The Scout Report -- Volume 17, Number 3

January 21, 2011

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

A Note to our Readers

Research and Education

General Interest

Network Tools

In The News

A Note to our Readers

Internet Scout joins Twitter and Facebook

At long last, and after many requests from our readers, Internet Scout has joined both Facebook and Twitter. You can follow us on Twitter @IntScout and on Facebook by clicking on the link above or simply searching for Internet Scout on Facebook. We look forward to the increased interaction with our readers that these venues can provide, and we hope that our readers enjoy our Tweets and Status updates as much as they enjoy the Scout Report.

All the best,
Chanda Halderman
Managing Editor

Research and Education

Reducing Gun Violence: Results from an Intervention in East Los Angeles [pdf]

How does one solve violent crime in big cities? It's a vexing problem, and one that attracted the attention of a group of scholars at the RAND Corporation. This 82-page eBook released in 2010 takes a close look at how the Boston Gun Project might work if applied in East Los Angeles. In Boston, a coalition of researchers, community leaders, clergy, and others, worked together and designed, implemented, and monitored a project to reduce youth violence by reducing gang and gun violence. The program was quite successful, so this led the National Institute of Justice to work with RAND to see if this might work in Los Angeles. Specifically, the intervention included increased police presences, more stringent enforcement of housing codes for properties used by gang members, more stringent enforcement of parole and probation conditions, and referral of gun violations to federal prosecutors. While the program was somewhat successful when applied to this section of Los Angeles, the report recommends, "city leaders should establish processes to support agencies in such collaborations." Both a summary of the report and the eBook in its entirety are available for free download. [KMG]

Utah Digital Newspapers
Back in 2001, the J. Willard Marriott Library at the University of Utah received a Library Services and Technology grant to research and demonstrate a newspaper digitization project. Since that time, they have successfully partnered with Brigham Young University to digitize over 240,000 pages of historic newspapers from Utah's past. Currently, the archive includes issues from over 25 newspapers, including the Davis County Clipper, the Ephraim Enterprise, and the Salt Lake Herald. In the "Paper Timeline" area, visitors can look at a chart that details all of the currently available newspapers in the archive. After a quick look at that helpful document, visitors can browse the newspapers by county, or look over the "Recent Additions" listing. Also, visitors can view the Utah Newspaper Hall of Fame, which documents some of the state's most celebrated newspaper businesspeople. Sample searches to get visitors started might include "beehive", "Provo", and "Union Pacific". [KMG]

U.S. Department of Labor Compliance Assistance

What exactly is the U.S. Department of Labor's (DOL) Compliance Assistance program? The DOL's website states that compliance assistance helps "workers and employers [to] understand how their rights and responsibilities under federal employment laws...protect wages, health benefits, retirement security, employment rights, safety, and health of Americas workforce." Visitors to the site can find what they are looking for by topic, audience, and major law, by checking out the menu box on the far right side of the homepage. Also, those persons interested in receiving e-mail updates from the Compliance Assistance website can choose to receive DOL tools, press releases, education materials, and webpage updates, or they can choose to only subscribe to selected areas of the COL, such as their employment law guide and employment law advisors. The "Poster Advisor" link under "Compliance E-Tools" provides employers with the information needed, through a question and answer format, to determine which posters they need to have visible to employees, in order to be in compliance with state and federal departments of labor. Visitors will recognize the Minimum Wage Laws, Family Medical Leave Act, and OSHA posters as just a few of the posters provided under the DOL poster program. [KMG]

The International Center for Research on Women

The mission of the International Center for Research on Women (ICRW) is to "work with partners to conduct empirical research, build capacity and advocate for evidence-based, practical ways to change policies and programs." ICRW was formed in 1976 to address the gender inequality that international development efforts were upholding by not considering the value of women's income in supporting a household. On the websites homepage, visitors can find an excellent study entitled "Gender Equality: Indian Men's Attitudes Complex", that explains ICRW's findings that Indian men are highly conflicted about gender equality. For instance, Indian men feel affording women more rights will take away some of men's rights. The website also offers visitors a "What We Do" section, which explains how the ICRW works to empower women. These efforts include acknowledging the barriers women face, such as HIV, lack of education, violence and child marriage. In the "Where We Work" section, visitors can see a map that shows where their projects and offices are, and can also search for projects by region, status, country, or area of work. [KMG]

Not Even Past

William Faulkner once wrote, "The past is never dead. It's not even past." This quote forms the inspiration for the Not Even Past website, which was founded in 2010 and developed by the Department of History at the University of Texas at Austin. The website presents dynamic and accessible short articles on every field of history. As their homepage notes, "It is also a place for all who are interested in history to meet one another and share their viewpoints, to learn what books and films historians are reading and watching, and to gather perspectives on national, international, and Texas events of contemporary interest." First-time visitors should start in the "Read" area where they can read book reviews, watch short video clips of scholars and others talking about various favorite works, and also download podcasts. Finally, visitors can also look over the "Virtual Courses" area to look at the free courses being offered online each semester. [KMG]

Rufus Woods Photographs

The photographer Rufus Woods documented the vast transformation of the area around what became the Grand Coulee Dam in Washington State. This massive project was not without controversy, and many people were upset that they had to move their worldly possessions and homes for the construction of this massive dam. North central Washington was dramatically changed, and this digital collection provides some remarkable evidence of the process. Staff members at the Central Washington University Libraries completed the collection, and there are several hundred photographs in this archive. Visitors can browse through the items by date or by title, and they can also perform more detailed searches as well. Some of the highlights here include visitors parading across the top of the completed dam, power transmission towers, and some of the buildings that would later be swept under the water as the reservoir behind the dam filled up. [KMG]

National Public Lands Day [pdf]

Sponsored by the National Environmental Education Foundation (NEEF), National Public Lands Day (NPLD) was started in 1994 with three federal agencies and 700 volunteers. Today, over 150,000 volunteers take part every year at over 2,000 locations across the United States. The idea for such a day came from the work of the Civilian Conservation Corps, and on this site, visitors can learn about NPLD and how they can participate. Here, visitors can sign up for their newsletter, find a local NPLD site, and also learn about past projects. The "Resource Library" contains posters, handouts, and site manager tools that will help interested parties create a successful NPLD event. Moving along, the "Get Involved" section contains information about setting up a NPLD site, grants, webinars, and stories from volunteers. Finally, the "Photos & Videos" area contains photographic essays and video clips that document past NPLD activities. [KMG]

General Interest

Birthplace of Country Music

Country music has a number of historical "hearth" areas, but none is perhaps better known than the area around eastern Tennessee and southwest Virginia. The Birthplace of Country Music Alliance is dedicated to providing interested parties with information about this region, along with crafting performances and cultural events that celebrate this heritage and rich musical tradition. On their homepage, visitors can learn about their events, listening to streaming audio of various performances, and also catch all the information about country music venues in the area. Moving on, visitors can also sign up for their newsletter and browse an interactive calendar of events. Finally, visitors can also learn about their new plans for an elaborate Cultural Heritage Center, which they hope will attract over 75,000 visitors annually. [KMG]

Kennebec: A Portfolio of Maine Writing

Maine has produced some tremendous writers, and the University of Maine at Augusta has been working diligently to provide a set of online resources related to these artists and their writings. Part of this work includes the project to digitize the literary journal "Kennebec". The journal was first published in 1977 under the direction of faculty and students of the University of Maine, along with assistance and support from citizens in the Kennebec community. Interestingly enough, the first issue sets out a grand plan to move the capitol of Augusta to a type of "Brasilia" in the western hills of Maine. It's a grand start, and each issues contains poetry, non-fiction pieces, and other items. Visitors can scan through the issues as they see fit, or they can also use the index file which lists each piece of writing and its location within the pdf file. In the first issue, visitors should definitely check out "Three Immortals", which is a series of poems about the jazz greats Lester Young, Bud Powell, and Charlie Parker. [KMG]

Charleston Earthquake 1886

Major earthquakes may not be that common in the Southeast, but on August 31, 1886, just such a cataclysmic event shook Charleston and the surrounding area. While the entire event lasted less than a minute, it caused many deaths and injuries, along with tremendous property damage. On hand during the aftermath was George LaGrange Cook a prominent local photographer who created the series "Cook's Earthquake Views of Charleston and Vicinity". This collection featured 200 photographs that could be purchased as souvenirs. Visitors to this digital collection can view some of the items from this volume, which documents the destruction wrought by this event. Also, it is worth noting that visitors can also search for specific items of interest and browse around by subject heading. [KMG]

Arbor Day Foundation

Arbor Day was first observed in 1872, and the Arbor Day Foundation was founded in 1972 in Nebraska. The Arbor Day website contains a trove of information for visitors to peruse, make plans around, and learn from. The "Trees" section of the website includes "What Tree is That?", an online guide for tree identification; a "Tree Guide", that covers more than 200 different species of trees; and a quiz called "The Right Tree in the Right Place", about how and why to first make a simple plan, considering size and shape, when planting trees around a house. The "Programs" section of the website is an excellent resource for visitors such as teachers, parents and students. "Nature Explore" helps connect kids with nature via the "Resource Guide", which contains "field-tested resources developed to bring nature into children's daily learning in sustainable, significant, positive and joyful ways." Interested visitors can use the link entitled "Request a Resource Guide", to get a free copy. "Nature Explore Classroom Certification" links teachers to the certification process and examples of certified classrooms and classrooms in-progress. [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

Historical Oil Spill Information

The Office of Response and Restoration (OR&R) is a part of NOAA's National Ocean Service, and provides scientific support to contain and manage ocean spills. This portion of their website contains information on historical oil spills, and provides visitors with links to dozens of oil spills that go back more than forty years, charts and graphs of statistics on the "number and location of oil spills, the amount of oil spilled, and the causes of the spills", and OR&R's photo database, which covers oil and chemical spills. The photo database, found at the bottom of the page, contains approximately 4,300 total photographs and can be browsed via the following thematic collections: "Coastal Restoration", "Regional Coastal Restoration" and "Spill Incidents". Clicking on a spill will provide visitors with Incident Response Documents, such as "Behavior of Oil", "Shoreline Types Impacted", and "Countermeasures/Mitigation", which includes applying dispersant, shoreline cleanup and skimming operations. The Behavior of Oil document includes details on who first reported the spill, what type of oil it is, the size of the slick and which direction it is headed. [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

A Revolution in Wood: The Bresler Collection

Noted collectors of American crafts, Fleur and Charles Bresler, donated a collection of 66 pieces of turned and carved wood objects to the Smithsonian. This exhibition celebrates this fine gift, and the turned wood provides the revolutionary name of the exhibitions title. In 2002, Fleur Bresler invited Kenneth R. Trapp, then curator at the Renwick Gallery, to come to the Bresler's apartment to hand pick pieces to be included in the donation. The objects in the collection are made by turning the wood on a lathe and were created by American artists. The online exhibition is primarily a slideshow of images of all 66 pieces, arranged in groups of eight. In addition, there is a short podcast, in which Fleur Bresler, Kenneth R. Trapp, and several artists discuss the collection. A longer video (about an hour) "Shop Talk" is also available, and provides a recording of a round-table discussion at the Museum moderated by curator Nicholas Bell, with Bresler, and wood artists Michelle Holzapfel, Mark Lindquist, and Norm Sartorius.

Network Tools

JayCut 2.2

Do you want to edit your videos? But you say you don't have any video editing software? Never fear, as JayCut is here. With JayCut visitors can sign up for free and create their own voice-overs, work with slow-motion effects, and even throw in a green screen or two for dramatic affect. This version is compatible with Windows 2000 and newer. [KMG]

Google Voice

Google Voice is just one of the many projects that the folks at Google have been working on, and if you need to communicate across a variety of formats and phones, this service is quite good. Visitors can use the Google Voice device to make phone calls from their Gmail account, create personalized greetings, share voicemails, block callers, and also call internationally. A series of videos on their site explains each feature, and this version is compatible with all operating systems. [KMG]

In The News

Wikipedia celebrates its 10th year and looks to the future

At 10, highlighting Wikipedia's past and future

Wikipedia-an unplanned miracle

In praise of Wikipedia

Wikipedia Comes of Age

The State of Wikipedia


On January 15, 2001, Larry Sanger and Jimmy Wales began a new project with the words "Hello, world." Their next entry was "Humor me. Go there and add a little article. It will take all of five or ten minutes." Since then, Wikipedia has become the go-to online reference source for stumped college students, trivia fans, and the generally curious. Of course, there have been many critics, and some have claimed that many of the entries are merely sounding boards for those who may be singularly possessed by a certain subject, and not in an altogether objective fashion. Today, Wikipedia is the fifth-most popular online destination in the world, and it draws in 410 million unique visitors a month. One area of concern in recent years is that growth of new and discrete entries on the site has slowed significantly. This may be expected due to the fact that with 17 million articles, quite a bit of knowledge has been covered over the past decade. Andrew Lih, who wrote the book "The Wikipedia Revolution", commented that it will be integral for the Wikimedia Foundation to reach out to large cultural institutions in the coming years in order to provide the site with new, high-quality material. [KMG]

The first link will take visitors to a piece from CNET's Daniel Terdiman on the history of Wikipedia. The second link leads to an opinion piece from the Guardian's Clay Shirky on the enduring popularity of Wikipedia. Moving along, the third link leads to a humorous and insightful article from last week's Economist about the future of Wikipedia. The fourth link leads to a bit of reflection on the recent transformation of the reference world from Casper Grathwohl, the vice president and publisher of digital and reference content for Oxford University Press. The fifth link leads to a short graphic presentation narrated by Wikipedia co-founder Jimmy Wales that talks about Wikipedia's past, present, and future. Finally, the last link is a bit of a "meta" offering, as it leads to the Wikipedia entry on Wikipedia.

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Internet Scout Team
Max GrinnellEditor
Chanda HaldermanManaging Editor
Edward AlmasyCo-Director
Rachael BowerCo-Director
Andrea CoffinMetadata Specialist
Bryan SchneiderInternet Cataloger
Autumn Hall-TunInternet Cataloger
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