The Scout Report for Science & Engineering - March 4, 1998

The Scout Report for Science & Engineering

March 4, 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 FEMCI (Finite Element Modeling Continuous Improvement) Book--NASA GSFC
The FEMCI Homepage
The FEMCI (Finite Element Modeling Continuous Improvement) Book is part of the Systems Analysis Branch homepage at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Goddard Space Flight Center. The Book explains and demonstrates different finite element modeling and analysis techniques, including frequency response-vibration and modal weight calculations. In addition to the FEMCI Book, the homepage provides links to both NASA and Non-NASA finite element modeling sites. [KH]
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Three Journals From the University of Chicago Press
The American Journal of Human Genetics
The Astronomical Journal
Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific
The University of Chicago Press has announced unrestricted access to three online journals until mid-1998. Full text articles, announcements, and editorials are all available. With online issues beginning at Volume 61, number 5 (November 1997), The American Journal of Human Genetics covers research and reviews of human heredity and the application of genetic principles in medicine, psychology, anthropology, and social services, as well as molecular and cell biology. Available electronic issues of The Astronomical Journal (AJ) begin with Volume 115, number 1 (January, 1998). AJ covers "The expanded coverage of quasars, supernova remnants, and studies of the interstellar medium [as well as] traditional areas of astronomy." Publications of the Astronomical Society of the Pacific (PASP) begin with Volume 110 (1998). This journal "provides an outlet for astronomical results of a scientific nature and serves to keep readers in touch with current astronomical research. PASP contains refereed research and instrumentation papers, invited reviews, and dissertation summaries." All three publications are available in various formats. [LXP]
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Engineering E-journal Search Engine--EEVL
EESE is a well-focused, searchable index of more than 70 full-text, free access, engineering e-journals in the UK, the US, and beyond. EESE is based at Heriot-Watt University, Edinburgh, Scotland, and is made available through the Edinburgh Engineering Virtual Library (EEVL--discussed in the September 20, 1996 Scout Report) The special utility of this site is the access to full-text articles (available in various formats) on engineering, industry, statistics, product reviews, and job listings. Indexed journals include Control Engineering Online,Chemistry & Industry,Chartered Surveyor Monthly,Journal of Corrosion Science,Engineering,Metals Watch and Industry Week, among others. [LXP]
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The North American Breeding Bird Survey: Results and Analysis 1966-1996
This 30-year summary of the monumental effort to monitor breeding birds across North America is a gold mine for bird enthusiasts. Launched in the 1960's by the legendary Chan Robbins, the Breeding Bird Survey of the Patuxent Wildlife Research Center now maintains 3,700 active BBS surveys ("routes") across the continental US and Canada, of which nearly 2,900 are surveyed annually. Visitors can find continent-wide range maps, population trends (with option for certain time periods), identification tips and general summaries for more than 200 species of birds during 30 years of Breeding Bird Survey research. Though an obvious resource for educators and students, this site is of unusual utility to scientists as well, because it includes detailed descriptions of how data were collected and analyzed. [LXP]
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Nuclear Science References WWW Retrieval System--BNL NNDC [Netscape 3.0 or Higher]
The retrieval system contains references to low and intermediate energy physics research publications listed in the Nuclear Science Reference (NSR) Data File at the National Nuclear Data Center, Brookhaven National Laboratory. Users can search via nuclide, target, incident particle, outgoing particle, reaction, author, keynumber list, subject or quantity. Links to abstracts from the American Physical Society are provided. Output formats include HTML or plain text. Searches can be narrowed by specifying range of years for query, primary reference, or a NSR Entry Date. Once past the initial frames interface, the list of references appears in a new, uncluttered window. Note, the retrieval system does not work with Microsoft Internet Explorer or versions of Netscape less than 3.0. [KH]
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International Association for Plant Taxonomy: Announcing a Trial Registration of New Plant Names
Serving as the plant taxonomy section of the International Union of Biological Sciences (IUBS), IAPT was established in 1950 "to carry out projects of interest and concern to systematic biologists." Specifically, IAPT is dedicated to "the recognition, organization, evolution, and naming of plants and fungi, both living and fossil," an important task which is made difficult by distinct international languages. According to current practice, all new names of plants and fungi will have to be registered "in order to be validly published after the 1st of January 2000." Thus, the IAPT has launched a two-year, non-mandatory, trial registration period in which botanists and mycologists are encouraged to register plant and fungi names with the organization. Registration forms, a long list of accredited journals and serials, and access to abstracts in the journal Taxon are all provided at this site. [LXP]
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Learning Resources
Numerical Methods
This site contains lecture notes from the Spring 1998 Numerical Methods course taught in the Department of Applied Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at the University of Cambridge, UK. The lecture notes cover six topics: finding roots in one dimension, linear equations, numerical integration, first order and higher order ordinary differential equations, and partial differential equations. The notes are clearly organized and include linked cross-references. [KH]
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The Cichlid Fishes of Lake Malawi, Africa
This impressive site features a hot spot of tropical biodiversity -- "both the largest lake-fish fauna and the largest vertebrate species flock on earth--the Cichlid of southeastern Africa's Lake Malawi." Provided by Dr. M. K. Oliver, a doctorate from Yale University, this site has recently been upgraded to include hundreds of new photographs of Cichlid species. Besides the large collection of fish images, the site contains satellite photographs of Africa (Lake Malawi) from space, checklists and pictures of the "Hap" and "Mbuna" species flocks, updated bibliographies on Cichlid systematics, and an alphabetical index of all information at the site. [LXP]
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Engineering: Your Future--ASEE
Engineering: Your Future is an effort by the American Society for Engineering Education to increase awareness and interest in the field of engineering. The site targets precollege students to ensure that they consider the range of opportunities available to them. Visitors can find information on engineering and engineering technology; aspects of engineering education, such as how to choose an engineering school, how to prepare for an education in engineering, and how to finance such an education; the fun aspects of engineering; famous engineers; and a section to help prospective engineers determine if this is the right field for them. The site also alphabetically lists the types of engineers, describes what they do, and offers links to additional sites. [KH]
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Atlas of North Dakota Butterflies--USGS NPWRC
This impressive collection of butterfly photographs and distribution maps is provided by Dr. Ronald Royer of Minot State University, ND, in conjunction with the US Geological Survey's Northern Prairie Wildlife Research Center. The Butterfly Atlas is expanded and updated at the end of each butterfly season; 139 new species photos have recently been added. Species are conveniently grouped by family, and most species entries are now complete. In addition to one or more clear identification photographs, each species account includes common and scientific name, habitat information, larval food, adult flight dates, references, and a colorful range map detailing that species' occurrence in North Dakota. Beyond its utility as "the most accurate and most recent North Dakota county atlas data available anywhere," this site is a solid resource for butterfly enthusiasts and science educators everywhere. [LXP]
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Comparative Environmental Studies: The Cultural and Political Ecology of Marginal Environments
The entire reading list for this University of Colorado environmental studies course, including many activated links to articles and web sites, is online. The referenced list is sorted by the topics discussed each week in the course. This is a formidable resource for those interested in a course in cultural and political ecology. [KH]
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General Interest
Great '98 Backyard Bird Count
During the weekend of February 20-22, 1998, thousands of birders participated in the first-ever simultaneously recorded (via Internet) continent-wide back yard bird count. A massive effort co-sponsored by Cornell University's Laboratory of Ornithology and the National Audubon Society, the Great '98 Bird Count's goal is to "provide a detailed picture of how bird populations compare region-by-region, as counted by ordinary citizens at the time of year when most migratory birds are just getting ready to head back north from their wintering grounds." The site contains summary data on the number of observers reporting (by postal code, state, and hour), the total number of birds recorded (by species), and--of greatest value--color maps of species distributions (including all locations surveyed). In addition, 10-year trends from Project Feeder Watch are provided for comparison. Note that "raw data" maps and summaries are currently being added to provide immediate access to data; charts have not yet been checked for accuracy. [LXP]
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Sun-Earth Connection: Eclipses, Explosions, and Space Weather Forecasts [RealPlayer, QuickTime]
In honor of the solar eclipse that occurred on February 26, 1998, The Exploratorium (discussed in the February 21, 1997 Scout Report) and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Sun-Earth Connection Education Forum collaborated to produce this lesson on the effects that events on the sun have on the earth. The narrative focuses on coronal mass ejections (CMEs) which can have a tremendous effect on satellites and radio, television, and telephone signals. The site uses audio clips (RealPlayer) from physicists and QuickTime movies to supplement some of the written material. [KH]
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Teaming With Wildlife
A huge proportion of the monies used to conserve and manage the United States' wildlife (and wild lands) originates from "user fees" - fees paid by hunters and fishers. Although these groups provide millions of dollars annually, additional funds are needed to effectively protect and manage the country's diminishing natural resources. "Teaming With Wildlife" offers a creative approach to raising more monies that targets a different group of wildlife "users" by proposing a small fee (no more than five per cent) on outdoor recreational equipment (camping gear, binoculars, canoes, etc.). The site, provided by the International Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies, contains a description and an historical summary of the program, a frequently updated list of participating organizations, and answers to frequently asked questions. Users can search the list of organizations by alphabetical selection. [LXP]
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Manchester Celebrates the 50th Anniversary of the First Stored-Program Computer
The first stored computer program, Small-Scale Experimental Machine (SSEM), was created on June 21, 1948 at the University of Manchester, UK. In order to celebrate this gigantic step in computing history, the University as well as the city of Manchester are coordinating a variety of commemorative events beginning in June 1998. This site provides details on all of the currently scheduled events. Visitors can find descriptions of the SSEM and its offspring, the Manchester Mark 1 and the Ferranti Mark 1, at the site. [KH]
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National Estuary Program--EPA
Text only:
Established in 1987 by amendments to the Clean Water Act and administered by the Environmental Protection Agency's Office of Wetlands, Oceans, and Watersheds (OWOW), the National Estuary Program (NEP) identifies, restores and protects estuaries along the coasts of the United States. Unlike the traditional regulatory approaches to environmental protection, the NEP targets a wide range of issues and engages local communities in the process. At the site users can find descriptions of the NEP, specific NEP projects, estuaries involved in the NEP (including location, size, presence of threatened and endangered species, major habitat types, etc.), a current awareness section, links to related sites, and the full text of NEP's newsletter, Coastlines. The site will soon be available in Spanish. [LXP]
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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:

Clean Water Initiative: Restoring and Protecting America's Waters--EPA
The US Environmental Protection Agency provides this detailed site on the nation's Clean Water Action Plan. The site contains four major sections: The Clean Water Action Plan, Development of the Plan, Partners, and Related Links. Complete with watershed examples, photographs, and links to relevant government handbooks, databases and sites, the Clean Water Initiative site provides ample information on the future of the nation's waters. [LXP]
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New Publications from NSF
Characteristics of Recent Science and Engineering Graduates: 1995 [.pdf, Excel]
This report and tables are the result of a National Science Foundation survey of science and engineering graduates from the academic years 1993 and 1994. The report is divided into three chapters: Technical Notes, Tabulated Data, and the Questionnaire. The survey included information about education experience, employment characteristics, relationship between education and employment, and background and demographic characteristics. The document is available in hypertext or Adobe Acrobat (.pdf) formats. Microsoft Excel spreadsheets display the data tables. [KH]

Federal Funds for Research and Development Fiscal Years 1995, 1996, and 1997 [.pdf, Excel]
The Division of Science Resources Studies (SRS) at the National Science Foundation wrote this report describing the distribution of federal funding for research and development (R&D) programs in the fiscal years 1995-1997. The Overview provides information and statistics on the total funding shares for federal agencies, R&D growth in the 1990s, development funding, research funding, and a who is doing the research. General and technical notes help to clarify the information and statistics, information on federally funded R&D centers, and detailed statistical tables. An appendix lists government agencies with indicators of whether or not they were included in the survey. The document is available in hypertext and Adobe Acrobat (.pdf) formats; data tables are available in Microsoft Excel. [KH]
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Academia Book Releases--Baker & Taylor--March 1998
Baker & Taylor announced their book releases for titles scheduled to be available to the public in April 1998. New titles are available in Agricultural Sciences; Biological Sciences; Chemical, Biotechnological, and Petroleum Engineering; Earth Sciences; Electrical and Electronic Engineering; Mathematical Sciences; Mechanical Engineering; and Technology and Material Sciences. See the Science & Engineering Current Awareness Meta Page for links to individual new books sections. [KH]
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Organometallic Research Centers in Europe--FECS
The Federation of European Chemical Societies provides this site, a directory listing of "... European Organometallic Chemists, as well as their field of research." Listings are browsable only at this time, arranged by country from Austria to the UK, and provide postal and email addresses, as well as phone and fax numbers when available. [JS]
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Job Openings in Science and Technology from the Chronicle of Higher Education

Employment Opportunities for Microbiologists--ASM
This site provides recent employment listings posted by The American Society for Microbiology. [LXP]
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Funding Opportunity Information
This new database is the result of a collaboration between the Howard Hughes Medical Institute (HHMI) and the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). The database allows users to search for available grants in the biological and medical sciences. Users can narrow their grant search by specifying training level, type of application (individual or institution), or research area. More than 20 research areas are included in the database. Registration is required to use the database and to receive the email updates on new grants, but it is free. The New Awards section on the front page can be viewed without registering. [KH]

Optimized Portable Algorithms and Application Libraries (OPAAL)--NSF (NSF 98-64)
The National Science Foundation and the Defense Sciences Office of the Defense Advanced Projects Research Agency (DARPA) announce their joint support of research and development on "new approaches to the design and creation of efficient algorithms and optimized libraries for large-scale numerical modeling and simulation of physical phenomena arising in industrial applications." In more general terms, the Optimized Portable Algorithm and Application Libraries (OPAAL) is an initiative for researchers in the mathematical sciences to collaborate with other scientists and engineers "in the development of innovative mathematical techniques applicable to simulation of complex physical processes." The announcement particularly solicits fresh ideas, techniques, approaches, the formation of new research teams, and "the participation of researchers new to such problem areas." The deadline for email letters of intent is May 22, 1998, and for Receipt of Proposals is July 1, 1998. [LXP]
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192nd Meeting of the American Astronomical Society
The 192nd meeting of the American Astronomical Society will take place June 7-11, 1998 in San Diego, CA. The conference will consist of 22 sessions discussing a variety of topics, such as historical astronomy, gamma-ray bursts, and Antarctic astrophysics. In addition to the sessions, the conference will host the following Prize Lecturers and Invited Speakers: Jean Swank, Andrea Ghez, John Carlstrom, Allen Shafter, and Peter Goldreich. Deadline for abstract submission is April 8, 1998. [KH]

The 1998 American Institute of Biological Sciences Annual Meeting
This year's annual meeting of the American Institute of Biological Sciences (AIBS) will be held from August 2-6, 1998 in Baltimore, Maryland. In keeping with the changing nature of ecosystems around the globe, this year's theme is "Managing Human-Impacted Systems." Featured Symposia cover diverse topics, including "Current issues: wholesale transformation of coastal ecosystems by human action" and "Population genetics and gene flow in tropical plants," among others. The meeting's site provides details on meeting dates and locations, opening ceremony, participating societies and websites, registration fees, featured symposia, and additional information. [LXP]

Computational Methods in Toxicology
Computational Methods in Toxicology, April 20-22, 1998, is a workshop sponsored by the Air Force Research Laboratory and the Aeronautical Systems Center. The workshop will cover four topics: research applications of QSAR/SARs; tools for development of new QSAR/SARs; molecular modeling and simulation in toxicology; and commercially available software products for toxicity prediction. Deadline for submission of abstracts is March 16, 1998 and for registration March 31, 1998. [KH]
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New Data
Detailed Images from Europa Point to Slush Below Surface--NASA JPL
Nine Galileo images of the Jovian moon Europa taken in December of 1997 have recently been released by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's Jet Propulsion Laboroatory. The images support the theory that slush or liquid water exists below the surface of the satellite. The site contains links to the images (available in several resolutions and formats) and descriptive captions, along with further discussion of the slush/liquid water theory. [JS]
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Angiosperm DNA C-Values Database--RBG Kew
The 1992 Global Convention on Biological Diversity (Rio de Janeiro) specified the need to make biodiversity data available "despite imperfections, rather than holding back information until more polished products are completed." Few organizations have done so. This Royal Botanic Gardens (Kew, UK) genome biodiversity database is one valuable exception. Founded in 1759, the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew has built its unique collections which now include 6 million dried plant specimens - covering 90% of the world's plant species; 40,000 living plant taxa - estimated as 10% of the world's flora; and 80,000 fungi and artifacts of plant origin. Known best among botanists as a global resource for definitively identifying, classifying, and naming plants and fungi, Kew also maintains this database on DNA C-values. To access this free, searchable database, the user must provide an email address as well as the genus of interest; search results include Taxon, Family, 4C DNA amount (pg), and entry number/reference citation, listed separately for each species. [LXP]
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Carbon Dioxide Emission Estimates--ORNL CDIAC
The Carbon Dioxide Information Analysis Center of the Oak Ridge National Laboratory provides this new data on carbon dioxide emissions from fossil fuel burning, hydraulic cement production, and gas flaring in 1995. Data for one degree grid cells can be downloaded from the site in addition to code for analysis of the data. [KH]
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Trade and Environment Database (TED)
Conceived of by Dr. James R. Lee of American University's School of International Service, this ambitious project seeks "to provide a common basis for researchers and policy makers to understand issues of trade and the environment." The site includes a searchable database of over 450 case studies, organized by region or date. Forty newly-added TED case studies include the "Chilean Forest Preservation and the Project River Condor," the "Shrimp and Turtle" case study (2nd study), and "Non-indigenous Species Threaten the Habitat of Florida's Flora and Fauna," among others. Educators seeking examples of environmental/development conflicts will appreciate the care that has been taken to present several sides of each issue. Of added utility, the site includes several links to related case studies, as well as links to the Inventory of Conflict and Environment (ICE) case studies, which seek to provide "a common basis and method (for) looking at issues of conflict and environment." [LXP]
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In the News
The Future of Oil
1. The Global Hubbert Peak
2. Fossil Energy Web Network--DOE
3. Energy Information Administration--DOE
4. A New Approach to Estimating Hydrocarbon Resources--USGS
5. Ranking of the World's Oil and Gas Provinces by Known Petroleum Volumes--USGS
This week's In The News features five sites with information related to a Special Report in the March 1998 issue of Scientific American. The report focuses on oil production and predicted oil supplies world wide. The lead Scientific American article predicts an end to cheap oil within the next decade and presents three reasons for the difference between previous forecasts. The three reasons noted by the authors are: 1) errors in previous estimates, 2) the mistaken assumption of constant production, and 3) the overlooked theory of diminishing returns. Accompanying articles discuss new sources of oil, such as oil sands and shales and the use of natural gas as a fuel.

(1) The Global Hubbert Peak site, provided by EcoSystems, Inc., is a compilation of information concerning world oil supplies. The site contains papers and work from oil experts, information on natural gas and alternatives to hydrocarbon fuels, and articles discussing the future of oil. (2) The Fossil Energy Web Network is the homepage for the Fossil Energy Program at the US Department of Energy. The site features information on technologies being investigated, publications from the Program, international news, regulatory issues, and federal oil reserves. (3) The Energy Information Administration (EIA) is part of the US Department of Energy and is responsible for statistical and analytical analyses pertaining to energy resources. The site provides links to publications and data for a variety of fuels, information on international, state-wide, and environmental energy issues, and an email alert service. (4) Estimating Hydrocarbons is a fact sheet produced by the US Geological Survey; it describes a method developed for estimating the amount of undiscovered hydrocarbon reserves using fractal statistics. (5) Ranking of the World's Oil and Gas Provinces is also from the USGS and reports on the world's petroleum volumes. [KH]
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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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