Scitable, a free online science library from Nature Publishing Group


"…explore Nature Education’s Scitable, a free online science library published by editors at Nature Publishing Group.  Scitable is used every day by thousands of faculty, graduate students, researchers, and science writers. Scitable is a scientist-authored, cutting-edge learning resource you can recommend with confidence." 

New additions:

  • Essentials of Genetics, a free course on the basic concepts of genetics, featuring high quality animations, clear explanations, and links to biographies and research papers.
  • 30+ new Readings on important topics in genetics, each written and reviewed by leading researchers and filled with links to research milestones.
  • Scitable Classrooms, a free online research space that teaching faculty can create in less than 5 minutes. Scitable Classrooms include news feeds, reading lists, and threaded discussions.  Watch our “how to” video that shows faculty how to set up a classroom

 From today’s email:  Nature Publishing Group []

DSpace at Princeton University is open for business!

DataSpace can now be used to store papers and data.  From the homepage:

"DataSpace is a digital repository meant for both archiving and publicly disseminating digital data which are the result of research, academic, or administrative work performed by members of the Princeton University community. DataSpace will promote awareness of the data and address concerns for ensuring the long-term availability of data in the repository."

There are papers from 2 groups or communities available so far: 

Civil and Environmental Engineering
Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs

There is a useful "About" page, and the "Help" page gives you the mechanics of running searches using the Jakarta Lucerne search engine, which bears lots of similarities to Google.

Contact:  Mark Ratliff, Digital Repository Architect, Phone: (609) 258-0228.

BioTorrents — easier, faster exchange of science-related open-access software and datasets

The goal of BioTorrents is to allow easier and faster exchange of science-related open-access software and datasets.
BioTorrents allows scientists to rapidly share their results, datasets, and software using the popular BitTorrent file sharing technology.   (The BioTorrents website)

From Alain Borel (Bibliotheque Scientifique, Lausanne) on the CHMINF Listserv, 1/18/10,  in response to the introduction of the subject by Egon Willighagen at Uppsala Univ.:

"The distributed nature of BitTorrents sounds nice (it doesn’t matter that zillions of users start downloading stuff, since they rapidly all become data sources themselves). However, I wonder how the updates will be treated? OAI-PMH feels like a much better protocol from this point of view. Maybe OAI-PMH could be used as a wrapper for publishing and harvesting BitTorrent seeds (one seed par article)?" (A.B.)
From the website:
"The Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting (OAI-PMH) is a low-barrier mechanism for repository interoperability. Data Providers are repositories that expose structured metadata via OAI-PMH. Service Providers then make OAI-PMH service requests to harvest that metadata. OAI-PMH is a set of six verbs or services that are invoked within HTTP."
…offering Interoperability through Metadata Exchange

WorldCat, world’s largest book catalog, now lists JSTOR articles!

"JSTOR now indexed in – 18 Jan 2010

Authenticated scholars and researchers with online access to full-text content in JSTOR can now locate and connect to articles through JSTOR is a preservation archive and research platform for the academic community.

Over 4.5 million JSTOR article-level records from more than 1,000 journals, selected monographs, and other scholarly content are now indexed in, the Web destination for discovery of materials in libraries worldwide. JSTOR records are delivered in search results. Scholars and researchers using can now identify content in JSTOR and connect to the full-text using the authorisation provided by their library. is a Web destination with search and social networking features that allow information seekers to discover, localise, and personalise content from local collections and those of more than 10,000 WorldCat libraries worldwide. indexing of JSTOR metadata helps researchers easily identify resources in the collection alongside other materials relevant to their work. An authorization is required for access to full-text materials in JSTOR.

WorldCat claims to be the world’s largest database of bibliographic information built continuously by libraries around the world since 1971. Each record in the WorldCat database contains a bibliographic description of a single item or work and a list of institutions that hold the item. The institutions share these records, using them to create local catalogs, arrange interlibrary loans and conduct reference work. There are now more than 165 million records in WorldCat spanning five millennia of recorded knowledge. Like the knowledge it describes, WorldCat grows steadily. Every second, OCLC and its member libraries add seven records to WorldCat."

Source:  Knowledgespeak Newsletter.

Learn about the Haiti fault

"In response to the recent, tragic earthquake that struck southern Haiti, we have made the following papers open access (free). These papers address the Caribbean plate and the Enriquillo-Plaintain fault line and they are listed in reverse chronological order."

To read papers compiled and suggested by the Geological Society of America about the 12 Jan. 2010 Haiti Earthquake and the Enriquillo-Plaintain Fault click here:

Submitted by P. Gaspari-Bridges, the Geosciences Librarian (Princeton Univ.)

Book barcodes can be scanned on iPhone with RedLaser app

Scan a book barcode with your iPhone, see if we have it

Now thanks to a popular iPhone app called RedLaser, you can scan a book barcode and find our library results through The app shows results for our library and libraries nearby, when we have the item. Currently library results for RedLaser are for books only. Watch a 43 second YouTube video to see RedLaser’s library results in action, and then download the $1.99 app through Apple’s iTunes app store.

From today’s OCLC alert: NEW for

Predicting earthquakes — how good are we?!

Interpreting intracontinental earthquakes.

Interpreting intracontinental earthquakes. Our historical record of seismic activity is very short, by geological time scales. So extrapolating that record to predict future earthquakes can lead to nasty surprises, such as 2008’s devastating earthquake in Sichuan, China, which occurred on a fault that had seen little recent activity. Large earthquakes are typically followed byaftershocks whose frequency decays to some background level of seismicity, following an empirical relation known as Omori’s law. But determining the time scale of the decay and the baseline activity can be difficult. A new model by Seth Stein of Northwestern University and Mian Liu of the University of Missouri–Columbia posits an inverse relationship between the aftershock-sequence durations and the slip rates along faults. Large earthquakes are most common along the boundaries of tectonic plates, and the occurrences of aftershocks tend to decay quickly—within a decade or so—to a relatively high background. The relative plate motion at such boundaries can be rapid, faster than 10 mm/yr. Continental interiors, far away from plate boundaries, deform much more slowly, typically less than 1 mm/yr. And thanks to that slower rate of fault loading, aftershocks can last hundreds of years or longer, as shown in the figure. Thus, warn the researchers, interpreting continental earthquakes as steady-state seismicity can overestimate the hazard in presently active areas and underestimate it elsewhere. (S. Stein, M. Liu, Nature 462, 87, 2009.)   —RJF

From Physics Today, the "Physics Update" section, Jan. 2010

Click here to see the full table of contents for the latest issue.

Scientific Research support: funding and collaboration tools

"The NIH grabbed $10 billion of taxpayers’ funds funneled through the stimulus bill, and NIH chief Francis Collins says the money was used to save or create 50,000 research jobs. In many cases, he adds, the extra funds have kept America’s scientists in American labs." 

– here’s the story from Bloomberg

From FierceBiotech Research []  1/5/10, by John Carroll



"National networking provides opportunities for scientists to collaborate in new, exciting ways to improve abilities to uncover underlying pathways and mechanisms of biology and to develop new diagnostics, treatments and prevention strategies," said NCRR Director Barbara Alving, M.D. "The infrastructure created and implemented through these awards has the potential to greatly facilitate the pace of biomedical research nationwide."

– here’s the NIH release
– check out a list of project partner institutions here   — besides Harvard and U of Florida

Read more:

Also from FierceBiotech Research [] 11/2/09, by John Carroll