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OSTIblog Articles in the worldwidescience.org (wws) Topic

DOE Open Government Plan 3.0 Highlights OSTI Products

by Peter Lincoln 24 Jun, 2014 in

The Department of Energy recently issued its latest Open Government Plan, and the document recognizes the DOE Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) for advancing open government and the principles of transparency, participation, and collaboration by making scientific and technical information (STI) publicly available.

On his first day in office in January 2009, President Obama signed the Memorandum of Transparency and Open Government, which called on agencies to provide “an unprecedented level of openness in government” and instructed the Director of the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to prepare a directive to “establish a system of transparency, public participation, and collaboration” throughout the federal government. The Administration’s open government directive subsequently issued by OMB required each executive departments and agency to prepare and issue an open government plan in 2010 and every two years thereafter.

OSTI grew out of the post-World War II initiative to make the declassified scientific research of the Manhattan Project as freely available to the public as possible, and throughout its 67-year history, OSTI has built very large collections of energy-related STI, emanating primarily from the work of DOE and its predecessor agencies. Today OSTI makes these STI collections available through sophisticated web products, and its R&D results are accessed more than 400 million times annually.

The DOE Open Government Plan 3.0, published June 1, 2014, included four OSTI products. Featured as new collaboration...

Related Topics: collaboration, National Library of Energy (NLE) - Beta, open government plan, ScienceCinema, SciTech Connect, transparency, WorldWideScience.org (WWS)

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Eleanor Frierson: A Tribute to the Grande Dame of Government Science Information Partnerships

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Eleanor Frierson: A Tribute to the Grande Dame of Government Science Information Partnerships

Eleanor Frierson, who passed away in April 2013, was the grande dame of partnerships to improve public access to federal and international science information.  For 10 years, she helped spearhead U.S. interagency efforts to make federal science information more accessible to Americans, playing an absolutely crucial leadership role on the Science.gov Alliance.  She took Science.gov  all the way from a nascent concept through to its maturation.  Ms. Frierson also made similar contributions to the international science portal, WorldWideScience.org.

She had extensive and diversified experience in information service development and management and had great business acumen and network-building skills.  But Ms. Frierson was much more than a consummate professional; she also was a caring colleague who took great personal interest in her associates.    

Eleanor Frierson was that rare public servant who made a very special mark.  Her legacies continue on today as vital national and international resources. 

* * *

Eleanor Frierson received her B.A. from Oberlin College and her Master’s in Library Science from Syracuse University.  She was a library staff member at Syracuse, the U.S. Department of the Interior and the International Monetary Fund and also served as Chief of the Bureau of Library and Information Services of the International Labour Office in Geneva, Switzerland.

From 2000 until her retirement at the end of 2011, Ms. Frierson was Deputy Director of the National Agricultural Library (NAL), which holds one of the world’s largest collections devoted to agriculture and related sciences.  The NAL is part of the Agricultural Research Service of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Ms. Frierson was honored as Federal Librarian of the Year for 2010 by the...

Related Topics: Eleanor Frierson, interagency cooperation, intergovernmental cooperation, National Agriculture Library, partnership, Science.gov, science.gov alliance, WorldWideScience.org (WWS)

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WorldWideScience – Easy Access to Text, Multimedia, and Data!

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WorldWideScience – Easy Access to Text, Multimedia, and Data!

For many years, scientific information was provided primarily in text-based formats, such as journal articles, conference proceedings, and technical reports.  Increasingly, however, scientists are communicating through multimedia formats (images, videos), and via direct access to their scientific data sets.  Information users face some unique challenges in finding scientific information, particularly when it can take several forms.  Imagine that a climatologist has created data sets detailing precipitation measurements for the North Slope of Alaska.  The climatologist might present these findings first at a meteorological conference, and the presentation might be taped and made available as a video of the conference.  Later, the climatologist publishes one or more technical reports, referring to the original data sets.  How does a user find all this relevant information?

WorldWideScience offers a solution to finding scientific information, regardless of format.  Simply by entering the search terms in a single search box, users can search over 90 databases from around the world.  Furthermore, the search results are segmented into text-based information (the “Papers” tab), images and videos (“Multimedia” tab), and data sets (“Data” tab).  It’s easy to view results in each tab, and users can quickly access relevant text, videos, and data sets.  A variety of English and non-English databases are searched, and WorldWideScience even provides multilingual translations capabilities for 10 languages.  As scientific communication becomes progressively more diverse and global in nature, WorldWideScience enables users to identify and locate scientific and technical information in many formats, all with one straightforward search.

Related Topics: climatologist, databases, foreign, multilingual, multimedia, scientific, WorldWideScience.org (WWS)

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The Secret City Is Emerging from Its Past

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The Secret City Is Emerging from Its Past

Oak Ridge is rapidly emerging from a secret city into the hub of open science information.  How did this happen? It’s an amazing story. 

In 1942, deep within the quiet farm hills of East Tennessee, a secret city called Oak Ridge was created seemingly overnight.  Approximately 75,000 workers worked tirelessly to refine uranium ore into fissionable material. When the first atomic bomb was dropped in Japan and World War II came to an end, their work for the Manhattan Project was revealed to them and to the world. Their secret is still commemorated today. Oak Ridge, Tennessee has much to be proud of:  Science created its beginning and science continues to be vital to its future.

Just 5 years after the birth of Oak Ridge, the Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) was established to manage the atomic information.  Since then, OSTI has become one of the world’s most comprehensive collections of information about energy science and technology.  It is a little known fact – even around Oak Ridge – that OSTI is mandated by law to maintain and make available science and technical information from research, development, demonstration, and commercial applications activities supported by DOE and its predecessors. OSTI not only collects and preserves research reports from nearby Oak Ridge National Laboratory, Y-12 and labs and weapons facilities across the country, the Office is DOE’s mechanism for spreading the word about the results from its $10 Billion investment in annual research and development. OSTI’s creation 65 years ago signaled a sea change from the Secret City of the Manhattan Project toward openness to share R&D knowledge with the public. 

Since its beginning, OSTI has known that shared knowledge is an enabler of scientific progress. And sharing it does.

I recently spoke to the...

Related Topics: osti, Science.gov, WorldWideScience.org (WWS)

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WorldWideScience and data

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WorldWideScience and data

WorldWideScience.org now offers the capability to search scientific data collections.  Six new data sources have been added to WWS.org, representing a significant milestone in improving access to scientific data from around the world.  Users seeking scientific datasets can conduct a real-time, one-stop search and immediately gain access not only to the metadata but to the actual scientific data itself.

WorldWideScience.org’s unique federated searching capability meets many of the challenges users face in the discovery of scientific and numeric data.  Unless users are very familiar with a particular data center or know that specific datasets exist, it is very difficult to identify and locate scientific data.  WWS.org provides access to over 80 of the world’s most authoritative scientific information and data sources, all nationally sponsored or sanctioned.  Users can simultaneously search across many databases/collections in text, multimedia, and data formats, and receive consolidated, relevance-ranked results.  In most cases, links direct the user to the full text document; or in the case of scientific data sources, the user can often link directly to datasets.  As access to scientific data becomes increasingly important, WWS.org offers the ability to easily identify, search, and access this information – contributing to the spread of scientific knowledge and advancements worldwide.

Related Topics: data, databases, multimedia, relevance ranked, scientific, WorldWideScience.org (WWS)

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OSTI by the numbers

by Tim Byrne 02 Nov, 2012 in Products and Content

For those of you who like numbers, I thought I would give you a few numbers about some of OSTI’s databases and search products. 

  • The DOE Information Bridge now has over 300,000 full-text STI reports. While most of these are post 1991, there are over 84,000 reports published prior to 1990.
  • The Energy Citations Database contains over 2.4 million citations and they are not just technical reports. ECD has over 1.4 million journal articles.
  • DOepatents has over 27,000 patents resulting from DOE-sponsored research and development.
  • The E-Print Network searches over 5.5 million e-prints, over 35,000 websites, over 3100 scholarly societies, and over 50 databases.
  • The Energy Science and Technology Software Center (ESTSC) distributes over 1300 software packages.
  • ScienceCinema has over 2600 science and technology related videos for your viewing pleasure.
  • Science.gov searches 55 databases from 13 federal agencies.
  • WorldWideScience.org lets you search 83 collections from over 70 countries in 9 different languages.

Related Topics: DOepatents, E-Print Network (EPN), Energy Citations Database (ECD), Energy Science and Technology Software Center (ESTSC), Information Bridge (IB), Science.gov, ScienceCinema, WorldWideScience.org (WWS)

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Happy Mathematics Awareness Month

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Happy Mathematics Awareness Month

“Pure mathematics is, in its way, the poetry of logical ideas.”

  ~Albert Einstein

As you prepare your taxes, keep in mind that April is  Mathematics Awareness Month.  This year’s theme is, “Mathematics, Statistics and the Data Deluge”.

Mathematics is used throughout the world as an essential tool in many fields, including natural science, engineering, medicine and the social sciences. Large amounts of data are collected every day, and scientific data comes in massive amounts from supercomputers, sensor networks, astronomical instruments and other devices.  These data need to be sorted out and understood in order to be useful.

The White House recently released its Big Data Research and Development Initiative, and OSTI, was recognized as playing a "key role " in shaping the policies and technical implementation of the practice of data citation. Data citation enables efficient reuse and verification of data

OSTI not only ensures that DOE research is tracked, but that a scholarly structure is in place to reward data producers.  OSTI recently implemented a Data Identification Service across the DOE complex through which Digital Object Identifiers (DOIs) are assigned to research datasets, and then registered with DataCite to establish persistence. This initiative makes DOE datasets findable in commercial search engines (e.g. Google) and through federated search portals for science such as the DOE portal ScienceAccelerator.gov, the U.S....

Related Topics: mathematics, Science Accelerator, Science.gov, WorldWideScience.org (WWS)

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Making Scientific Databases Work Together—For You (psst . . . that's "search interoperability")

by Dr. Walt Warnick 13 Feb, 2012 in Technology

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Making Scientific Databases Work Together—For You (psst . . . that's "search interoperability")

Sometimes something complex can work so seamlessly that it’s easy to miss. We think that’s the case with our solution in achieving search interoperability.

As you may know, “search interoperability” is just a fancy way of saying that lots of scientific databases scattered far and wide can be made to work together so that your job as a seeker of science information is easy. You can go to one search box, say Science.gov, type in your search term, and get results from over a hundred important repositories and a couple of thousand scientific websites – with one click.

And you know that this is a good thing, because as a practical matter, you cannot be expected to conjure in advance which database might hold the information you seek. Nor can you be expected to search dozens of sources one-by-one.

That would be an onerous task. Also, as an experienced seeker of quality science information, you are well aware that commercial search engines (read, Google, Bing, etc.) sometimes cannot mine the deep web for you, thus missing R&D results residing there (see Federated Search - The Wave of the Future?).

So achieving search interoperability with OSTI’s federated search tools, such as Science.gov, WorldWideScience.org, and the E-print Network, has been an important development, though by no means easily accomplished. There are myriad obstacles that can block information exchanges between systems.  (To learn more about the broad topic of interoperability and obstacles to exchanging information, see the Wikipedia article on interoperability.)

Specific to our world of scientific and technical information, the challenge of interoperability basically stems from the simple fact...

Related Topics: databases, E-Print Network (EPN), federation, interoperability, science, Science.gov, WorldWideScience.org (WWS)

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International Education Week 2011

International Education Weekwas first held in 2000; today it's celebrated annually in more than 100 countries worldwide.  IEW is a joint initiative of the US Departments of Stateand Education, and is part of the federal government’s efforts to promote programs that prepare Americans for a global environment and attract future leaders from abroad to study, learn and exchange experiences in the United States.

Science and technology have been and will continue to be engines of US economic growth and national security. Excellence in discovery and innovation in science and engineering and in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) education will strengthen the US economy, increase the capacity of US research and sustain our nation’s leadership role in increasingly competitive international science.

The Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves and disseminates DOE-sponsored R&D results that are outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions. OSTI believes that accelerating the sharing of scientific knowledge accelerates the advancement of science.  OSTI ensures global access to DOE research results and brings the world’s research to DOE.

OSTI’s databases are made available to the public free of charge via single-point-of-access web portals such as ScienceAccelerator.gov (R&D from DOE resources), Science.gov (U.S. science information from 14 federal agencies), and WorldWideScience.org (global science information from over 70 countries in ten...

Related Topics: education, Science Accelerator, Science.gov, WorldWideScience.org (WWS)

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“The New Einsteins Will Be Scientists Who Share.”

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“The New Einsteins Will Be Scientists Who Share.”

In an October 29, 2011 Wall Street Journal article, “The New Einsteins Will Be Scientists Who Share,”  Dr. Michael Nielsenstated that networked science has the potential to speed up dramatically the rate of discovery across all of science, and that we may well see the day-to-day process of scientific research change more fundamentally over the next few decades than over the past three centuries. He also noted that there are major obstacles to achieving this goal, including the lack of a systematic effort by scientists to adopt new tools of discovery or to share data – because they are busy, they may believe it’s a diversion from their “real” work or because they may not be familiar with the means to do so easily.

OSTI knows that the public and members of the scientific community may not be familiar with the multitude of different science databases.  OSTI addresses and solves these considerable challenges by providing vehicles for obtaining targeted, precise information quickly and easily.  We believe that shared knowledge is the enabler of scientific progress, and that accelerating the sharing of knowledge will accelerate discovery.  To these ends, OSTI uses and extends modern communication technologies.  Our databases are the largest national sources of energy and science R&D information in the world. 

OSTI resources include:

Science Accelerator, a gateway to DOE research and development (R&D) projects and programs, descriptions of R&D projects underway or recently completed, major R&D accomplishments, and recent research of interest to DOE.  The user can learn about ongoing research projects, explore significant DOE discoveries, learn about DOE Nobel Prize Winners, access and search scientific e-prints...

Related Topics: Albert Einstein, information sharing, Science Accelerator, Science.gov, WorldWideScience.org (WWS)

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