The Scout Report -- Volume 16, Number 40

October 8, 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

National Resources Inventory Map Room

The Natural Resources Conservation Service provides a range of documents and materials to stakeholders from the private sector, government agencies, journalists, and scholars. One of their projects is the National Resources Inventory (NRI), which produces maps and charts based on their surveys. On this site, visitors can look over these documents, which are divided into eleven different themes, including "Soil Erosion", "Wetlands", and "Land Capability". Each thematic area contains several dozen maps, and a brief description of what each map illustrates. Much of the data is static, and derived from historical data from the late 20th century, but that doesn't detract from their relevance or usability. The site is rounded out by a "Help" area, and information on some of their other resources. [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

"Once You Enter, You Never Leave": Deinstitutionalization of Persons with Intellectual or Mental Disabilities in Croatia [pdf]

Resources for people suffering from intellectual or mental disabilities are in short supply throughout most of the world. The Human Rights Watch organization released this 74-page report in September 2010, and it addresses the plight of the thousands of people with such disabilities living in Croatia. The report is based on interviews conducted by the Human Rights Watch in November and December 2009, along with additional research that continued through July 2010. Researchers visited a total of nine institutions in seven regions of Croatia, and the institutions were selected based on geographical diversity and type of institution. Those who read the report will learn about some troubling findings, including the fact that that while the country has over 4000 people with mental disabilities, there are only seven people in supportive community living programs. The report is divided into six separate chapters, including the final chapter which includes a host of recommendations and a section on the existing institutional framework in the country. [KMG]

The Next Economy: Economic Recovery and Transformation in the Great Lakes Region [pdf]

The good folks at the Brookings Institution continue to offer viable and timely public policy suggestions and commentary on America's urban areas through their Metropolitan Policy Program. This recent offering is a set of timely research briefs which address the economic transformation of the Great Lakes region. Before reading the briefs, visitors should look over the introductory essay on the site. After taking in this overview, visitors can read seven policy briefs, including "Strengthening American Manufacturing: A New Federal Approach" and "The Federal Role in Leveraging America's Community Colleges". These materials will be of great interest to urban policy makers and others who are concerned about this important region's future. [KMG]

The Life of a City: Early Films of New York, 1898-1906

What did New York look like in the late 19th century? Obviously it was a bustling and energetic place, but what were some of its key characteristics? We can tell a bit about it from first-hand narratives, photographs, and maps, but it's also useful to know that there were some intriguing films made around the Big Apple during this time. This marvelous collection from the Library of Congress's American Memory Project brings together 45 films of New York from 1896 to 1906. The films were made by the American Mutoscope and Biography Company and the Edison Company. Before diving into the films, visitors should look over the short essays in the "Understanding the Collection" area. Here they can read up on "America at the Turn of the Century" and "Pioneer Cameraman" to garner some context for understanding these unique items. In these films, visitors will find clips of Battery Park, Broadway, early automobiles, and policemen. [KMG]

Aboriginal Documentary Heritage

This Libraries and Archives Canada "web exhibition recounts first-hand information illustrating the complex and often contentious relationship between the Canadian government and Canada's Aboriginal people from the late 1700s to the mid-20th century." Visitors interested in reading about the importance and meaning of these documentary resources to the aboriginal people, should read the link on the left side menu entitled: "The Resources from an Aboriginal Perspective". Visitors unfamiliar with the current and historical vocabulary used regarding Aboriginal people should refer to the "Glossary" on the left side menu to learn the definitions of such words as "band", "Mtis", "Indian Act", and "First Nation". The "Treaties, Surrenders and Agreements" link contains the following sections: "Essay", "Gallery" and "Database". The Gallery contains images of original treaties that, among other things, ceded vast amounts of land to Canada. Visitors can view one of the treaties that ceded the land of southwestern Ontario north of Lake Erie which originally was part of the Aboriginal people's territory. [KMG]

Illuminated Manuscripts from Belgium and the Netherlands

The John Paul Getty Museum has a wonderful two part digitized exhibition of illuminated manuscripts from the twelfth to the sixteenth centuries. These manuscripts are from the Netherlands and Belgium which were important centers of manuscript production and they "were created for an international clientele of princes, dukes, cardinals, bishops, and wealthy burghers." The exhibition offers visitors high quality images, as well as audio clips by the museum curators about specific manuscripts. Also, there is an audio clip about "The Visions of the Knight Tondal" narrated by the Los Angeles Times' film critic, Kenneth Turan. There are two PDFs of illustrated checklists for each installation, where visitors can read a description of each of the works, view images, and click on hyperlinks that lead to sections of the digitized exhibition on the website. The "Publications" link offers two titles for those visitors interested in learning more. One of the publications is by one of the curators of the exhibit, and the other is a guide to technical terms that are associated with illuminated manuscripts. [KMG]

Illinois State Geological Survey [pdf]

Based at the University of Illinois-Urbana Champaign (UIUC), the Illinois State Geological Survey's mission is to "provide the citizens and institutions of Illinois with earth science research and information." Their website includes research reports, technical publications, downloadable maps, and hazard response information. The "Publications" area is definitely worth a look, as visitors can review the latest geological and hydrological maps, and also search their back catalog of material. More casual visitors to the site will want to click on the "Education Outreach" area. Here they will find a glossary of terms, the "Ask an Expert" feature, teacher resources, and information on public field trips led by members of the Survey. The site is rounded out by a gallery of images and a helpful site map. [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

Portsmouth and Macclesfield Collections

As one of the great scientific minds in human history, Sir Isaac Newton offered thoughtful meditations and explorations on gravitation, calculus, optics, chemistry, and comets. His range of intellectual interests was vast, and this online collection brings together some of his most potent writings and ideas. These materials are part of the Portsmouth and Macclesfield Collections held at the Cambridge University Library, and visitors with a scientific bent will appreciate their availability. The documents here include holograph letters to and from Newton's contemporaries, such as Cavendish, Fermat, Halley, Boyle, and others. Also, visitors can make their way through Newton's primary writings, which are primarily contained within the Macclesfield Collection. On the homepage, visitor can use a drop-down menu to browse the documents by author, date, or language. [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

Federal Bureau of Investigation: White Collar Crime and Fraud [pdf]

The term "white-collar crime" was reportedly coined in 1939 by Professor Edwin Sutherland, and today it can refer to anything from elaborate health care frauds to government contracting scams. The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has a keen eye in tracking such matters, and this website provides ample information on their activities. The first thing visitors should check out is the "Don't Be Cheated" area. Here visitors can take a test of their fraud awareness and also learn about common frauds. Moving along, the site also contains a "Quick Facts" area, and a section of "Interesting Cases". For journalists, the "Cases in the News" area will be particularly noteworthy, as they feature links to recent white-collar crime cases from around the country. The site is rounded out by the "Get Our News" area, where visitors can sign up for their RSS feed and email updates. [KMG]

FSU Historical Images

The past few years have seen a dramatic increase in digital collections based at Florida State University, and this is in no small part due to a strong push from a number of leaders within the institution's library system. This particular digital collection brings together over 2300 images that tell the story of the Florida State University campus, its history, traditions, and people. The site doesn't have any topical sections, but visitors will find that using the archive is quite simple. Here visitors can create their own collection (after a quick registration) to save for later use and consultation. One area that is well-covered here is building interiors, and it's easy to use the search engine to look for buildings and activities of interest. [KMG]

Montana Place Names Companion

Billed as covering everything from "Alzada to Zortman", the Montana Place Names Companion website tells the story of Montana's place names. The project began years ago at the reference desk at the Montana Historical Society Research Center in Helena when a patron called about the origin of a mountain peak name. Over the years, a team of dedicated individuals began to compile thousands of pieces of information about cities, rivers, and mountains across the Big Sky state. Now all of this material can be found here, courtesy of the National Resource Information System at the Montana State Library. Visitors can select a place name from the drop-down menu, type in a keyword, or click on the interactive map of the state. First-time visitors may wish to start by looking at Absarokee, Porcupine Butte, and Swimming Woman Creek. [KMG]

European Economic and Social Committee

The European Economic and Social Committee (EESC) is a "consultative body of the European Union." The EESC is meant to serve as "a bridge between European and organized civil society", and their work includes networking with other governmental organization, adopting policy resolutions and suggestions, and researching energy issues, among other things. The materials on the site are divided into seven primary sections, including "Documents", "Themes", and "Events & Activities". A good place to get started is the "Themes" area, which features information about their recent activities in areas like civil society, consumers, economics, and agriculture and environment. Along the left-side of this page, visitors can look at the latest events and conferences related to each separate theme. Moving along, the "Documents" area includes opinion pieces and working papers such as "EU-Canada Relations" and "Higher Education and Entrepreneurship". Lastly, the "Press & Media" area includes videos, interviews, and photo galleries. [KMG]

International Day of Non-Violence

The International Day of Non-Violence is October 2nd, which coincides with Mahatma Gandhi's birthday. The Day was established by a United Nations resolution in 2007, and has the goal to "disseminate the message of non-violence, including through education and public awareness." Visitors to the U.N. website can go to the "Background" link to read a brief summary of Gandhi's philosophy, as well as the definition of non-violence, which includes the three main categories of non-violent action: "protest and persuasion, including marches and vigils", "non-cooperation", and "non-violent intervention, such as blockades and occupations". Visitors interested in reading how the International Day of Non-Violence has been commemorated since 2007 should click on the "Commemoration" link on the left side menu. The 2009 commemoration involved the production of a $1.00 United Nations Postal Administration definitive stamp; visitors can see the colorful stamp featuring Gandhi by clicking on "commemorative stamp". Finally those who are interested in other U.N. days of observance should click on the "U.N. Observances" link at the bottom of the left side menu. [KMG]

Stray Dogs: Danijel Zezelj [Flash Player]

The website of the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston has a digitized version of its contemporary exhibition, from several years ago, that featured the drawings of graphic novelist Danijel Zezelj. The digital exhibition provides a written excerpt of an informative "Interview" with the artist by the curator of the exhibit, and visitors can find the interview under the "Artist Biography" link. To view the exhibition, visitors should click on the "Enter the Exhibition" link, which contains the drawings from the graphic novel "Stray Dogs", but without the accompanying text found in the novel. Each page is an artwork in itself, and contains several seemingly separate drawings per page. The beautiful drawings sometimes resemble paintings or lithographs, with their large swaths of ink. The "Exhibition Details" link is an interesting peek inside the business of lending out a museum exhibit, and visitors will find the criteria for borrowing the work including: the space requirements of the exhibition, the required color of the walls (Autumn Purple by Benjamin Moore), the cost to borrow it from the museum, the cost of multimedia performances related to the exhibit, and the cost of an artist talk. [KMG]

Mackinac Center [pdf]

Based in Midland, Michigan, the Mackinac Center for Public Policy is a "nonpartisan research and educational institute dedicated to improving the quality of life for all Michigan citizens by promoting sound solutions to state and local policy questions." Visitors to their website can read their blog, check out some of their publications, and also learn about some of their key topical interests. Most of their work focuses on economic policy matters, and visitors can get a sense of their viewpoints by clicking on the "Periodicals & Projects" area. The "In the Spotlight" area includes recent items of note, and recently they have featured pieces on charter schools, tax credits, and distance learning. Visitors are also encouraged to sign up to receive the Center's email updates and other materials. [KMG]

MoMA - Counter Space: Design + the Modern Kitchen

Counter Space: Design + the Modern Kitchen, from New York's Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) takes a look at 20th century kitchen design, from a 21st century perspective. The introduction states, "Over the course of the past century no other room has been the focus of such intensive aesthetic and technological innovation, or as loaded with cultural significance." The first two sections of the show, the new kitchen, and the Frankfurt kitchen, feature examples of modern kitchens and kitchen equipment dating from just after World War I through the 1930s. A highlight of the new kitchen is a short film made in 1927 by the Electric League of Pittsburgh, "Buy an Electric Refrigerator". The Frankfurt kitchen was designed by Grete Schtte-Lihotzky, and this section of the online exhibition includes an animated and musical tribute by Robert Rotifer. The "visions of plenty" are looks at kitchens from about 1945 through 1970, during post World War II prosperity, particularly in the United States. Short films in this section include the titles "A Word to the Wives" and "Preparation of Food from Stone Age to Space Age". The section "Kitchen sink dramas" showcases kitchen-located art, such as William Eggleston's Memphis (a view of an oven interior), and Untitled, a freezer interior. Visit the exhibition blog to keep up on events related to Counter Space. [DS]

Network Tools

Zotero 2.0.8

Zotero is a helpful Firefox extension that can be used to help interested parties collect, manage, cite, and share research sources. With just a single click, visitors can browse research sources from their mobile phones, share their resources with other scholars, and also use the built-in citation styles. This latest version is compatible with computers running any operating system and the Firefox browser. [KMG]


So you are at the Spanish Steps in Rome and you want to tell people about your journey? And you want to do it right away? You'll need to look no further than Ipadio, which allows you to broadcast directly from any phone to the Internet. The program makes it easy to collect audio data, and send it out to the world quickly. Visitors to the site will note that this program is compatible with a variety of smart phones, including the Android and the iPhone. [KMG]

In The News

Deep below, a vibrant world is documented by the first comprehensive marine census

Marine Census Yields Plenitude of Wonders

Marine Census Shows Vast Diversity of Sea Life

Biggest Marine Census Complete

New Map Charts Troubled Status of Ocean Life

Census of Marine Life

NOAA National Marine Sanctuaries

What is out there, under the sea? After 10 years, it would appear that the Census of Marine Life has an excellent idea of the species residing throughout the world's oceans and seas. The project was sponsored by a host of institutions, including the Rockefeller University in New York, and the initial findings of this magnificent undertaking were announced this Monday. Commenting on the report, the co-founder of the project Jesse H. Ausubel remarked, "We're like the people in London and Paris 200 years ago, putting together the first dictionaries and encyclopedias." Equally amazing was the discovery that there are few "ocean deserts", and the census discovered a host of new species. The project reveals that there are almost 250,000 marine species in existence, and if microscopic life were included, that number could potentially land in the hundreds of millions. One particularly interesting new species found in the census was the so-called "yeti-crab". This denizen of the deep lives far off the coast of Easter Island, and it has rather elaborate furry claws. More discoveries and information from this project will be released in the coming weeks and months, and it's a project well worth keeping tabs on. [KMG]

The first link will take users to users to a post from the New York Times' "Green" blog from this Monday. Here visitors can learn a bit more about the census, and also view a photo of the "yeti-crab". The second link will take visitors to an article from this Tuesday's Wall Street Journal which includes a video clip about the census, along with an interactive graphic feature. Moving on, the third link whisks users away to another news feature from the National Geographic website about the completion of the census. The fourth link leads to a press release from Duke University, which features a link to a highly detailed and interactive map based on this census information. The fifth link leads to the census website where visitors can learn more about the findings, check out their video gallery, image gallery, and music video. Finally, the last link leads to a site developed by NOAA that features information about the National Marine Sanctuaries, including materials on how to visit these locations and some information on their management.

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