Research news and notes from the National Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics and Education
Digital Library (NSDL) Program [Back Issues]

The Whiteboard Report
August 2002, Issue #21



Gender & Science Digital Library Presents at AGELE 2002 Conference
August 2002-- The Gender & Science Digital Library project (GSDL) * from the Gender and Diversities Institute at Education Development Center, Inc., presented a conference session at the Association for Gender Equity Leadership in Education (AGELE) national conference in San Diego, CA July 10-13, 2002. The mission of AGELE is to provide leadership in the identification and infusion of gender equity in all educational programs and processes and within parallel equity concerns including, but not limited to age, disability, ethnicity, national origin, race, religion, sexual orientation and socio-economic status. The theme of this year's conference was "Gender Equity Leadership in Education: Honoring Our Past and Shaping Our Future." Sarita Nair, project director for the GSDL, used the GSDL as a case study in presenting an in-depth session on the history of the NSDL initiative and its key components, and a talking tour on DL library development issues. The AGELE conference provided a valuable and highly visible dissemination point for information on the NSDL portal launch and related projects. Attendees of the conference included a broad range of prospective NSDL users, gender equity researches and experts, K-12 teachers, higher education faculty from a variety of disciplines, and school district, university and community college administrators. GSDL has also been selected to submit papers to a monograph on K-12 digital libraries sponsored by the Education Resources Information Center (ERIC) The paper will be co-authored by Katherine Hanson, PI for the GSDL and Director of the GDI, and Sarita Nair, project director for the GSDL. The ERIC monograph will focus on unique development challenges faced by K-12 digital libraries, the potential of all digital libraries to transform K-12 teaching and learning, and design and implementation considerations for K-12 digital library users. It will offer NSDL projects like the GSDL a unique opportunity to disseminate their learnings on the assessment of K-12 user needs, and special considerations in the development of collections and services that will foster community-building and new knowledge creation in the K-12 community. The monograph will be available in 2003. The GSDL is a global and cross-disciplinary resource of interactive gender and science resources for K-12, higher education, women's studies, teacher preparation programs, and informal learning environments.
Related Link:

Science Magazine Spotlights Washington & Lee University's Nuclear Energy Web Site
August 2002-- The July 12 issue of highly regarded Science magazine has recommended to its readers the Alsos Digital Library for Nuclear Issues, created by Washington & Lee Chemistry Professor Frank A. Settle, Jr. The Library was also highlighted in the "Digital Briefs" feature of the July 15, 2002, issue of Chemical and Engineering News, (page 40), the offical publication of the American Chemical Society. The Alsos Digital Library for Nuclear Issues at , was launched this spring by Settle, Elizabeth R. Blackmer, the site?s senior editor, and Thomas P. Whaley, a W&L computer science professor. The Alsos Digital Library for Nuclear Issues is part of the National Science Foundation?s National Science Digital Library Program which is designed to create, organize and install high-quality educational resources on the Internet. The Alsos site, created through a $250,000 NSF grant, provides information about a rich array of authoritative and reliable materials drawn from sources worldwide. The Alsos site features hundreds of annotations of books, articles, videos, photographic collections, CD ROMS and links to other Web sites to help users track how the development of nuclear energy has and continues to influence the evolution of science, technology, domestic politics, international relations and the arts and humanities. The site is aimed at both academic and general audiences, with particular attention paid to making it a user-friendly resource for students and teachers from middle school through college.
Related Link:

What Are the Alternatives to Peer Review?
August 2002-- William Y. Arms, PI, NSDL Cornell Core Integration, says that the Web offers several alternatives to peer review for ensuring the proliferation of accurate information in the world, and he focuses on "volunteer review" as a new and successful approach in his article entitled "Quality Control in Scholarly Publishing On The Web" in the University of Michigan Press [Journal of Electronic Publishing], August 2002 issue:
Related Link:

K-12 Opportunity
August 2002-- [AASL Knowledge Quest], the practioner journal of the American Association of School Librarians (part of the American Library Association--ALA), would like to feature the NSDL in an upcoming issue. Marcia Mardis will be the guest editor for this issue. Mardis suggests that this is a great opportunity for NSDL projects with K-12 impact to reach a vital force in the integration of new resources into the classroom--media specialists. Projects with a K-12 focus are encouraged to submit articles of about *1000-1500 words* in length by *September 1, 2002*. The issue will be released, digitally and in print, in either Winter or Spring. The audience for this journal is comprised mainly of media specialists and teacher librarians working in schools. Therefore, articles should accentuate existing work and include pointers to existing websites and resources. Examples of how resources have been used by K-12 teachers are especially recommended. The idea is to get future NSDL users aware of the quality of existing NSDL project work as well as learn what a collaboration of these projects will offer. Authors are encouraged to review the Knoweldge Quest publication guidelines at: and contact Marcia for other important publication details. Requests for more information and paper submissions should be directed to: Marcia A. Mardis Project Director, Michigan Teacher Network Co-PI NSDL TeacherLIB? Project
Related Link:

NSDL Annual Meeting December 3-4, 2002
August 2002-- Just a reminder to hold your calendars open for the December 2002 NSDL Annual Meeting. The meeting opens Monday evening, December 2, with a poster session for projects, followed by two days (December 3-4) focused on information, celebration (of the initial release), and community. The final morning, December 5, will be devoted to governance meetings, with the Policy Committee and subcommittes meeting to debrief and set agendas for new priorities. The registration web page is under development, and a detailed agenda is being created with the help of NSDL standing committee members. Stay tuned for more details! --Jeanne Narum and Susan Jesuroga

NSDL Marketing Information Now Available
August 2002-- Thanks to our friends at the Nova Scotia Drama League and Dean Krafft, Cornell, the NSDL has aquired the domain name. Clicking on takes you to "About NSDL" which is, in effect, an electronic brochure. Please refer people to the site for basic information, contacts, downloads of logos and power point templates, news, documents and the NSDL flash tour. Users know best, so send any suggestions you have for "About NSDL" to Brochures, posters (12 x 18" and 24 x 36"), the NSDL flash tour on mini cds, business cards with central office contact information and a limited supply of lanyards are available. Our goal, in these four short months before the preliminary roll out at the December Annual Meeting in Washington, is to raise the visibility of NSDL and to send interested people to []. Please distribute NSDL materials at meetings you?ll be attending. Contact Donna Cummings,, phone: 303 497-2940, to arrange for delivery. --Kaye Howe
Related Link: [].

Be the First Kid on Your Block . . .
August 2002-- To be one of the NSDL trendsetters. Update your web site with the new NSDL logo (available for download at []), and change all your old links to point to the library?s permanent home at AND if you are one of the first 10 sites to make the changes and respond to [Susan Jesuroga], she will send you one NSDL poster and two totally cool NSDL.ORG lanyards (that hang around your neck and hold badges at conferences, or your drivers license at the airport!). To be eligible, email [Susan] with the URL of your site and your shipping address. If you are one of the first lucky ten, your NSDL goodies will be on their way.
Related Link: [Susan]

TODAY: Call for Participation in Addressing NSDL Sustainability Issues
August 2002-- The mission of the Sustainability Standing Committee is to facilitate the development of an NSDL that will continue to thrive in the long term, through diverse funding streams. Many sustainability issues that this committee will address, such as effective business models, will be of interest to individual projects, as well as to the NSDL as a whole. Learn more about the Sustainability Standing Committee, and its goals and tasks, at its NSDL website: The first "all hands" teleconference for the committee is scheduled for 1 pm ET, Thursday, August 1. This meeting will begin to outline committee issues and processes. Representatives of all NSDL projects are urged to to join the call and to participate in committee discussions. Dial in information is included below: Time: 1 pm EDT, Thursday August 1 Dial in: 888 412 7888 participant code: 85472#.
Related Link:

2002 UMUC Intellectual Property in Academia Workshop Series
August 2002-- The Center for Intellectual Property at the University of Maryland University College (UMUC) is hosting an asynchronous online workshop series that is of interest to faculty, university counsel, librarians, instructional design and information professionals Each workshop will last approximately three weeks, providing the participants with an in-depth understanding of core intellectual property issues facing higher education. The Shrinking Public Domain September 16- October 4, 2002 Moderated by Laura (Lolly) Gasaway, Esq Director, Law Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill Academic Integrity Compliance on College Campuses October 28 - November 15, 2002 Moderated by Diane M. Waryold, PhD? Executive Director of Center for Academic Integrity, Program Administrator of the Kenan Institute for Ethics, Duke University Preventing Plagiarism in the Online and face-2-face Classrooms February 10-February 28, 2003 Moderated by Gary Pavela, Esq Director of Judicial Programs and Student Ethical Development at the University of Maryland-College Park These online workshops will include course readings, chats and online discussions. Participants will receive daily response and feedback from the workshop moderators. Please visit the web site for all course objectives: register online- For additional information call 301 985-7777.
Related Link:

Symposium on the Role of Scientific and Technical Data and Information in the Public Domain
August 2002-- To be held September 5-6, 2002 at the National Academy of Sciences Auditorium, 2100 C Street NW, in Washington, DC., the Symposium will bring together leading experts and managers from the public and private sectors who are involved in the creation, dissemination, and use of STI to discuss: the role, value, and limits of public-domain STI in the research and education context; the various legal, economic, and technological pressures on producers of public domain STI, and their potential effects on research and education; the existing and proposed approaches for preserving the public domain or providing "open access" to STI in the United States; and other important issues in this area that may benefit from further analysis.The meeting will be free and open to the public, but advance registration is required. For additional information and registration, please visit:,or contact the project director, Paul Uhlir, 202 334-2807; email:
Related Link:

Forward and Back from JCDL 2002
August 2002-- On August 22. 1995 Clifford Lynch, Coalition for Networked Information [CNI], and Hector Garcia-Molina, Stanford University, gave a report entitled [Interoperability, Scaling, and the Digital Libraries Research Agenda] for The Information Infrastructure Technology and Applications (IITA) Digital Libraries Workshop. As the Joint Conference on Digital Libraries (JCDL) drew to a close in Portland, Oregon last month the authors revisited some of their ideas within the context of Digital Library research progress during the last seven years at the DLI2/IMLS/NSDL Principal Investigators Meeting facilitated by Stephen Griffin of the National Science Foundation Division of Information and Intelligent Systems. Scaleability and interoperability were key issues then as they are now. 'Everything changes and everything stays the same' with some notable exceptions. Lynch noted that: 1) metadata is now considered to be a structural component; 2) the current large installed user base on the Internet makes rapid change challenging; 3) digital collections and digital libraries may have more similarities than was previously thought; and 4) private investment in digital library systems has incrased. There has been incremental progress made on digital preservation issues, but funding and maintaining systems is even more complex given the advance of various media types and formats since 1995. Managing copyright online may be a pathway to sustainability and part of the answer to preservation, but knowing how to do this is no closer than it was seven years ago. [The Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting] is a 'tool for federating,' but has yet to be fully employed for a large-scale interoperable federated digital library. Personal libraries like Napster are a new and potentially rich form of digital library that do not scale and are under attack by industries who feel that personal aggregation technical systems put their copyrights in jeopardy. While metadata still seems to be a fruitful pathway to interoperability it is poorly understood and has brought more questions than answers into focus related to costs, benefits, and automated methods of generation. Hector Garcia-Molina called for a collaborative Digital Libraries Initiative Phase 2 (DLI2) summary white paper on the current state of cyber infrastructure. He suggests that a new report will provide a road map for the next phase of DL research building on successes such as Google, OAI, peer-to-peer, XML, and one big digital library program ? [NSDL] -- Carol Terrizzi.
Related Link: [The Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting]

The International Coalition of Library Consortia Issues Privacy Guidelines
August 2002-- The International Coalition of Library Consortia (ICOLC) has announced the release of new privacy guidelines for electronic resources vendors. ICOLC officials say the authoring of the guidelines reflects the dynamic nature of information services to libraries and the need for library consortia to influence the practices of the vendor community on a global basis. Specifically, the guidelines focus on the privacy interests of member libraries' users and informs companies with which libraries do business about what is acceptable in the products and services that they license. A cardinal principle emphasized by the guidelines is that the privacy of library users with respect to their information seeking is to be protected. It recommends that publishers not disclose information about any individual users of its products and not deny an authorized user access to its product on account of that user's election not to permit distribution of personal information to a third party. The publisher is asked to post a privacy policy statement on the online site and to maintain control of the site to prevent any violation of the privacy policy by a third party. The guidelines are initially endorsed by 61 library consortia from around the world. More endorsements will be added as received. ICOLC was founded in 1996 as an international, informal group currently comprising over 160 library consortia in North America, Europe, Australia, Asian, and Africa, serving all types and sizes of libraries. The complete text, with endorsing consortia can be found at -- Library Journal Academic Newswire, July 25, 2002.
Related Link:

Library of Congress Authority Data Files Now Available
August 2002-- On July 1, 2002, LC made its authority data available via the Web. This service, known as LC Authorities, provides access to LC's name, subject, and title cataloging authority records, (including series authority records) for search, display, and download. The address for this interface to LC's Database is: LC Authorities is intended to be a resource for technical services librarians engaged in cataloging and other activities that benefit from authority control, cross references, and standardized vocabulary. Not included with this release are Z39.50 functionality; the full MARC 21 character set for display and download of authority data; and the approximately 2,300 subject subdivision records in the Library of Congress Subject Heading file. LC will collaborate with Endeavor Information Systems, Inc., our ILS vendor, to add Z39.50 functionality and these other features in a future release. Z39.50 is an information retrieval (client/server-based) protocol that supports searching and retrieving of information among remote databases. LC Authorities is intended to be a permanent service, offered free of charge to users. During the first phase of this implementation LC will be gathering feedback from users to evaluate its usefulness and determine how to improve its features. Users should send comments to: A PowerPoint? presentation on LC Authorities is available at: . A 'weblog' by Gary Price includes sample searches to help folks try out this vast file is available at: -- from the Integrated Library Systems Office, Library of Congress via the [OAI Implementers] list.
Related Link: [OAI Implementers]

ACLU Launches Suit Against Filters
August 2002-- In a suit that could have broad ramifications for the digital age, the American Civil Liberties Union has filed suit in a Massachusetts federal court on behalf of Harvard researcher Ben Edelman, seeking to reaffirm Edelman's constitutional right to examine how an Internet blocking software works. (Edelman testified as a plaintiffs' expert in the successful Children's Internet Protection Act litigation.) The ACLU seeks a declaratory judgment reaffirming Edelman's First Amendment right to break the encryption of Internet-blocking software made by N2H2 and to reverse engineer the program to examine its design. Reverse engineering, a common practice in the software and hardware industries, is the process of taking something apart in order to understand its construction. However, under the Digital Millennium Copyright Act, it is illegal to create a tool that breaks a program's encryption, a move that essentially prevents computer researchers from reverse engineering, harming innovation, and according to the suit, consumers' rights. ACLU officials say that the lawsuit is relevant not only for researchers, but for thousands of schools and libraries that want to know what their blocking software is actually blocking. N2H2 is used by a significant number of libraries, 40 percent of the public schools market, and by at least five state governments. "Especially when governments in the U.S. and abroad mandate the use of blocking programs, the public has a right to know what is being blocked, and I believe I have a right to uncover this information without being subject to a corporate lawsuit," said Edelman. Critics maintain that blocking software often doesn't work properly, blocking sites that should be permitted. N2H2 says it's willing to unblock sites that users contend are wrongly blocked. But as the law now stands, consumers are not able to find out how the programs work. "The copyright law says you can look under the hood under certain circumstances but you can't build a tool needed to open the hood," said Ann Beeson, the ACLU lead attorney. The legal complaint is online at -- Library Journal Academic Newswire, July 29, 2002.
Related Link:



NSDL at JCDL 2002
August 2002-- Call for papers for JCDL 2003. The NSDL community could be found in full force at the JCDL last month in Portland, Oregon. NSDL participants helped author 17 [papers] and appeared on several panels.
Related Link:

JCDL 2002 Vannevar Bush Award Winning Paper
August 2002-- Donna Bergmark, a member of the Cornell Digital Library Research Group, received the Vannevar Bush Award for Best Paper at the ACM/IEEE Joint Conference in Digital Libraries (JCDL) in Portland last month. Her paper, Collection Synthesis, describes her research on focused web crawling as a means of automatically synthesizing document collections from resources on the Web. This research continues with another paper that has been accepted at the European Digital Library Conference (ECDL) in Rome in September.
Related Link:

KCRW Politics of Culture: The Future of Libraries in the Digital Age
August 2002-- Join Bruce Henstell for a discussion on libraries in the digital age on The Politics of Culture. This audio-streamed program from July 30 is archived and accessable from the station's website.
Related Link:

University of Maryland to Launch The International Children's Digital Library (ICDL)
August 2002-- The goal of ICDL is to revisit Andrew Carnegie's vision of providing free books to citizens using technological advancements to strengthen that dream. ICDL seeks to provide all children with direct access to the resources that are essential to enlightened citizenship: literature, knowledge, and information.
Related Link:

$3M Grant to Boost Open Access from George Soros' Open Society Institute
August 2002-- "The vast potential benefits of open access to research and researchers are already there... but the subsidy lowers the entry barriers for would-be open-access initiatives," said Open access advocate Professor Stevan Harnad of the University of Southampton, UK.--Ivan Noble, BBC News, February 14, 2002
Related Link:


August Inspiration 1
August 2002-- Digital Morphology, part of the National Science Foundation Digital Libraries Initiative, develops and serves unique 2D and 3D visualizations of the internal and external structure of living and extinct vertebrates, and a growing number of 'invertebrates'. The Digital Morphology library contains nearly a terabyte of imagery of natural history specimens that are important to education and central to ongoing cutting-edge research efforts.
Related Link:

August Inspiration 2
August 2002-- The Cuneiform Digital Library Initiative (CDLI) represents the efforts of an international group of Assyriologists, museum curators and historians of science to make available through the internet the form and content of cuneiform tablets dating from the beginning of writing, ca. 3200 B.C., until the end of the third millennium.
Related Link:

Published from 2000 to September 2009, NSDL Whiteboard Report Archives provide access to prior issues of the bi-weekly newsletter published by NSDL. To subscribe to current news and information about NSDL, go to the NSDL Community Network site, register as a user, subscribe to and participate in selected features found there. For more information contact Eileen McIlvain