presented a set of complex difficulties for curators in museums around the world. Should items like totem poles be presented as solely ethnographic artifacts, or rather contextualized as pieces of art? Institutions like the National Museum of the American Indian place most of the focus on the importance of these objects to their respective original communities. In the Wall Street Journal this Tuesday, cultural commentator and writer Lee Rosenbaum reported on a new suite of galleries at the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art in Kansas City, Missouri that may signal a new era of museum display for such items. In an interview, museum director Marc Wilson noted that his goal "was to finally do away with the prejudices and stereotypes that color the way people look at American Indian art." Organized by geographical area, the setting for these works is quite masterful with a number of dramatic vistas incorporated into the space. Now as visitors enter the museum's masterworks section, they will find Native American art objects along aside those of John Singer Sargent, Thomas Hart Benton, and John Singleton Copley. [KMG]

The first link will take visitors the aforementioned piece by Lee Rosenbaum which appeared in this Tuesday's Wall Street Journal. The second link will whisk users away to a great piece from the Los Angeles Times which talks about a new display of traditional Native American baskets at the Autry Museum of the American West. The third link leads to a news article from last week's Episcopal Life Online which talks about the art of Reverend Robert Two Bulls and other contemporary Native American artists. Moving on, the fourth link leads to the homepage of the current Native American basketry exhibit at the Autry National Center. Here visitors can watch a short video about the works in the exhibit and also learn more about the museum. The fifth link leads to the homepage of the National Museum of the American Indian, which has branches in Washington, D.C. and New York City. The final link leads to the homepage of Lee Rosenbaum, and it's a great way to stay up to date with issues surrounding museums, cultural presentations, and so on.

Below are the copyright statements to be included when reproducing annotations from The Scout Report.

The single phrase below is the copyright notice to be used when reproducing any portion of this report, in any format:

From The Scout Report, Copyright Internet Scout 1994-2010.

The paragraph below is the copyright notice to be used when reproducing the entire report, in any format:

Copyright Internet Scout, 1994-2010. Internet Scout (, 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.

Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this publication are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, or the National Science Foundation.

The Scout Report (ISSN 1092-3861) is published weekly by Internet Scout

Internet Scout Team
Max GrinnellEditor
Chanda HaldermanManaging Editor
Edward AlmasyCo-Director
Rachael BowerCo-Director
Andrea CoffinMetadata Specialist
Clay CollinsInternet Cataloger
Emily SchearerInternet Cataloger
Tim BaumgardWeb Developer
Kyle MannaTechnical Specialist
Benjamin YuleTechnical Specialist
Lesley Skousen-ChioAdministrative Support
Debra ShapiroContributor

For information on additional contributors, see the Internet Scout staff page.