Thursday, December 27, 2007
Researchers will now be required to deposit electronic copies of their peer-reviewed articles into the National Library of Medicine’s online archive, PubMed Central. Full text articles will be publicly available and searchable in PubMed Central no later than 12 months after publication in a journal.
It is hoped that open access will make scientific results more readily available and ultimately facilitate the advancement of scientific knowledge. "This policy will directly improve the sharing of scientific findings, the pace of medical advances, and the rate of return on benefits to the taxpayer,” said Heather Joseph, Executive Director of SPARC (the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition).
More information can be found at http://www.taxpayeraccess.org/
Friday, December 21, 2007
For example, the journal impact factor for the journal Nature is reported to be 26.681 calculated from the following data:
Cites in 2006 to articles published in:
2005 = 25820
2004 = 26022
Sum = 51842
Number of articles published in:
2005 = 1065
2004 = 878
Sum = 1943
Calculation = Cites to recent articles / Number of recent articles = 51842 / 1943 = 26.681
The authors of the editorial tried to replicate the journal impact factors from data supported by Thomson Scientific (owners of the Web of Science) and were unable to report the same results. This puts into question the data supplied by Thomson Scientific and the overall validity of journal impact factors. One wonders if journal impact factors should be given the importance that they are within the scientific community given the fact that they might be calculated from suspect data.
Friday, November 16, 2007
Short and Snappy Author Rights Colloquy
Thursday, November 29
12:00 - 1:30 p.m.
Gunness Student Center Conference Room, Marcus Hall
Learn why keeping the copyright to your published work can give you more freedom to use and expose your own research.
Lunch will be provided!
To register, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Tuesday, October 09, 2007
Their Digital Library is now available to UMass Amherst patrons through the library's website - through the catalog or the databases.
From SPIE's website:
The SPIE Digital Library is the most extensive resource available on optics and photonics, providing unprecedented access to more than 230,000 technical papers from SPIE Journals and Conference Proceedings from 1990 to the present. More than 17,000 new research papers are added annually.
Contents of the SPIE Digital Library
Proceedings of SPIE: Starting at Volume 1200 (1990)*
Optical Engineering: Starting at Volume 29 (1990)
Journal of Electronic Imaging: Starting at Volume 1 (1992)
Journal of Biomedical Optics: Starting at Volume 1 (1996)
Journal of Micro/Nanolithography, MEMS, and MOEMS: Starting at Volume 1 (2002)
Journal of Applied Remote Sensing: Starting at Volume 1 (2007)
Journal of Nanophotonics: Starting at Volume 1 (2007)
* Some Proceedings volumes are not available in the SPIE Digital Library as SPIE does not have electronic rights to this material. Click here for a listing of those volumes.
For a couple of years while I was in grad school at UMass, I worked with the MacConnell maps, digitizing land use change. I was fascinated with the process and the photos. My supervisors then, Kate Jones (now at the Franklin Regional Council of Governments GIS) and David Goodwin (now at the Massachusetts Dept. of Conservation and Recreation's Forestry Management Program), told me about their long histories analyzing the photos with stereoscopes (also on display in the Map Collection). They related the history of The Raccoon Wars, which began with a prank that involved painting the black eyepieces of the stereoscopes with black ink, so that the user would finish her or his work with dark rings around the eyes. Ever since, I've been waiting to use that tactic.
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
Some of you will have personal knowledge about this, but as an onlooker, I was impressed with the range of these projects that got funded by the NSF. It is, I know, a competitive process.
Congratulations to those individuals and groups who have collectively shown that UMass Amherst is an institution doing interesting work (and we beat MIT - woohoo!). Here is the list of awardees as published in the Springfield Republican blog:
The following are the grants awarded by the National Science Foundation, and the person directing each of the funded projects.
Awarded to the University of Massachusetts:
$200,000 - A data collection project, Prashant Shenoy
$300,067 - A project in nanotechnology, Sigfrid Yngvesson
$316,365 - Research involving emulsified products (two or more liquids blended together, such as ice cream or mayonnaise), Michael Henson
$350,001 - A project in wireless networks, Donald Towsley
$404,132 - A project relating to the search of vast archives of data or information, W. Bruce Croft
$442,000 - Research in Internet running on light, Tilman Wolf
$513,600 - Biofuels research, George Huber
$597,503 - A project involving the teaching of science, Morton Sternheim
$600,000 - Research into the transfer of data on the Internet, Arunkumar Venkataramani
$979,098 - Research into the teaching of science, John Clement
$1.5 million - Renewable energy research, Sankaran Thayumanavan
$3 million - A project in cellular engineering training, Susan C. Roberts
To Smith College:
$125,240 - Computer science research, Ruth Haas
$315,760 - Research in biogeochemistry, Elizabeth Jamieson
Tuesday, August 21, 2007
In my previous career in public health, I became a Certified Lead Inspector for housing. In New England, with its older housing stock, lead paint is a persistent issue. While Europe banned the residential use of lead paint in the 1920s, the US didn't until the Consumer Product Safety Commission issued a regulation in 1978 prohibiting its use in residential settings. At first, I thought that flaking lead paint was the big problem, since kids often eat the flakes (Apparently, lead lends a sweet taste to substances, which is why the Romans used it to treat wine.), but it is also present in house dust as a result of friction on window sashes and door jambs. Lead from gasoline contributed to the environmental load as well.
Here are some UMass Library databases you can search for more information on lead in the environment and it's effects on humans and other animals. Remember that you may have to use your OIT login information if you want to connect from off-campus.
Food Science and Technology Abstracts
Kirk Othmer Encyclopedia of Chemical Technology
PubMed: UMass Amherst subscription
Web of Science
If you're interested in the biochemistry of lead, try Beilstein.
Thursday, August 02, 2007
In a statement, a Science spokesperson said that: “AAAS shares the belief that it is now time to assume full responsibility for maintaining a complete electronic archive of its flagship publication.”
Wednesday, July 11, 2007
... The hegemony of English is just one of many forces shaping undergraduate STEM education. This special issue looks at the topic by focusing on the lives of  faculty members in a dozen countries on six continents. The group is meant to be representative of scientists teaching large numbers of undergraduates around the world. The list is skewed toward the most industrialized countries but also includes those in which the scientific infrastructure is developing rapidly. An accompanying map presents some basic information about higher education in each country.
For an additional perspective, Science invited three distinguished educators to explore the issues facing undergraduate STEM education. Excerpts of their comments appear in this issue; the complete discussion is available at www.sciencemag.org/sciext/undergrad_education07. This issue also marks the debut of the Signal Transduction Knowledge Environment Journal Club, as well as three Teaching Resources.
We hope that you'll find the entire package compelling enough to alter your own worldview of undergraduate education. If it does, please let us know at www.sciencemag.org/sciext/eletters."
Thursday, June 28, 2007
Chemical of the Week is one of my favorite sites. I always learn something here, and it often appeals to a family affinity with explosives (stories for another time). It's geared to enlightened non-specialists, so anyone can enjoy it.
Tuesday, June 12, 2007
Tuesday, May 29, 2007
It seems lately that the organization of stuff, especially information, is a hot topic. Last year, it was Peter Morville's Ambient Findability. David Weinberger gave a 57- minute talk on the Google campus on May 10 on the topic of his new book, Everything is Miscellaneous: The Power of the New Digital Disorder . The talk is great (I haven't read the book yet-- it's on my desk now.), but I had an issue with some of his comments in the Google talk about librarians, whom he says he admires, and I believe him. He said that librarians (and scientists, shop owners, publishers, everyone) try to order information, a task he sees as futile. He's right, it is futile, and the digital disorder in his subtitle has shown us that. My argument with him is that librarians have figured that out already. We use keywords, hyperlinking, folksonomies, tagging, social networks-- all that stuff. There is still a use for the LC classification and other schemes for print material and non-digital native objects (so we can find their physical selves), but librarians bring at least a representation of them into the disordered digital world via their metadata.
I'm really excited to be a librarian right now. The whole notion of what the library is changes constantly, and it's a lot of work to keep up with students' use of technology and their consequent expectations. Libraries are learning to be more nimble and adapt quickly. At the same time, we realize that most of our users employ only basic strategies with their new electronic tools-- usually just enough to perform a single task. That's where we can help, but more on that later...
Thursday, May 10, 2007
Friday, April 27, 2007
- "Discern the highest value nanoelectronics standards to provide maximum leverage to the industry by providing a platform of common definitions, processes and technologies.
- Identify a small set of near-term standards to jump start nanoelectronics standards development. Frame these standards (define their scope and purpose) to accelerate working group formation and progress. Build momentum within the industry by creating a few quick wins consistent with the longer range standards strategy.
- Complement, not replace, existing industry roadmaps and knowledge bases.
- Provide a framework for efficient communication and collaboration among industry members. Reduce barriers to industry convergence and efficient commerce.
- Speed the development and deployment of high value nanoelectronics standards; consistent with the maturity of processes and technologies.
- Create an extensible and living framework by which nanoelectronics standards development may be managed proactively, strategically and efficiently"
Thursday, April 12, 2007
Search like an expert! This handy guide lists the major search tags and field qualifiers for advanced PubMed searching. Keep it next to your computer for easy reference.
This guide is intended to be customized with your library's logo and contact information, folded in half and laminated. Don't have a laminator? No problem. It also makes a nice one page handout.
Or better yet... customize and post it on your web site!
Check out Boston University Medical Center's customized version at: http://med-libwww.bu.edu/pdf/pubmedfieldtags.pdf
Thanks to Michelle Eberle - Consumer Health Information Coordinator - National Network of Libraries of Medicine - New England - University of Massachusetts Medical School - for this information.
Tuesday, April 10, 2007
“Researchers can then view the full object, including all caption and label text. Results can be easily saved or imported and used for presentations, lectures, or research.”
More than one million object records have been indexed covering over 880 different journals from a variety of publishers. It is projected that over two million objects will be indexed by the end of the year.
Three other forthcoming Illustrata resources include image databases for the fields of Technology, Social Sciences and Arts & Humanities.
Please let Maxine Schmidt (email@example.com) know your impression of Illustrata: Natural Sciences.
Monday, March 12, 2007
It also says that it is "indexed, linked, and inter-operable" with GeoRef. Right now, GSW is offering the content of the journals published by the founding member organizations: American Association of Petroleum Geologists (AAPG), American Geological Institute (AGI), Geological Society of America (GSA), The Geological Society of London (GSL), Mineralogical Society of America (MSA), Society for Sedimentary Geology (SEPM), and Society of Exploration Geophysicists (SEG).
"GeoScienceWorld (GSW) is a nonprofit corporation formed by a group of leading geoscientific organizations for the purpose of making geoscience research and related information easily and economically available via the Internet. GSW is an unprecedented collaboration of six leading earth science societies and one institute."
Be aware, though, that because this is a trial, you won't find the handy little red SFX links that will take you to the full text sources for other journals. To get those, go through the Library's webpage to GeoRef, where you will be properly authenticated.
Let Maxine Schmidt (firstname.lastname@example.org) know what you think of GSW.
Tuesday, March 06, 2007
From the "About" section of the CSH Protocols Website:
Cold Spring Harbor Protocols is a definitive, interactive source of new and classic research techniques. The database is fully searchable by keyword and subject, and it has many novel features—such as discussion forums and personal folders—made possible by online publication. Its coverage includes cell and molecular biology, genetics, bioinformatics, protein science, and imaging. Protocols are presented step-by-step and edited in the style that has made Molecular Cloning, Antibodies, Cells and many other CSH manuals essential to the work of scientists worldwide. Protocols will be continuously expanded, updated, and annotated by the originators and users of the techniques.
If you have any questions or comments, please contact the ISEL Library staff.
Friday, March 02, 2007
UMass Amherst Digital Quadrangle Series Colloquium: " Showcasing Research and Teaching in the 21st Century: A Digital Approach"
NEWS RELEASE: FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE DATE: 03/1/07
CONTACT: LESLIE SCHALER, COMMUNICATION ASST., (413) 545-0162
The event will mark the official debut of ScholarWorks@UMass
David Shulenburger is active nationally and internationally as an advocate for reform in the areas of scholarly communication and academic accreditation. Shulenburger previously held the positions of Provost and Executive Vice Chancellor at the
The second half of the program includes two panel discussions. In the first, “The ScholarWorks Track: A Panel of Case Studies,” faculty members will discuss the adoption of ScholarWorks and its impact on their research and teaching. Representatives from the Center for Teaching, Office for Research, Graduate School, and UMass Press will serve on the second panel, “Tools and Policies: Getting to Your Destination.” Discussion topics will include intellectual property, the potential for transforming teaching models, the electronic master’s theses project, and open access from the perspective of UMass Press.
This second annual Digital Quadrangle Series Colloquium is sponsored by the UMass Amherst Libraries, Office for Research, Center for Teaching, and the
For more information, contact Marilyn Billings, 545-6891, or email@example.com.
Friday, February 23, 2007
Librarians and other information mavens have long wondered about Google's relevancy algorithms, which Google regards as a trade secret. We like to know how to make our search strategies as efficient as possible, and knowing how the search engine works would obviously be useful, but as a commercial enterprise, Google doesn't want to help people 'game' the system. So this explanation is meant to be funny, but at the same time, it is twitting their critics.
The results of the survey will be used to help assess and improve the UMass Amherst Libraries’ services, collections, and facilities. The results will also indicate how UMass Amherst library services compare to other institutions of similar size and mission. It will allow the Libraries to benchmark its results against those of other colleges and universities to determine best practices and indicate where to concentrate improvements for UMass Amherst users. UMass Amherst is among over 200 libraries participating in this year's survey.
In 2004, the UMass Amherst Libraries conducted a LibQUAL+™ survey, contributing to the Libraries’ initiating many improvements, particularly in the Du Bois Library. Improvements include more electronic resources, increased hours to 24 hours/five days a week, increased wireless access, group study rooms, comfortable chairs, additional computers, scanners, a fax machine, and vending machines on the Lower Level, quiet study spaces on Floors 2 and 3, a renovated lobby with a coffee shop, book delivery on campus, and more flexible lending policies.
LibQUAL+ ™ is a rigorously tested web-based survey administered by the Association of Research Libraries (ARL).
For more information, contact Jan Higgins in the Library Office, at 545-6868 or firstname.lastname@example.org. More information about the survey is available at www.library.umass.edu/assessment/libqual.html.
Tuesday, February 20, 2007
And yes, this "dancing crane" was folded from a single sheet without cuts. Lang's website has images of his work, many with crease patterns which (theoretically) one could use to reproduce the figure.