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

The Whiteboard Report
January 2004, Issue #45



2004 NSF NSDL Program Solicitation Announced
January 2004 -- In FY2004 NSDL will again support projects in the Services and Targeted Research tracks, but will replace the Collections track with a Pathways track. Within the Services track, two particular types of projects will be strongly encouraged: (1) selection services and (2) usage development workshops.

* Pathways projects will assume a stewardship role for the educational content and/or the services needed by a broad community of learners.
* Selection services projects will focus on increasing the amount of high-quality STEM educational content known to NSDL.
* Usage development workshops will promote the use of NSDL and its resources by various communities of learners.

These three elements reflect an appropriate expansion in emphasis for NSDL from its initial (and necessary) collecting of educational resources, materials, and other digital learning objects, towards enabling learners to "connect" or otherwise find pathways to resources that are appropriate to their needs. Simultaneously, these projects will develop both the capacities of individual users and the capacity of the larger community of learners. In addition, the workshops will permit the study of user information-seeking behavior and user interaction with specific NSDL content. The full solicitation is available at
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DLESE on Mars
January 2004 -- The Digital Library for Earth System Education (DLESE) is playing a role in the education and outreach efforts related to the recent landings of the "Spirit" and "Opportunity" rovers on Mars. Links to DLESE and its learning materials about Mars are featured on the MarsQuest Online site ( MarsQuest Online has been developed by TERC as the main education and outreach site for the Mars rover landings.

The site features activities of interest to young people, teachers, and the general public, including games designed for independent inquiry of water, life, volcanoes and canyons on Mars, and an interface for interactively exploring images returned from Mars on a daily basis. NASA has links to MarsQuest Online on its web sites, which is already generating a spike in usage for DLESE. Up-to-date information on the mission and the rovers' progress is available from NASA's Mars Exploration Program as well as MarsQuest Online.
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NSF Human and Social Dynamics (HSD) Priority Area 2004 RFP
January 2004 -- The HSD priority area promotes a comprehensive multi-disciplinary approach to understanding human and social dynamics that will significantly advance the scientific understanding of human action and development at the micro level, and of human adaptation and change at the organizational and societal levels. More information at
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NSDL Annual Meeting 2003 Posters Online
January 2004 -- Did you need more time to look at project posters during the annual meeting? Do you want more information on any NSDL projects? Poster information from the 2003 Annual Meeting can be found at You can also see the actual Posters and Handouts on this page. If you haven't sent your project poster in, please send it to Casey Jones (
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NSDL On the Road
January 2004 -- At the Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) Federation's 12th Annual Meeting held in Orlando early in January NSDL was introduced to participants in a panel discussion and workshop focused around how ESIP members could further collaborate with NSDL.

The American Library Association (ALA) Mid-Winter Meeting January 9-12 in San Diego was attended by 10,000-12,000 librarians. The NSDL exhibit booth had steady traffic with many librarians expressing interest in the 2004 NSF NSDL Program solicitation. Those who knew about NSDL were very pleased to find out more, get in-depth information, and were overall enthusiastic. An "Invitation to Librarians," along with an NSDL MARC collection record "bookmark" encouraging librarians to catalog the NSDL, the NSDL 2000-2003 Progress Report, and great pens comprised a winning combination of informative materials distributed at the meeting. For a full report contact John Saylor (, or Carol Terrizzi ( / 607 255-2702).

NSDL will also be featured at the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Meeting in Seattle Feb. 12-16 where the NSDL exhibit booth will invite AAAS members to get acquainted with NSDL projects and resources. Participation from those of you in the NSDL community who will be in attendance is encouraged. Please let Susan Van Gundy know ( / 303-497-2946) if you are interested in helping at the exhibit hall, or stop by booth #216.

On Mar. 4-6 NSDL has been invited to give a presentation at the Third NSF Research Centers Educators Network Workshop in Gainesville, FL. Contact Carol Terrizzi ( / 607 255-2702) for more information.
The National Science Teachers Association annual convention for 2004 will be April 1-4 in Atlanta. NSDL plans for this important event include a half-day short course, several one-hour sessions, a reception, and a booth in the exhibit hall. Many NSDL projects and partners are already coordinating with these plans to create maximum impact on the K-16 science teaching community. Please contact Susan Van Gundy ( / 303-497-2946) for additional details.

NSDL at other upcoming events:
March 2-3 -- Consortium for School Networking - Washington, D.C.
April 21-24 - National Council of Teachers of Mathematics - Philadelphia, PA.
May 6-10 - American Association of Museums - New Orleans, LA.

SEND US YOUR PROJECT'S BROCHURES, fliers, giveaways, and other promotional materials to be distributed at NSDL booths and presentations at AAAS and other upcoming events. These materials have been extremely useful and well received at recent conferences including the Association of Science and Technology Centers Conference and the American Libraries Association Mid-Winter Meeting. Materials for AAAS should arrive by February 6th. Send to: Susan Van Gundy, NSDL/UCAR, 3300 Mitchell Lane, Room 2128, Boulder, CO 80301.
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Upcoming Conference Paper and Registration Deadlines
January 2004 -- International Conference on Education and Information Systems: Technologies and Applications (EISTA) 2004
July 21 - 25, 2004 Orlando, FL
Submission of extended abstracts (500-1500) words or paper drafts (2000-5000) words: February 11th, 2004
Invited session proposals: February 11th, 2004
Notifications of Acceptance: March 24th, 2004

Joint Conference on Digital Libraries (JCDL) 2004 Global Reach and Diverse Impact
June 7-11, 2004, Tucson, Arizona
Short papers, posters, proposals for workshops: February 10, 2004
Demonstrations: March 31, 2004

European Conference on Digital Libraries (ECDL) 2004
September 12-17 2004, University of Bath, UK
Full papers, panels, tutorials, and workshop proposals: April 5, 2004
Posters and demonstrations: May 19, 2004
Final submission date: June 11, 2004

Sixth National Russian Research Conference on Digital Libraries (RCDL) 2004
September 29-October 1, 2004, Pushchino, Russia
Extended abstracts submissions: March 25, 2004
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Usability Guidelines
January 2004 -- The National Cancer Institute has published guidelines for web design and usability. Each guideline is rated by relative importance and by the strength of evidence supporting each citing the research each guideline based on.
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January 2004 -- Visionary Technology in Library Solutions (VTLS) describes its new product "VITAL" as "... a cutting-edge solution for digital libraries that builds a Digital Asset Management System around the open source software of Fedora." Fedora was invented at Cornell University and continues under active research development in a Mellon-funded collaboration with the University of Virginia. The web page for this project is at
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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