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Archive for the ‘Geology’ Category

EndNote Clinics in the Science & Engineering Information Center

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ENDNOTE CLINICS in the Science & Engineering Information Center, 2nd Floor, Silverman Library

Bring your laptop to one of our regularly scheduled Wednesday EndNote clinics between 1 and 2pm and our EndNote experts will help you load and use this free software program, which helps you save, manage and format your references for use in writing papers.  We will also be available at these clinics to help advanced EndNote users troubleshoot any problems you may have using the software. Questions about library resources and services also are encouraged.  All are welcome!

WHERE:  Science & Engineering Information Center, 2nd Floor, Silverman Library, Capen Hall [back by the windows]

WHEN:  Wednesday, from 1-2pm, on the following dates: February 26, March 5, March 12, March 26, April 2, April 9, April 16, April 23, April 30, and May 7   [Note:  There will be no clinic during the week of spring break, March 17th-21st]

Questions:  Contact Nancy Schiller, Engineering Librarian, schiller@buffalo.edu

New Web of Science/Knowledge Interface & Branding

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The next time you log into the Web of Science/Knowledge you will be greeted with a new interface and rebranded platform and database suites.

As to the rebranding, Web of Knowledge brand name has been discontinued. “Web of Knowledge” is rebranded as “Web of Science” (both the platform and the full suite of databases available thereon) and the old “Web of Science” citation database suite is now the “Web of Science Core Collection”.

As to the interface, the look and feel is rather different.  However, the underlying fields and databases remain the same. No content/functionality has been lost, though some of it is hidden from the default view.  There is a helpful “what’s new” page http://images.webofknowledge.com/WOKRS513R8.1/help/WOK/hp_whatsnew_wok.html and for those truly interested, you may wish to watch some of the new short videos at http://wokinfo.com/training_support/training/web-of-science/.

A few of the changes of note:

  • Only one search field will display unless you click “+Add Another Field.”
  • The list of databases/indexes within Web of Science will no longer appear at the bottom of the search screen by default. Instead, towards the top there is an orange chevron beside the “All Databases” header that produces a dropdown menu that will enable you to select a particular database including the Web of Science Core Collection (the classic citation      database cluster).
  • The sort function has been moved to the center of the results page.
  • Times cited is featured more prominently on the right hand side of each article.
  • Keywords  are clickable enabling you to execute a new search.
  • Navigation is simpler. Just use your browser’s forward and backward arrows.
  • Google Scholar will contain links to Web of Science on campus or if you are connected to UB’s IP address off site.

Any questions, don’t hesitate to contact any member of the Science & Engineering Information Center staff or your department’s library liaison.

Discover Magazine’s Top 10 Science Stories of 2013

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by Fred Stoss, Biology, Geology, Ecology, and Mathematics Librarian

The January/February issue of Discover Magazine includes a list of of the top 100 stories in science that they covered in 2013.  The top 10 are summarized below.

  1. New Signs of Long-Gone Life on Mars (if there ever was any, despite conditions that it might have or could have…).
  2. The Supreme World of Genes (the Supreme Court judges BRCA1 And BRACA2 and other naturally occurring genes cannot be patented).
  3. CO2 Hits 400 ppm—Does It Matter? (atmospheric concentrations of CO2 never quite reached 300 ppm in ice-core records 400,000 years old, but steady increases since the last two centuries find levels continuing to rise, as do the debates on the significance of all the CO2.
  4. The Never Ending End of Privacy (the NSA surveillance programs indicate that Santa actually MAY know who is naughty and nice).
  5. Stem Cell Future (liver buds, brain organiods, human stem cells from eggs… grow your own takes on new meanings).
  6. Voyager 1 Goes Interstellar (35+ years, 15+ billion miles and Voyager 1 is now in interstellar space, and a group of unsuspecting space explorers will be waiting in a few centuries to unravel the secrets of a strange space craft, V’Ger, the lost Voyager-6 space probe).
  7. Ready from Prime Time (quests for and about prime numbers add up to a lot of conjectures).
  8. Extracting Family Trees from Ancient Genomes (new DNA extraction techniques and genomic analyses push analyses of DNA samples to 700,000 years [horse] and 400,000 years [hominid], and new tools for evolution also evolve).
  9. Childhood Obesity Reversed (childhood obesity rates, after decades-long increases, showed the first decline among low-income children).
  10. Shaping the Future of Physics (someone found a new geometric shape, the amplituhedron, and may give a new way to look at our expanding universe).

When we look at the disciplinary coverage of all 100 Top Stories, the biomedical and life sciences dominate with 40 stories, followed distantly by environmental/geoscience stories (26), chemistry and physics (15), socio-political aspects of science (10), engineering (5), and mathematics and computational science (4).

Discover Magazine (January/February 2014) is available online full text by several means here at UB, from 01/01/2001 to present in Academic Search Complete, Canadian Reference Centre, MasterFILE Premier and Vocational & Career Collection, in Freely Accessible Journals.

Impressions: Charleston Conference 2013

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by A. Ben Wagner, Sciences Librarian

The Charleston Conference focuses on electronic resources and collection issues such as open access, MOOC’s, altmetrics, citation metrics and management,  and copyright. Many of the presentations are freely available by going to the online program, hovering one’s mouse over the session title until the abstract pop-up window appears and then clicking on the “Slides” button, or in cases of multiple files, embedded links within the abstract text. There are some extraordinary presentations, and most of the slides clearly convey much of the content. http://2013charlestonconference.sched.org/

My impressions:

A)     Open Access is developing an air of inevitability what with the Federal funding agencies having submitted open article and open data proposals now under internal (confidential) review per the February 2013 White House directive and the major announcement by the American Chemical Society of 4 new/enhanced open access programs including a brand new open access (OA) journal, ACS Central Science.

B)      I was disappointed that there is no timetable for finishing the review of federal funding agencies OA proposals to provide open access.  Nor is there any guarantee or indication of what, if any, public review will eventually take place.

C)      There is a lively, continuing debate over if libraries should maintain a fund to pay article processing charges (APC’s) for open access publication. And if they do, what conditions should be place on it such as a cap on the fee, embargo period, and publications funded per author per year. One interesting criteria was a requirement that the item be deposited in the institutional repository. Much of the debate focuses on sustainability, given library budgets, and good will/tangible support for OA vs. administrative headaches. Fundamental issues include:

  1. Library forced into supporting two systems (subscriptions & APC’s).
  2. Will this just be the same publishers making more money?
  3. Are we biasing authors towards the minority of OA journals that charge APC’s vs. the majority that do not?
  4. Researchers are not taking ownership of the costs of dissemination so have we really changed the system. How can we encourage decisions based on price and bring competitive forces into play?

D)     Lots of talk about article level metrics (so-called altmetrics). More and more publishers and database vendors are setting up licenses with altmetrics firms such as ImpactStory, Plum Analytics, and Altmetric.com. Public Library of Science, Highwire Press, and the American Institute of Physics are just three of a rapidly increasing number of publishers now showing article-level metrics of some type, even if it is only downloads and reads.

E)      No surprise that MOOC’s (massive open online courses) were discussed.  Some observations that were made:

  1. The only reason our reference services work is that so few of our patrons take advantage of them. Scale is an old problem, but MOOC’s could instantly overwhelm our services.
  2. Obvious problems with copyright/use of materials. Although permissions are sometimes possible, MOOC content understandably gravitates towards public domain/Creative Commons licensing material.  This is especially true when students may come from scores of countries with varying copyright and fair use laws, or having no fair use recognized at all.
  3. MOOC’s will destroy traditional textbooks before they destroy higher education (the “college experience” is a value-added dimension not easily replicated).
  4. Educators and librarians who are supporters of open access publishing whereby publishers are threatened, suddenly have a different attitude when it comes to MOOC’s which threaten higher ed and libraries.  What’s good for the goose is good for the gander?
  5. WARNING: Most MOOC platforms treat you (the library/scholar) as publisher requiring you to warrant compliance with all intellectual property/copyright law.
  6. A tricky and uncertain legal situation where institution is non-profit and course/platform is for profit.  Be careful.

F)      Fair use strengthened and reaffirmed by recent court cases. There have been some “nuisance” or really picky cases, e.g. use of 9 words in a film, correctly attributed to Faulkner where overzealous copyright holders have been roundly defeated. Often victorious on the grounds of transformative use; this is becoming a key legal argument.

G)     A real concern among librarians and publishers that a somewhat recent change in Google Scholar ranking algorithms penalized journal articles behind pay walls. A few studies have indicated that this has a variable, but at times significant effect. JSTOR in particular suffered a significant drop in traffic from Google Scholar.

H)     Libraries are seeing a real mix of citation management tools in use on their campus and are trying to figure out how many and how to support all the tools patrons are interested in.  Some universities have developed detailed, yet summary, comparison charts such as Univ. of Wisconsin-Madison, University of Washington, and Penn State. We should either link to these or develop our own.  One presentation indicated:

  1. Individual work – RefWorks, EndNote, Papers
  2. Collaborative Work – Zotero & Mendeley
  3. Multi-language – RefWorks, Zotero
  4. Compatibility with BibTex – Mendeley
  5. Multiple OS – Mendeley

I)        Study of ILL requests after large journal cancellation projects at 3 North Carolina universities showed minimal impact on ILL operations with only 1%-4% of the requests in the subsequent year being from the cancelled journals.

J)       Fifteen new resources/innovations were highlighted in 5-minute presentations in a plenary product showcase:

  1. ACSESS DL – a digital library back to 1908 created by an alliance of three crop, soil, and environmental societies.
  2. ISNI – International Standard Name Identifier – real progress on a standard universal number for authors/scholars. ORCID will be a subset of the ISNI database.  This is operational (6.4 million individuals & 400,000 organizations), and they are doing retrospective assignments.
  3. Docuseek2 – streams social issue and documentary film videos.
  4. Elsevier Reference Modules – bundles reference works, book chapters, and articles by discipline using the ScienceDirect platform.
  5. Dictionary of American Regional English Digital (Harvard Univ. Press) – e-version greatly enriched with sound recordings, map interface, etc.
  6. AccessScience – McGraw Hill (not sure why this long-time product made the list)
  7. Proquest Research Companion – similar to our Research Tips web site, i.e. how to write a paper.
  8. ArtStor Shared Shelf – organizations can now catalog, upload, manage, and share loca media collections. Neat!
  9. SIPX – outsourced end-to-end solution for copyright and IP management for learning management systems and MOOCs.
  10. SPIE Open Access Program – 1/3 of authors now choose open access option at $100 per page.
  11. New Taylor & Francis Library/Info Science Journal Open Access Policy – full green OA, deposit in IR and use in LMS permitted, 50 tokens for free access that can be given out to anyone.
  12. ASM Science (American Soc. of Micobiology) – new digital library platform, books free of digital rights management restrictions.
  13. Thieme e-clinical platforms (Thieme eNeurosurgery, Thieme eOtolaryngology, Thieme eSpine) – comprehensive, multimedia platforms pulling together textbooks, books, videos, procedures, journal articles, and PubMed information.
  14. Browzine (Third Iron) – organizes both open access and subscription articles into a unified, composite journal which is placed on a common, library-branded newsstand and easily accessible from a tablet.
  15. Next Gen Web of Science (Thomson Reuters) – new “clean” interface, Google Scholar partnership whereby WOS citations show in Google Scholar results for WOS customers & full-text link to Google Scholar from WOS, more regional content.

K)      Readcube is making some waves in the rental/pay-per-article field.  3 levels of access: rental, cloud purchase, and PDF purchase. Currently 110 journals, but includes Nature Publishing Group, and they say they are growing.

October Workshops in the Science & Engineering Information Center

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This October, the UB Libraries’ new Science & Engineering Information Center on the 2nd floor of Silverman Library is offering two hands-on workshops for UB science and engineering students, faculty, and staff.

Workshop #1:  Electronic Books in Science & Engineering

When:  October 23, 2013, from 11:00 am to 12:30 pm

Where:  Science & Engineering Information Center, 2nd floor, Silverman Library, Capen Hall (back by the windows)

What:   There are thousands of electronic books in science and engineering that the UB Libraries have purchased for your use in your coursework and research.  These are not necessarily textbooks, though many of them do offer an introduction to topics as diverse as applied mathematics, finite element method, calculus, Java scripting, and more, while others provide in-depth coverage of specialized topics in chemistry, biology, computer science, all areas of engineering, geology, physics, mathematics, and statistics.  Come and learn how to find, search, print from, download, take notes in, cite, and build personalized virtual bookshelves of electronic books in science and engineering.

What You Need to Do:  Just show up!

Highly Recommended:   Bring your laptop/tablet.  We will start with a short formal presentation and then work with you individually.

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Workshop #2:   Get Cited or Perish:  Citation Metrics for Tenure, Promotions & Grants

When:  October 29, 2013, from 3:30 pm to 5:00 pm

Where:  Science & Engineering Information Center, 2nd floor, Silverman Library, Capen Hall (back by the windows)

What:  Increasingly, citations to one’s publications are being used as part of the evaluation of dossiers, departments, and grants. Hence, it is important to not only figure out where to publish, but also how to get cited and accurately count those citations. This workshop will give you insight into tools such as Web of Knowledge and Google Scholar Citations so that you can better understand the contribution your research has made to the scientific literature. You will learn how to find specific metrics like the h-index and journal impact factors.

What You Need to Do:   Just show up!

Highly Recommended:   Bring your laptop/tablet.  We will start with a presentation that includes live demos, which you can follow on your device. Then our staff will work with you individually or in small groups.

Questions?  Contact Nancy Schiller, Engineering Librarian, Science & Engineering Information Center, 2nd Floor, Capen Hall, schiller@buffalo.edu, 716-645-1338

 

UB Science & Engineering Students! Take the Knovel University Challenge and be eligible to win prizes!

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Every year, the Knovel University Challenge allows students to compete for prizes while learning how to use Knovel, a research tool and e-book database that the UB Libraries subscribes to; Knovel can help you complete assignments as well as research topics and find properties data, equations, and more.  This year, Knovel asked engineering professors to help them develop questions that would test your knowledge while providing real-life examples of problem sets they assign students.

The Dates: The contest starts September 9, 2013, and ends December 1, 2013.  REMEMBER TO PLAY WEEKLY!

The Prizes: There are both weekly and end-of-contest prizes! Answer correctly and you could win Roku Media Players, Pebble Smartwatches, Samsung Chromebooks, and more…

START PLAYING NOW!   Connect from on-campus via http://www.knoveluniversitychallenge.com

Let the Games Begin!

knovel 2013 challenge logo

 

Bring Your EndNote Questions to Us!

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Dates and Times:  Monday, September 16, from 3:00-4:30 pm AND Thursday, September 19, from 12:00-1:30pm

Location:  Science & Engineering Information Center, 2nd Floor, Silverman Library, Capen Hall

Come get a brief overview of EndNote, software freely provided by the library for UB students and faculty that helps you save, manage and format your references for use in writing papers.  The overview will be followed by an opportunity for you to talk one-on-one with an EndNote expert on our staff who can answer questions and help you solve problems you may be having with EndNote.

We recommend that you bring your laptop with you and that you load the EndNote software for it in advance from: http://library.buffalo.edu/help/endnote/ 

All are welcome!

UB Welcomes ‘Farm Hands’ Author Tom Rivers!

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farmhands

The University at Buffalo Libraries, Undergraduate Academies, and Office of Sustainability are pleased to announce a book talk with local author Tom Rivers. Tom, a Batavia (NY) newspaper reporter, will join us in University Libraries Special Collections, 420 Capen Hall, from 5-6pm on Wednesday, September 18, 2013 to discuss his book, Farm Hands. Farm Hands is a chronicle of Tom’s experiences and observations working migrant worker farm jobs. The book was selected for UB’s 48 Good Books project.

In addition to the talk, copies of the book will be available for purchase at the UB Sustainable Living Fair being held on the same day from 10am-2pm in the Student Union. Tom will be signing copies of the book at the fair from 10am-12noon and 1pm-2pm.
Both events are free and open to the public. We hope to see you there!

Journal Impact Factors – New Edition Covering 2012 Data

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Thomson Reuters Research Analytics has just released a new edition of its Journal Citation Reports (JCR) providing impact factors and other citation and influence metrics for more than 10,000 journals from 83 countries. The University Libraries provides a site-wide license to this database.  The citation data comes from the Web of Science,  one of the largest and oldest citation databases.  JCR is issued in two editions: Science (& Technology) and Social Sciences.

According to the Thomson Reuters press release,  a total of 379 journals received their first Journal Impact Factor. Additionally, 37 journals were suppressed due to questionable citation activity. Note that Thomson is now referring to the new edition as 2013 (based on the year that it was released), but all the data is from 2012. In the Journal Citation Reports interface, it is still referred to by the year the data was collected; i.e., the 2012 edition.

Alternately, there are now a number of free web sites that evaluate the impact of journals including Eigenfactor, SCImago, and Google Scholar Metrics for Journals. Consulting these sites is useful in order to cross-check to JCR rankings and in cases where a journal is not covered by JCR.

NAS Celebrates 150 Years of Service to U.S. Science

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President Abraham Lincoln signed the legislation creating the U.S. National Academy of Science (NAS) on March 3, 1863, shortly after establishment of the Land Grant Colleges, under the 1862 Morrill Act. These two events provided the U.S. a strong foothold from which American scientific achievements were born. Since then, the National Academy not only promoted excellence in science through its publications (report series and the acclaimed journal, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences-PNAS) and its elected body of scholars into The Academy; the National Academy elevated the quality of scientific, engineering and medical achievements to the most prestigious places worldwide.

From its humble beginnings, additional entities were spawned and created an even more robust atmosphere celebrating and driving America’s scientific achievements. President Woodrow Wilson signed an executive order in 1918 that paired science and public policy through the National Research Council, which works in concert with the National Academy of Science, the National Academy of Engineering (created in 1964)and the Institute of Medicine (in 1970).

Among the celebratory remarks about the Sesquicentennial Anniversary of the Academy, Robert Cicerone, NAS President, elaborated on the goals and mission of the Academy in an editorial in the March 19th issue of PNAS. They include a concise inventory of the Academy’s current mission (read his full editorial):

  • Validate scientific excellence,
  • Enhance the vitality of the scientific enterprise,
  • Guide public policy with sciences, and
  • Communicate the nature, values and judgments of science to government and the public.

The Reports of the National Academies and the National Research Council are published by the National Academies Press (NAP).  NAP publishes roughly 200 reports per year, all of which are entered into the UB Libraries collection of E-book Resources with many of their titles also acquired in their print formats. They are often used as supplemental readings for classes in the sciences, engineering, mathematics, and medicine. It is interesting to note that among publishers, NAP is the first self-sustaining publisher making its reports available on the Web for free, in an open access model.