Big Research Data: NIH and DataOne

From the announcement: “Wide-ranging National Institutes of Health grants announced today will develop new strategies to analyze and leverage the explosion of increasingly complex biomedical data sets, often referred to as Big Data. These NIH multi-institute awards constitute an initial investment of nearly $32 million in fiscal year 2014 by NIH’s Big Data to Knowledge (BD2K) initiative, which is projected to have a total investment of nearly $656 million through 2020, pending available funds.” Read More. (FY14 Awards)


DataONE: the Data Observation Network for Earth is a distributed cyberinfrastructure that meets the needs of science and society for open, persistent, robust, and accessible Earth observational data. DataONE has dramatically increased the discoverability and accessibility of diverse yet interrelated Earth and environmental science data. In doing so, it has enhanced the efficiency of research and enabled scientists, policy makers and others to more easily address complex questions about our environment and our role within it.” Read More.

Altmetrics and Scholarly Impact

“Peer review still plays a critical role in evaluating science, but citation-based bibliometric indicators are becoming increasingly important. This chapter looks at a novel set of indicators that can complement both citation analysis and peer review. Altmetrics use indicators gathered in the real-time Social Web to provide immediate feedback about scholarly works.”

see also
Altmetrics Collection on PLOS

and ImpactStory

Improved 3-D Printing

MIT-based researchers Marcelo Coelho and Skylar Tibbits have teamed up to improve the limitations that the 3-D printer’s size has on what can be printed.
Hyperform: &

Gartner’s Annual Hype Cycle

“Assessment of the maturity, business benefit and future direction of more than 2,000 technologies, grouped into 98 areas”

The Dartmouth College community has access to Gartner:

Thoughts about UX Design

While at the American Library Association’s conference in January, I went to one session called, Putting U in UX Design, presented by Heidi Steiner.

An overall theme was customer service – how can our Web interfaces support good customer service. Why not learn from the extensive business literature!

A point was made that libraries and librarians should use terms that our patrons will understand. Yes indeed, we should! Heidi pointed to John Kupersmith’s interesting analysis: Library Terms that Users Understand.

Simplify, simplify, simplify … can we make our library Web materials easy to read and navigate? Where can we trim and save the time of our patrons? The one pager model could be used much more.

Can we write more like we talk!

Let’s be strategic about where we place our online help, and let’s be careful not to overdue things like chat widgets.

Be attentive to things that are broken or do not work well.

Can self service always be an option?

Libraries can and should provide a consistent positive experience on the Web.

Assessment is important for incremental improvements – tools like Crazy Egg, Optimizely, first click analysis, and Google AdWords were mentioned. And, getting feedback from patrons through focus groups, surveys, post-it notes on bulletin boards – whatever works.

A few people who have a voice in Library UX  besides Heidi include: Aaron Schmidt, Amanda Etches, Brian Mathews, Matthew Reidsma and Steve Bell … I am sure there are more but these folks were called out during the session.

SpringerMaterials – New Features

What is SpringerMaterials (tutorial): Based on the Landolt-Börnstein New Series; a Resource for Physical & Chemical Data in Materials Science: 250,000 Substances & Material Systems | 3,000 Properties | 1,200,000 Literature Citations

What’s new

“Substance Profiles for a large number of chemical compounds. These Substance Profiles show basic properties, 3D-structures, names, synonyms and identifiers such as the CAS-number or the InChI-Key of a selected compound.”

“A new Structure Search tool that makes it easy to search for aliphatic, aromatic and organometallic compounds”

“Starting with binary phase diagrams from the Linus Pauling files, SpringerMaterials now offers the possibility to determine precise data coordinates without having to rely on error-prone extrapolation techniques. We will soon add this feature to ternary phase diagrams as well”

New Landolt-Börnstein volumes uploaded:

  • II/29D2: Structure and Molecular Constants – Molecular Constants Mostly from Microwave, Molecular Beam, and Sub-Doppler Laser Spectroscopy – Asymmetric Top Molecules, Part 2
  • II/29D3: Structure and Molecular Constants – Molecular Constants Mostly from Microwave, Molecular Beam, and Sub-Doppler Laser Spectroscopy – Asymmetric Top Molecules, Part 3
  • III/43A10: Crystallography, Structure and Morphology – Crystal Structures of Inorganic Compounds – Structure Types – Space Groups (140) I4/mcm – (136) P42/mnm
  • IV/26B: Heat of Mixing, Vapor-Liquid Equilibrium, and Volumetric Properties of Mixtures and Solutions – Binary Liquid Systems of Nonelectrolytes II
  • IV/26C: Heat of Mixing, Vapor-Liquid Equilibrium, and Volumetric Properties of Mixtures and Solutions – Binary Liquid Systems of Nonelectrolytes III
  • VIII/2C2: Advanced Materials – Metal Forming Data – Non-Ferrous Alloys
  • I/25A: Excited Nuclear States: Nuclei with Z=1-29, edited by. H. Schopper
  • I/25B: Excited Nuclear States: Nuclei with Z=30-47 , edited by H. Schopper
  • VIII/1B3: Laser Physics and Applications – Laser Systems Part 3, edited by H. Weber, P. Loosen and R. Poprawe
  • VIII/6D2: Thermodynamic Properties of Polymer Solutions: pVT data and miscellaneous properties of polymer solutions, edited by M. D. Lechner

New Handbook of Theoretical Atomic Physics

New Physical Properties of Polymers Handbook

New Raman spectroscopy for the characterization of nanomaterials



[… synthetic biologists are currently working on the notion of “standard biological parts,” or genetic sequences that enable a cell to perform certain standardized tasks. Standardized parts will give practitioners the ability to work in a “higher level language.” In short, synthetic biology is going through the same transition in usability that computing saw in the ’70s and ’80s …]

Physics Nobel Prize

David J. Wineland of the United States and Serge Haroche of France will be awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics  “for ground-breaking experimental methods that enable measuring and manipulation of individual quantum systems”….

see also