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

The Whiteboard Report
November 2002, Issue #24



NSDL Register and Login
November 2002-- Users will register and login to the NSDL through the Access Management System developed by Core Integration partners at Columbia University. The systen enables federated identity management allowing web content providers to establish relationships with subscribers on an individual, institutional, or other basis. Subscribers can locally manage their personal or institutional data. In the first release of the NSDL, content providers (origin sites) and subscribers (target sites) must have a pre-existing peer relationship. It doesn't help to have inaccessible content, nor does it help to have users login without receiving benefits from authenticating. To develop a Library with the depth and breadth of resources required by teachers and students the NSDL will continue to develop an Access Management System that provides benefits for both users and information providers. A growing variety of content that is both open to users and protected by content providers will create a Library that meets the science, technology, engineering and mathematics educational needs of students and teachers in the new century. For more information about the NSDL Access Management System contact Coulumbia University PI Kate Wittenberg [] Read more about Shibboleth, the technology behind the NSDL Access Management System, at
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IMS Global Learning Consortium and WGBH Boston Publish Guidelines for Creating Accessible Online Lea
November 2002-- Boston, MA. September 19, 2002. A groundbreaking collaboration among international players in the online learning field has resulted in a set of guidelines to educate the eLearning community about the challenges that people with disabilities face in accessing online education, and to provide solutions and resources to solve them. Major support of these efforts is provided by the "Learning Anywhere Anytime Partnerships" program of the U.S. Department of Education. "IMS Guidelines for Creating Accessible Learning Technologies" is a joint publication of the IMS Global Learning Consortium, and the CPB/WGBH National Center for Accessible Media (NCAM), the research and development division of the Media Access Group at WGBH Boston, a U.S. public broadcaster with a thirty-year history of developing access solutions for mass media. The IMS Guidelines are available on the Web in a screen-reader friendly format as well as in PDF at and are expected to be an invaluable resource for a broad range of stakeholders in online education, including educators providing online learning materials, developers of learning software such as learning management systems and educational software, and educational publishers, content authors, authoring tool developers and parents, advocates and students with disabilities themselves.
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Green Digital Library News
November 2002-- The Green's Function Research and Education Enhancement Network [(GREEN) Digital Library] has recently formed a partnership with the Electronic Journal of Boundary Elements (EJBE). The GREEN DL and the EJBE journal will point to one another?s sites to encourage a broader outreach to the Green?s functions and boundary element method communities. Accepted submissions to the Electronic Journal of Boundary Elements will be included in the GREEN Digital Library with DC metadata records included in the NSDL Metadata Repository via OAI. The primary goal of the EJBE is to provide fast, free, and world wide access to high quality research on all aspects of the Boundary Element Method (also known as the Boundary Integral Equation Method). This includes mathematical analysis of boundary integral equations, development and analysis of numerical algorithms, and presentation of applications in science and engineering. By exploiting the capabilities of the Internet, it will be possible for publications to include color plots and videos, important to display the results for increasingly complex application calculations. In addition to including the primary full-length archival research and review articles, the EJBE will also serve as a fast and inexpensive way to disseminate appropriate conference and workshop proceedings. Ideas and suggestions from the community to make the EJBE a more useful resource are encouraged. For example, one possibility under consideration is to establish a software repository for code that is of general interest. An article entitled ?NSF-NSDL GREEN Project: A Digital Library Partnership of Academia, Government, and Industry? recently appeared in Issues in Science and Technology Librarianship, providing information concerning other partnerships formed between the GREEN project and academia, government, and industry. The significance of Green's functions across numerous disciplines is discussed in the article as well as primary project goals and achievements to date.
Related Link: [(GREEN) Digital Library]

New Research Project: Effective Access--Using Digital Libraries to Enhance High School Teaching in S
November 2002-- The [Gender and Science Digital Library] project will be used as a test bed for a new digital library project from the [Gender & Diversities Institute] at Education Development Center, Inc. (EDC). The new project entitled ?Effective Access ? Using Digital Libraries to Enhance High School Teaching in STEM? will conduct research on the following issues: ? How do high school STEM teachers use, and could they use digital libraries for their own professional development and in their classes? ? What types of software tools, lesson templates, and support help do teachers use to make effective use of library resources and foster integration of those resources into the classroom? This NSF-funded, 18-month long project will be led by principal investigators Katherine Hanson, Director of the Gender & Diversities Institute at EDC and Pam Buffington, Senior Technology Associate at EDC?s [Center for Online Professional Education.]
Related Link: [Center for Online Professional Education.]

Digital Library in a Box from Virginia Tech
November 2002-- Visit the improved web site for the digital library in a box project at Dlbox was created to simplify and enable the creation of digital libraries. The dlbox project is developing generic reusable components that can be assembled to create custom digital libraries with little or no programming. Contact dlbox developers at [edu]
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NSDL K-12 Educators' Portal Summit Held at UCAR 10/10-11
November 2002-- Hosts Marcia Mardis, Kaye Howe, Susan Jesuroga, and Ellen Hoffman welcomed representatives from NSDL Projects with a K-12 focus and other key individuals to the Educators Portal meeting at UCAR on October 10-11. The goal of this meeting was to map out guiding elements for a portal that would enable K-12 educators to make best use of NSDL content and services. In addition to strengthening their common connections, participants engaged in lively and informative discussions that focused on making best use of the features of existing projects, addressing unique structural and cultural issues in the K-12 environments, and considerations for resource location, presentation, and utilization. A culminating activity encouraged participants to project to the future of the NSDL and the ways in which the NSDL can transform K-12 education. Notes and action items from the meeting will soon be available through the NSDL Communications Portal. Contact Marcia Mardis [], Community and Services Standing Committee host, or Kim Roempler [], K-12 Subcommittee host, for more details about the meeting. Many thanks to UCAR's Donna Cummings for making all of the meeting arrangements with her usual aplomb!
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NSDL Publisher's Workshop Report
November 2002-- The workshop was held October 8 on the Columbia campus with over 50 representatives from NSDL and various educational publishers. Presentations and notes from the breakout groups are available on the workshop website at, as well as pictures.
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Evaluation Working Group Report
November 2002-- A brief status report prepared by Tamara Sumner (chair, EWG) on Working Group evaluation activities over the past year was included materials given to the NSDL National Visiting Committee which met last month. Download a copy of the report at:
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Subscribe to the new Gender & Science Digital Library Newsletter!
November 2002-- The Gender and Science Digital Library (GSDL) project recently launched its newsletter. This newsletter will provide quarterly updates of GSDL?s current and upcoming activities. To subscribe to receive this newsletter, please send an email to [] with the message ?subscribe gsdl? in the body of your email message. Please be sure to leave the subject line blank. To see a copy of the newsletter online, please visit:
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A Privacy Policy (PC-4) for the NSDL
November 2002-- The draft of "PC-4: Privacy" is posted at for public discussion. This is a crucial topic: privacy must be respected for those using NSDL, but at the same time we must collect information to improve and personalize services. Your ideas on this issue are important. Please send your comments to [] by November 25. Comments and issues will be reviewed by the Policy Committee. An approved policy will be posted no later than the Policy Committee meeting on December 5 to be held right after the NSDL Annual Meeting meeting Dec. 2-4. Comments on policies are available at the list's email archive: Throughout the PC-4 discussion period PC member Stuart Sutton will summarize comments as frequently as discussion justifies so that PC members can develop responses. All comments sent in will be immediately acknowledged as received. The next New Project Welcome Call will be held on November 4 at 11:00-12:00AM EST. Broadcast calls are aimed at orienting new NSDL project staff, but are also open to existing projects who are interested. More information is available at
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NSDL Annual Meeting: Updates and Announcements, Dec. 2-4, 2002
November 2002-- Time is running short for reserving your hotel room at the NSDL Annual Meeting in Washington D.C. The Annual NSDL meeting will be held December 2-4, with the Policy Committee meeting on December 5. To guarantee your room, you must make your reservations with the hotel by November 4. Hotel information can be found at We also ask that you complete your online meeting reservation by November 14, so we can start finalizing numbers. Register at Remember to sign up for the poster session, too, so we know your requirements and receive your abstract in time. Sign ups for the breakout sessions will be at the meeting. Breakout sessions include 1. Collection building: metadata, OAI, and other issues 2. Service integration and creation, including portal development 3. Authentication, authorization and IP rights 4. Longevity and preservation 5. Evaluation 6. Building content and quality control 7. Effective/emerging uses of NSDL in learning and teaching 8. Integrating NSDL into formal and informal learning environments.
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Calling All Posters!
November 2002-- The NSDL Annual Meeting Planning Committee is seeking poster presenters from both NSDL new, continuing and past grantees, and their partner institutions. The primary purpose of the poster session is to provide additional opportunity for communication and discussions with colleagues about digital library development, research, products, services, and marketing. All meeting attendees will have an opportunity to view the posters at the Monday night reception. Sign up to present your poster at
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Lynch: Four Challenges for Academic Libraries
November 2002-- Speaking at the LITA closing session, Clifford Lynch, executive director of the Coalition for Networked Information, cited four factors contributing to the destabilization of library technology. The first was the growth of portals on college and university campuses. "Everyone wants to be the portal for everything," Lynch explained, noting that he viewed the advent of portals as bridging the world of Google and proprietary content to build "access points that reach across deep and surface web content." The emergence of course management software (CMS), is another factor. While Lynch said that while there was a lot of action in this area, there's no consensus as to where on campus CMS should fit: libraries, IT, and instructional technology departments are all viable contenders. The problem? While Lynch acknowledged that many faculty members want to bring content, including licensed content, out of the library and into the CMS, some CMS companies are talking to content suppliers, whose content the library may already have licensed. "Is this in the best interest of anybody?" Lynch asked." Lynch said that the "open courseware movement,"such as the one initiated by MIT, also provided a new challenge for academic libraries. Lynch described the open courseware movement as a "new form of scholarly communication," and a new means of publishing scholarly grey literature, and predicted that student content in open courseware would create a new set of issues for libraries. "While the 90s were the decade of faculty intellectual property rights, this decade we will visit student intellectual property rights and the issue of implied consent," he said. Open courseware is something that needs to be "kept on the library radar screen," he added. Finally, Lynch cited the emergence of "institutional repositories," such as new MacArthur? fellow Paul Ginsparg's ArXiv? at Cornell University as another issue placing pressure on libraries. He described the recent emergence of various digitization projects and major scholarly undertakings that live "on the computer underneath faculty desks" and argued that such content needs "to move to where it can be secure and be preserved."-- Library Journal Academic Newswire, Oct. 17, 2002.

Supreme Copyright Challenge May Falter, But Bigger Battle Has Begun
November 2002-- Challengers to the Sonny Bono Copyright Term Extension Act (CTEA) are less than optimistic that the Supreme Court will overturn the law after last week's oral arguments. The nine justices seemed to understand, and even sympathize with, the problems another copyright extension could mean for the public. However, they also seemed to signal that there was little they could do to undo the legislation. According to the NEW YORK TIMES, Charles, Nesson, the co-director of the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard Law School, told those gathered at a post-court luncheon that he sensed that "the case could be in trouble." Nesson said he was encouraged that the justices seemed to grasp the problem with the legislation, but that "they didn't necessarily buy our solution." Despite a sense that the court may not be in a position to overturn the law, speakers were upbeat, and told those at the luncheon that the battle had just begun. Stanford University's Lawrence Lessig, who argued the case, lauded the Court's hearing the case as the beginning of a public debate about the health of the public domain.-- Library Journal Academic Newswire, Oct. 15, 2002.

TEACH Act is Poised to Become Law in Support of Distance Education
November 2002-- The TEACH Act (Technology Education and Copyright Harmonization), a bill that would amend the Copyright Act to provide to better facilitate distance education, has now passed both houses of Congress as an amendment to the Justice Department reauthorization bill (H.R. 5512). It awaits President Bush's signature to become law. With broad bipartisan support, the American Library Association (ALA) Washington office says the bill should be signed into law soon. The TEACH Act will essentially permit the use of digital material essential to online study in much the same way materials are used in a physical classroom setting. Specifically, the law will permit content to be stored on a server for asynchronous use by students, and would permit the fair-use of portions of audiovisual and dramatic works as well as sound recordings in digital format. The law also protects digital copyrighted information used in distance education by limiting the distributed material to enrolled students and requiring the use of technological measures to prevent downstream distribution. Once signed, the TEACH Act will go into effect immediately.-- Library Journal Academic Newswire, Oct. 10, 2002.



Beyond the Second Dimension
November 2002-- The current issue of RLG DigiNews? features an article about 3D imaging in digital libraries. "Developing a 3D Digital Library for Spatial Data: Issues Identified and Description of Prototype" is by Jeremy Rowe who is head of Media Development with the Partnership for Research in Spatial Modeling at Arizona State University.
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For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology (FIRST)
November 2002-- FIRST is a non-profit organization dedicated to motivating the next generation of scientists and engineers.
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Long Term Ecological Research (LTER) Network Newsletter
November 2002-->; LTER held an educational symposium at the NSF last summer to explore ways to increase the utilization of field stations, how to fire up scientists to get involved in education projects, how to share data from different sites to use in K-12 schools, and what technology to use, and what the potential might be for involving faculty from community colleges.
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Understanding the Privacy Space
November 2002-- This paper reports on an ongoing research project focusing on privacy tools, and services available on the Internet by Benjamin D. Brunk.
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November 2002 Inspiration
November 2002-- Download Vinton Cerf's remarks, "father of the Internet," and recipient of the 2002 Paul Evan Peters Award, from a wide-ranging talk on the technology, economics, public policy, and philosophy of the Internet delivered at the Spring 2002 Coalition for Networked Information (CNI) Task Force meeting. "You have teenagers thinking they're going to make millions as NBA stars when that's not realistic for even 1 percent of them. Becoming a scientist or engineer is." ?Dean Kamen, founder of Deka Research and developer of the [Segway Human Transporter.] "From the Desk of David Pogue: The Foreign Language of Computers"--New York Times, Oct. 10, 2002 This fall the New York Public Library will launch a searchable database of visual materials documenting culture studies and social history internationally from the ancient world to the present.
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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