The Scout Report for Science & Engineering - January 21, 1998

The Scout Report for Science & Engineering

January 21, 1998

A Publication of the Internet Scout Project
Computer Sciences Department, University of Wisconsin-Madison

The target audience of the new Scout Report for Science & Engineering is faculty, students, staff, and librarians in the life sciences, physical sciences, and engineering. Each biweekly issue offers a selective collection of Internet resources covering topics in the sciences, and related fields such as math and engineering, that have been chosen by librarians and content specialists in the given field of study.

The Scout Report for Science & Engineering is also provided via email once every two weeks. Subscription information is included at the bottom of each issue.

In This Issue
The Scout Report
* Research * Current Awareness
* Learning Resources * New Data
* General Interest * In the News

The National Plant Germplasm System--USDA
This site contains information on numerous collections of plant germplasm in the U.S. The site is divided into the following sections: Search GRIN (Germplasm Resources Information Network), Collections (maps of repositories), Requesting Germplasm, pcGRIN (ftp and downloadable version of the program), information on associated committees, repository home pages and links to related web sites. The "Search GRIN" function allows users to query the database using a number of identifiers and trace numerous germplasm resoruces to their repository. The NPGS is a cooperative effort by public and private organizations to preserve the genetic diversity of plants. [DF]
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National Environmental Publications Information
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) created this site as a one stop shop for over 6,000 EPA documents. Users can search or browse documents by number or title, Natinal Publications Catalog, or Technical Information Packages. The EPA has also provided the user with an index of terminology, abbreviations, and acronyms. [KH]
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Mammalian Homology to Yeast
This site allows researchers to retrieve a yeast-against-mammal Basic Local Alignment Search Tool (BLAST) report by entering a gene or ORF name into a search function. The supporting data were first summarized in a recent Science article which is provided via a link to the journal (Science, 22 July 1997; Issue 277: p.1259). Steve Chervitz of Stanford University maintains this site. [DF]
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B-System (Unix) Version 4.5
The MB-System, developed by David Caress and Dale Chayes at the Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory of Columbia University, is a softwae program for the processing and display of swath sonar data. The MB-System is a compilation of source code for Unix platforms for analyzing swath sonar bathymetry, amplitude, and sidescan data. The homepage for the MB-System contains a short list of the program's capabilities (items on this list are linked to the corresponding manual page for the MB-System), a list of supported swath data formats, and frequently asked questions and their answers. The MB-System can be downloaded via an anonymous ftp connection or on the web. The system requires additional software programs for successful use of the MB-System. Links to download these programs and detailed instructions for installing the system are provided. [KH]
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The Shrew (ist's) Site
Created by Dr. Werner Haberl of Vienna, Austria, this site contains The Shrew Conference Hall, ShrewTalk (an e-mail newsletter/digest), a photo gallery and a skull and skeleton collection, among other features. From the ShrewTalk page, users can access a hyperlink to "The Shrew Conference Hall" which contains the photo gallery of shrews, their tracks, their enemies, and an email list of shrew researchers. The site is devoted to the biology of this often overlooked creature and its small mammal relatives. [DF]
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E-LETTER on Systems, Control, and Signal Processing
E-LETTER, edited by Anton A. Stoorvogel and Siep Weiland of the Eindhoven University of Technology (the Netherlands), is a monthly compendium of information of interest to those working in these fields of mathematics and engineering. Each issue contains updates on relevant books, journal tables of contents, conferences, and employment opportunities. [KH]

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Learning Resources
Introduction to Microengineering
This site provides an in-depth introduction to microengineering. A detailed outline of the site is provided up front so users can select a specific microengineering topic, or start from the very beginning to learn the basics. Both text and graphics are used to convey the techniques and applications of microengineering. A link to an introduction to microsystems, microsensors, and microactuators is also provided. [KH]
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Timber Rattlesnake Homepage
Renowned Wisconsin herpitologists Gary Caspar and Robert Hay have created this comprehensive site to address the paucity of accurate information and abundant misinformation on the Timber Rattlesnake. This species is classified as rare to endangered in all of the 27 eastern US states in which it is found. This site seeks to demistify this creature and the irrational fear of all rattlesnakes with a wealth of biological information. Sections include population and distribution status, life history, listing history, recent news, and data on frequency and treatment for bites. Links to a number of related sites are also included. [DF]
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Exploring the Environment--NASA
Exploring the Environment (ETE), a NASA Classroom of the Future hosted by Wheeling Jesuit University, aims to teach high school students collaborative scientific inquiry and analysis through use of remote sensing technology and the Internet. The Modules and Activities section contains two introductory activities to familiarize users with remote sensing software and images. Twelve modules are divided into three categories, Basic, Comprehensive, and Advanced. Modules range in topic from weather to water quality to mountain gorillas. Each module contains an in depth lesson with definitions, concepts, activities, and problems to solve. The modules are designed for a group of students to work together to resolve the given situation. The Teachers Guide provides instructors with information about each module, helpful hints for planning, facilitating, and assessing modules, and Teacher-to-Teacher, a section under construction where teachers will be able to share their thoughts and ideas related to the module subjects. [KH]
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Recommendations for the Introductory Microbiology Laboratory Core Curriculum
This draft document is the outcome of the 1997 American Society for Microbiology (ASM) Undergraduate Education Conference. It represents a consensus among 150 microbiology educators from a variety of colleges and universities. It contains an introduction, and sections on laboratory safety, laboratory skills, laboratory thinking skills, and laboratory content. The core themes and topics are meant to frame objectives to be met somewhere within an introductory microbiology lab. This site also contains links to related sites such as Resources for Teachers/Departments, Undergraduate Microbiology Curriculum Recommendations, and ASM Programs, Products and Services. [DF]
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General Interest
The International Society for Optical Engineering (SPIE) is a society for research, engineering, and applications of optics, photonics, imaging, and electronics. The SPIE page hosts a large volume of information on optical engineering ranging from publications to employment oportunities to optical standards. Conference calls for papers and conference announcements are also provided. [KH]
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Science and the Environment Issues--Environment Canada
The first issue (October 1997) of this Canadian government online publication containes articles on the following topics: smog, toxics, nature, climate change, ozone depletion, acid rain, and water pollution. Most of the information in this first issue provides a general background to each of the above topics that educators or students would find useful. S & E Issues is available in English and French. [DF]
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International Nuclear Safety Program Map Updates
International Nuclear Safety Program--DOE
The International Nuclear Safety Program (INSP) has updated their map collection in the areas of Soviet designed reactors distributed throughout Eastern Europe and a map of Ukrainian nuclear power reactors. Information about each reactor is also available by clicking on the maps. Maps showing the distribution of nuclear reactors for Russia and Central Eastern Europe are also available. In addition to the maps, the digital library also contains photos, graphics, presentations, and an online database of INSP related reports and information. The site also provides information about Soviet designed reactors and initiatives being undertaken by the US Department of Energy to improve conditions at the Chornobyl nuclear power plant. INSP is part of the US Department of Energy's Office of Nuclear Energy, Science, and Technology. [KH]
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Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center
Devoted entirely to issues related to migratory birds, this site provides broad and accessable information on the millions of songbirds that breed in the U.S. and Canada and spend the winter in Latin America and the Caribbean. John Sterling maintains this site which contains seven fact sheets that discuss the relationship between migratory birds and coffee, insect consumption, the importance of stopover sites, and avian adaptations to long-distance migration. The "bird of the month" feature highlights the ecology and life history of one migratory species and including interesting facts on the species' behavior or biology, and a link to data from the Breeding Bird Survey. Clickable maps of Central and South America link to country lists of migratory birds together with their abundance. This site will appeal to biologists and birdwatchers alike. [DF]
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Environment Issues and Resources--USIA
This site contains information collected by the United States Information Agency concerning environmental issues and resources. Ten information areas cover topics such as biodiversity, environmental education, and sustainable development. Links are provided to allow the visitor to explore specific topics within each category. The site also includes a bibliography and a small selection of relevant USIA Pamphlets. [KH]
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Current Awareness
(For links to additional current awareness on tables of contents, abstracts, preprints, new books, data, conferences, etc., visit the Science & Engineering Current Awareness Metapage:

Frontiers is the electronic version of the National Science Foundation's print journal of the same name. Frontiers is released each month and covers work funded by the NSF, including topics in math, science, engineering, and educational programs. Public policy issues affecting the NSF, research, and education are also covered. [KH]
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Science and Technology--BBC News
This daily selection of science headlines and feature articles from the BBC covers both the life- and physical-sciences. Each article contains cross references to other relevant BBC content, as well as links to relevant sites. This is a good source of current information with a European spin. [DF]
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The Monitoring, Evaluation, Reporting and Verification of Climate Change Mitigation Projects: Discussion of Issues and Methodologies and Review of Existing Protocols and Guidelines--IESG LANL [.pdf, 98p.]
The International Energy Studies Group of the Energy Analysis Program at the Lawrence Berkely National Laboratory has recently made available this study (LBNL-40316), which discusses the issues related to various Monitoring, Evaluating, Reporting, and Verifying (MERV) guidelines for projects for the reduction of greenhouse gas emmissions. [JS]
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Academic Press New Releases
Academic Press has released a list of new titles to be published by April 1998. Titles are available for behavioral, life, and physical sciences. [JS]
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Job Openings in Science and Technology from the Chronicle of Higher Education

AGI Geoscience Careers Site
The American Geological Institute (AGI) created this site in collaboration with the Professional Careers Pathways in the Geosciences project. Through the Brochure section, AGI provides information on what is a geoscientist, what they do, where they work, and the job outlook. Brief descriptions of the many types of geoscientists are available. But to get a real picture of what geoscientists do, AGI has compiled biographies of many different types of geoscientists. AGI also provides career statistics in a variety of forms. Job advertisements are also available and lean heavily on the academic arena. [KH]

Jobs in Conservation Biology--SCB
This searchable jobs listing, provided by the Society for Conservation Biology, is the place to start searching for positions at all levels from activitsts to field and laboratory assistants to professors. An excellent feature of this site is the collection of links to related jobs listing services including: The Chronicle of Higher Education,Science magazine, Environmental Careers World, Environmental Career Opportunities, Federal Job Opportunities Board (2), and several other agency jobs listings. [DF]

AAS Job Register
The American Astronomical Society presents a monthly listing of jobs in the field of astronomy. [JS]
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Funding Opportunity Information
1998 Lucille M. Wert Scholarship--ACS
The American Chemical Society, Division of Chemical Information announces its 1998 Lucille M. Wert Scholarship. Awards are presented to persons pursuing a advanced degree in Chemical Information. Application information is available on the web page. Deadline to apply is March 20, 1998. [KH]

FY 1998 Combined Research Curriculum Development Program--NSF
The US National Science Foundation Directorates for Engineering and Computer and Information Science and Engineering offer this program, which support "multidisciplinary projects that integrate new, state-of-the-art research advances in emerging technology areas into upper level undergraduate and introductory graduate engineering and computer and information science curricula." More information about the program, including program eligibility requirements and deadlines are available. [JS]

National Research Council's Internship Program Summer 1998--NAS
The National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences provides these Summer Internships, "designed to engage science, engineering, medical, and law students in the creation of science and technology policy and to familiarize them with the interactions of science and government. Graduate students and doctoral candidates in physical sciences, life sciences, social sciences or any field of engineering as well as students in law, medical, and veterinary programs are invited to apply before March 1, 1998. [JS]
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Wendy Warr Conferences - 1998
Wendy Warr and Associates maintains a listing of conferences occurring in a variety of fields of chemistry. Represented subjects include combinatorial chemistry, knowledge management, and chemometrics. Contact information is provided, along with email address and web site if available. Conferences are listed by date, not subject, so be patient as you scroll through the list. [KH]

Entomlogical Society of America Calendar of Events
The Entomological Society of America maintains a selective annotated listing of upcoming conferences of interest to entomologists. Both ESA and non-ESA conferences are covered. [JS]
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New Data
Surface Observed Global Land Precipitation Variations: 1900-1988--GISS
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Goddard Institute for Space Studies has two datasets of monthly and annual anomaly precipitation analyses available online. The data sets have a resolution of 2.5 deg x 2.5 deg. The first data set contains data from January 1900 to December 1988 obtained from the DOE. The second data set is an update of the first set and contains data from 1850 to 1995 obtained from NOAA baseline precipitation and NOAA NCEP station data. Data is a FORTRAN binary format and may be downloaded via the Web or an FTP client program. [KH]
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Results from USDA's 1996 Continuing Survey of Food Intakes by Individuals and 1996 Diet and Health Knowledge Survey [.pdf]
Results from four continuing CSFII/DHKS surveys have recently been made available [Adobe Acrobat (.pdf) format only] by the United States Department of Agriculture. Table sets available are: Results from USDA's 1996 CSFII/DHKS;Results from USDA's 1994-96 CSFII/DHKS: Combined 3-year data;Intakes of Individual Fatty Acids--CSFII 1994-96: Combined 3-year data; and Pyramid Servings Data for CSFII 1995 and for CSFII 1996. The results are part of the Beltsville Human Nutrition Resources Center's (BHNRC) Food Survey Research Group's What We Eat in America study. [JS]
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Natural Gas Productive Capacity for the Lower 48 States 1986-1998--EIA [.pdf, 79p.]
The US Department of Energy's Energy Information Administration has recently released this study on natural gas capcity and production for the US. [JS]
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In the News
The Life of a Cell
1. Extending Cellular Life Span with Telomerase--Science magazine Special Feature [.pdf]
3. Biochemistry Moscow
4. Geron Corporation
5. Animated Telomerase demonstration
6. Telomere & Telomerase Research Information
This issue's In the News deals with a recent finding regarding telomerase, a gene which affects the mechanisms controlling human cell replication. The six sites listed above provide general information on telomerase, current telomere research, and the use of telemorase in medical practice. Telomerase increases the life-span of a cell, and is thus central to both aging and cancer.

(1) This Science magazine site contains full text of a research article: "Extension of Life-Span by Introduction of Telomerase into Normal Human Cells," by Andrea G. Bodnar et. al. (January 16, 1998; Vol 279, No. 5349--available in Adobe Acrobat [.pdf] format only) describes the Telomerase finding and includes a commentary by Titia de Lange of Rockefeller University's Laboratory of Cell Biology and Genetics. (2) This TelDB metasite provides information on telomere research and a searchable citations database, including over 1100 telomere-related citations from 200 journals. TelDB is part of GenLink, an NIH-funded resource headed by researchers at Washington University at St. Louis. (3) This Special Issue of Biochemistry (Moscow), (Volume 62 (1997), Number 11) includes several technical review articles on telomere, telomerase, cancer and aging. (4) Geron Corporation is a biopharmaceutical company specializing in therapeutic and diagnostic products for age-related diseases. Geron owns several telomerase related patents. Calvin B. Harley of Geron is one of the co-authors of the Science article. Their page describes programs and products related to cellular aging and Cancer Therapeutics. (5) This site, created by Dr. Donald F. Slish at State University of New York at Plattsburgh, contains a graphic demonstration of the role of Telomerase in DNA replication. (6) Toru M. Nakamura, a Biochemistry graduate student at the University of Colorado, Boulder has created this very thorough and informative page describing Telomere & Telomerase Research. It is highlighted by ahyperlinked listing of telomerase related research groups. [JS]
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The Scout Report for Science & Engineering
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The Scout Report for Science & Engineering is published every other Wednesday by the Internet Scout Project, located in the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Department of Computer Sciences.

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Copyright Susan Calcari and the University of Wisconsin Board of Regents, 1994-1998. Permission is granted to make and distribute verbatim copies of the Scout Report for Science & Engineering provided the copyright notice and this paragraph is preserved on all copies. The Internet Scout Project provides information about the Internet to the US research and education community under a grant from the National Science Foundation, number NCR-9712163. The Government has certain rights in this material.

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