Health & Science

04 September 2009 

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Website of the Week Archive

Care to suggest a Website of the Week? Email us with your recommendation. We'll consider all nominees and give you credit on the air if we use your suggestion. OurWorld@voanews.com.

Pro Publica (5 September 2009)
Eyewitness to History (31 August 2009)
Smithsonian Science (24 August 2009)

Open Sound New Orleans (17 August 2009)
State of the Birds (8 August 2009)
The Nutrition Source (1 August 2009)
Linus Pauling Online (25 July 2009)
We Choose The Moon (17 July 2009)
Big Think (10 July 2009)
Charters of Freedom (4 July 2009)
Evidence: How Do We Know What We Know? (26 June 2009)
Cassini Equinox Mission (22 June 2009)
AlternativeTo.net (13 June 2009)
Seed Magazine (6 June 2009)
Oyez (30 May 2009)
Wolfram Alpha (22 May 2009)
World Hum (16 May 2009)
World Digital Library (8 May 2009)
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (1 May 2009)
FixYa (24 April 2009)
The Visual MD (18 April 2009)
ArtBabble (11 April 2009)
Wikitravel (4 April 2009)
100 Hours of Astronomy (28 March 2009)
Circle of Blue (21 March 2009)
Britannica Guide to Women's History (14 March 2009)
Academic Earth (07 March 2009)
AfriGadget (28 February 2009)
PsychCentral (21 February 2009)
Slavery Images (14 February 2009)
Darwin Online (07 February 2009)
American Fact Finder (31 January 2009)
WhiteHouse.gov (24 January 2009)
My Family Health Portrait (17 January 2009)
Free Rice (10 January 2009)
Use-Less-Stuff.com (27 December 2008)
CollegeClickTV (19 December 2008)
Footnote.com (13 December 2008)
Bartleby.com (06 December 2008)
World AIDS Campaign (29 November 2008)
U.S. Foreign Agricultural Service (22 November 2008)
Census of Marine Life (15 November 2008)
International Year of the Potato (7 November 2008)
Project Vote Smart (1 November 2008)
World Database on Protected Areas (25 October 2008)
Consumerist.com (18 October 2008)
Ars Technica (11 October 2008)
DistroWatch (4 October 2008)
American Presidency (27 September 2008)
Urban Dictionary (20 September 2008)
(13 September 2008)

Environmental News Network (6 September 2008)
JohnMcCain.com (30 August 2008)
BarackObama.com (23 August 2008)
AmphibiaWeb (16 August 2008)
SnagFilms (9 August 2008)
NASA Images (2 August 2008)
Theban Mapping Project (26 July 2008)
Ultimate Ungulate (19 July 2008)
Rainforest Portal (12 July 2008)
Monticello (5 July 2008)
World Community Grid (28 June 2008)

Civil Engineering History (21 June 2008)
Pew Research (14 June 2008)
Potus.com (7 June 2008)

Mars Society (31 May 2008)
Cancer.gov (24 May 2008)
Design for the Other 90% (17 May 2008)

Wired for Books (10 May 2008)

Darwin Online (3 May 2008)

RealClearPolitics (26 April 2008)
Metacritic (19 April 2008)
Scirus (12 April 2008)

World Food Situation (5 April 2008)
Intimate Circles (29 March 2008)
Campaign 2008 (22 March 2008)
Slashdot (15 March 2008)
Instructables (8 March 2008)

National Museum of Women in the Arts (1 March 2008)
African-American Migration Experience (23 February 2008)
Smithsonian Photography (16 February 2008)

MIT OpenCourseWare (9 February 2008)
OpenCRS (2 February 2008)
ScienceBlogs (26 January 2008)
American Presidency (19 January 2008)

StopBadware (12 January 2008)
StumbleUpon (5 January 2008)
Group Recipes (22 December 2007)
Field Museum (15 December 2007)
Universal Digital Library (8 December 2007)
Antarctica Mosaic (1 December 2007)
NIST Virtual Museum (24 November 2007)
Poetry Foundation (17 November 2007)
FactCheck.org (10 November 2007)
UWire (3 November 2007)
LANL Periodic Table (27 October 2007)
Smithsonian African American Museum (13 October 2007)
Star Count (6 October 2007)
Arts Journal (29 September 2007)
Open Secrets (22 September 2007)
Safe Drinking Water is Essential (15 September 2007)
IEEE Virtual Museum (8 September 2007)
How Stuff Works (1 September 2007)
AltLaw (25 August 2007)
Wessels Living History Farm (18 August 2007)
Global Health Facts (11 August 2007)
YourDictionary (4 August 2007)
Pesticide Information (28 July 2007)
The Bathroom Diaries (21 July 2007)
WikiHow (14 July 2007)
USDA Plants Database (7 July 2007)
Technology Review (30 June 2007)
Harvard Open Collections (23 June 2007)
FedStats (16 June 2007)
HiRISE Mars images (9 June 2007)
Chemical Heritage (2 June 2007)
Molecular Expressions (26 May 2007)
WomensHealth.gov (19 May 2007)
Encyclopedia of Life (12 May 2007)
US Holocaust Memorial Museum (5 May 2007)
Earth Portal (28 April 2007)
PlanetQuest (21 April 2007)
Project Gutenberg (14 April 2007)
Penn Museum (7 April 2007)
Lifehacker (31 March 2007)
Centers for Disease Control (24 March 2007)
Voices of Youth (17 March 2007)

Fora.tv (10 March 2007)
National Geographic MapMachine (3 March 2007)
The Rosetta Project (24 February 2007)
National Snow and Ice Data Center (10 February 2007)
FamilySearch.org (3 February 2007)
Ask the Van (27 January 2007)
Mayo Clinic (20 January 2007)
National Archives (13 January 2007)
MarsToday.com (6 January 2007)
Macaulay Library of Natural Sounds (23 December 2006)
National Historic Chemical Landmarks(16 December 2006)
Journal of Visualized (9 December 2006)
National Postal Museum (2 December 2006)
Univ. of TexasLibrary Map Collection (18 November 2006)
Veterans History Project (11 November 2006)
CampaignNetwork.org (4 November 2006)
Open Directory Project – DMOZ (21 October 2006)
National Biological Information Infrastructure (14 October 2006)
NobelPrize.org (7 October 2006)
Allen Brain Atlas (30 September 2006)
Vincent Voice Library (23 September 2006)
Spitzer Space Telescope (16 September 2006)
National Museum of American History (9 September 2006)
National Hurricane Center (2 September 2006)
Tox Town (26 August 2006)
Amazing Space (19 August 2006)
Obscure and Historic Patents (12 August 2006)
Speech Accent Archives (5 August 2006)
Ship Tracker on Sailwx.info (29 July 2006)
The Prime Pages (22 July 2006)
Lemelson-MIT Program (15 July 2006)
Tinfoil.com (8 July 2006)
Pets in America (1 July 2006)
MarineBio.org (24 June 2006)
National Atlas of the U.S. (17 June 2006)
ReliefWeb (10 June 2006)
NASA Earth Observatory (3 June 2006)
Jurist (20 May 2006)
LibraryThing (13 May 2006)
GovTrack (6 May 2006)
Aerospaceweb.org (29 April 2006)
Earth Day Network (22 April 2006)
Freecycle.org (15 April 2006)
Acronym Finder (8 April 2006)
Poets.org (1 April 2006)
Google Mars (25 March 2006)
Gifts of Speech (18 March 2006)
Dogpile (11 March 2006)
Encyclopedia Astronautica (4 March 2006)
AfriGeneas (25 February 2006)
Patient Inform (18 February 2006)
Occupational Outlook Handbook (11 February 2006)
Booker T. Washington Papers (4 February 2006)
Oyez (28 January 2006)
Science.gov (21 January 2006)
Annals of Improbable Research (14 January 2006)

[ Website of the Week took a Winter vacation 24 December – 7 January ]

Urban Legends Reference Pages (17 December 2005)
Eye Level (10 December 2005)
WolframTones (3 December 2005)
EurekAlert (19 November 2005)
NASA Solar System Exploration Home Page (12 November 2005)
Greatest Engineering Achievements of the 20th Century (5 November 2005)
Computer History Museum(29 October 2005)
Recipezaar (22 October 2005)
Wikiquote (15 October 2005)
StoryCode (8 October 2005)
Einstein Archives Online (1 October 2005)
Constitution Finder (24 September 2005)
Gizmodo (17 September 2005)
SourceForge (10 September 2005)

ECHO (20 August 2005)—The ECHO project (at George Mason University) includes a catalogue of 5,000 websites relating to the history of science, technology and industry, plus information and tools for those who want to create their own online science history site. ECHO's Dan Cohen says they aim to provide "a centralized resource for studying the history of science and technology online."

Hacker Highschool (13 August 2005)—Critical thinking is a key element incomputer security, and that's the approach ofthese lessons, which are aimed at teenagers and can be studied online or taught in a classroom. "Mostly the focus is on how to identify threats ...for example, spam," says Managing Director Pete Herzog. The program is available in several languages, and is used by schools, individuals, and home-schooling families.

Merck Manual (6 August 2005)— The widely-respected medical reference for doctors, along with a Home Edition for lay people, is one of the most valuable online sources of health information. And authoritative, too: "We have over 300 authors, who are world experts in their field," says Associate Editor Rob Porter.

History Wired (30 July 2005) — The Smithsonian Institution presents an innovative, multi-layered way of discovering objects in the collection of the Museum of American History. "It packs a lot of functionality and a lot of information into a relatively small space," says museum official Matt MacArthur.

Watching America (23 July 2005) — Read news stories about the United States as viewed by the international press. Sometimes the stories are highly critical, but "we also want to show fairly the spectrum of opinion that's out there in the world," says publisher Robin Koerner. Stories in other languages are translated into English, with links back to the original version.

OR-Live (16 July 2005) — Watch the latest surgical procedures in live webcasts direct from state-of-the-art operating rooms. You can even e-mail questions direct to the OR. "The ability to access the world's leading surgeons ... really gives everybody access that they might otherwise not have," says company official Peter Gailey. In addition to the live operations, some 200webcasts are archived for on-demand viewing.

Dinosaurs: Ancient Fossils, New Discoveries (9 July 2005) — New York's famed American Museum of Natural History showcases the latest in dinosaur scholarship. The museum has long been known forits dinosaur exhibits, butonline visitors will have some advantages over museum-goers. "In some cases they'll even be able to get some better looks at things, up closer than they'll be able to see in the exhibit itself," says curator Mark Norell."

10 x 10 (2 July 2005) — An exciting new way to look at news. Instead of headlines, a grid of 100 photos guides the viewer to the top stories of the hour. "You get this visual barometer of importance— sort of like you do with a traditional newspaper when you look at the size of a headline," says the site's creator, New York-based artist Jonathan Harris.

Monterey Bay Aquarium (25 June 2005) —Live webcams take you into the aquarium"so that anyone in the world can enjoy the beauty of the ocean habitat without being near the ocean or having the opportunity to come to the aquarium," says web manager Jane Cross. The site also include information for students and teachers, conservation guidance for seafood consumers, and behind-the-scenes videos.

Volcano World (18 June2005) —"Our primary purpose is to make sure that current activity is catalogued," says website team member Prof. Shan De Silva, but there's also historic background on active and dormant volcanoes around the world ... and elsewhere, too. Volcanologists describe their work in one section; in another, teachers can find lesson plans and directions on how to build a classroom volcano model.

Interactive Atlas of the World's Languages in Danger of Disappearing (11 June 2005) —The UN'scultural unitgoes online with its definitive guide to threatened languages. Languages are an embodiment of the culture of a people, and "if a language dies out, then this body of knowledge, this culture also dies out," says UNESCO's Sabine Kuba. This new site went live only last month, and starts with endangered languages in Africa, with other regions to follow.

Smithsonian Asian Art Museums (Freer-Sackler) (4 June 2005) — If you can't come to Washington to enjoy the spectacular Asian art treasures in America's national museum, you can enjoy a virtual visit (without the crowds). "We feel that we should reach out to a much broader audience, especially the audience in Asia," says chief curator Massumeh Farhad. The website also features objects that are not currently on display in the galleries.

Paleontology Portal (28 May 2005) — Explore "deep time" by region or era on this easy-to-navigate website. This high-quality site is sponsored in part by the Univ. of California Museum of Paleontology, where David Lindberg explains that visitors "can explore different groups [of prehistoric animal species], and then again you can go laterally into a time period to find out what the plants" were like during that period.

Historical Anatomies on the Web (21 May 2005) — High-quality scanned images from beautiful and scientifically significant books picturing the human body and its internal structures. The earliest volume online was published in 1543 by Andreas Vesalius, and it was a "revolution in the study of medicine and anatomy," says the curator of the online exhibit, Michael North. "And from then on, the anatomies basically just started getting better and better."

National Academy of Sciences InterViews (14 May 2005) — Top researchers speak in hour-long audio interviews "designed to give you a bit of the taste of what they do and also a bit about their careers and how they got to where they are," says Academy spokesman Bill Skane. You'll learn about the routine of a working scientist, and they talk about what got them interested in a science career.

Sense of Smell Institute (7 May 2005) — Research and information about the science of olfaction.The right aroma"definitely can elevate your mood; it can help definitely increase your performance" on the job, says executive director Terry Molnar. Nose around this site (sorry!) for the latest fragrance research or the basics in an onlinecourse called Smell 101.

Food and Nutrition Information Center (30 April 2005) — Nutrition guidance from the US Dept. of Agriculture's National Agricultural Library. This website "offers a very broad depth of information on a variety of food and nutrition topics," says registered dietician Cathy Alessi, one of the nutritional professionals who keeps the site up-to-date.

Earth Day Network (23 April 2005) — The Earth Day Network aims to take environmental activism to the other 364 days each year by stressing personal and community involvement. "We have something like 12,000 organizations globally, who in some way participate in our network," says the group's vice president, Mary Minette.

Migration Information Source (16 April 2005) — This site is half-magazine, half-database, with raw numbers and analysis of migration issues, both from countries that receive migrants and the nations they come from. "We've created, I think, some really good interactive tools that people can use to get a better sense of this," says managing editor Kim Hamilton.

Science News for Kids (9 April 2005) — From the respected publisher of "Science News" magazine comes this website with information aimed at children ages about 9–15. With weekly articles on current developments, "kids are actually learning what scientists are reporting as it's happening," says online editor Ivars Peterson.

Earthquake Hazards Program (2 April 2005) — Information about the latest seismic events is posted online as soon as minutes after the event. Maps help you focus on major earthquake zones worldwide. And there's plenty of background information for students, teachers and anyone who's curious. "If you want to learn about earthquakes, you can go here first," says webmaster and geophysicist Lisa Wald.

American Memory (26 March 2005) — The online digital collection of the Library of Congress includes 10 million items, including handwritten presidential documents, early motion pictures,maps, and photographs. Audio resources include rare folk music and "oral histories of former slaves as to what their experiences were during the time of slavery," says the library's Guy Lamolinara.

National Center for Health Statistics (19 March 2005) — The numbers tell the story: disease, life expectancy, health insurance coverage, hospital admissions, and more. Much of the information is "actually available even before the printed copy" is published,says spokesperson Sharon Ramirez.

National Women's Hall of Fame (12 March 2005)— The Hall of Fame honors more than 207 American womenwho have had"enduring, broad and significant impact across the country and/or across the world," says executive director Billie Luisi-Potts. Our choice of this website is in observance of Women's History Month.

CensusScope(5 March 2005)— Demographic information is available on the government's own website, but for ease of use and maps and graphs that help non-specialists navigate through the date, you might try CensusScope, which also provides comparisons between the 2000 census and the previous one."On our site you can get them both at the same time and then see a graph on top of it to see how they compare," says CensusScope director Bill Frey.

The Why Files (26 February 2005) — For almost a decade, the Why Files, a project of the University of Wisconsin, has been providing in-depth articles on science topics in the news. "We try to dig behind the headlines to find our stories," says editor Terry Devitt.

NASA Real Time Satellite Data(19 February 2005)

African American Migration Experience (12 February 2005) — From the New York Public Library, a different way of looking at African American history during Black History Month.The online exhibit includes "25,000 pages of material ... to tell this really remarkable story in a very in-depth way," says Howard Dodson, who heads the library's Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture.

Quantum Diaries (5 February 2005) — Some 30 physicists from 10 countries keep visitors up-to-date about their science and their lives. "They talk about their research in physics," says managing editor Chelsea Wald. "And they also write about stuff that's personal to them, their families [and] friends." It's a fascinating look"behind the curtain"at how science is practiced before those breakthroughts are announced.

Flags ofthe World(29 January 2005)— Images of some 48,000 flags are included in this comprehensive site (which has its own flag!). Contemporary national flags are just the beginning. The site also includes flags of "military [and] naval agencies, ... states and provinces, flags of municipalities, cities and towns, even some of individuals, like the royal family," says FOTW director Rob Raeside, geology professor and amateur vexillologist.

Space.com(22 January 2005) — For the latest in news from the frontiers of human spaceflight, robot probes, even the search for extra-terrestrial intelligence (SETI), check out this site, where science isn't stuffy. "We think that space should be cool," says managing editor Anthony Duignan-Cabrera. "The strength of Space.com is that it fires the imagination by presenting space and related subjects in an imaginative way."

Martin Luther King, Jr., Papers Project (15 January 2005) — Read and hear the words of the slain civil rights leader from the Stanford University enterprise that is publishing the definitive 14-volume series of Dr. King's writings. Thanks to the Internet, "hundreds and even thousands of documents are available on our website, and people throughout the world can get access to information that just 20 years ago was only available to a handful of researchers," says King Papers editor Clayborne Carson.

Weather.com (8 January 2005) — The online version of popular US cable television service The Weather Channel, this site provides current conditions and forecasts for nearly 100,000 locations worldwide. Forecasts begin with sophisticated computer models, says Weather.com's Tom Flournoy,"and then we have humans, 24-hours a day, meteorologists who look at the forecasts and if they see an anomaly ... they will correct the forecast."

[ Website of the Week took a Winter vacation 25 December– 1 January]

MathForum (18 December 2004)— MathForum is "an online educational community that supports learning of mathematics and teaching of mathematics, pretty much arithmetic through calculus," says director Steve Weimar. Features include "Teacher2Teacher," where math instructors can exchange tips, and "Ask Dr. Math," for students needing help in geometry, algebra, and so on. The site has been online since 1992, so there's a huge archive of math-related information available here.

OneLook Dictionary Search (11 December 2004) — OneLook is a specialized search engine that allows you to simultaneously look for a term in about 1,000 online dictionaries.Some are general purpose English dictionaries. Others, says founder Bob Ware, are quite specialized, reflecting the breadth of the Internet: "There's technical dictionaries out there; there's dictionaries of terms used in home construction,... medical fields and the legal fields." You can also search language dictionaries.

Craigslist (4 December 2004) — Craig Newmark started craigslist in San Francisco in 1995 as a kind of online bulletin board. There are now local versions in some 70 cities, with new ones being added all the time. CEO Jim Buckmaster says the most popular category is "jobs, followed by housing, followed by for-sale, and then by personals. ... And I should say it varies quite a bit from the city."Craigslist charges for employment adsin three U.S. cities, but everything else is free.

Archaeology.org (27 November 2004)
MoMA.org (20 November 2004)
Oanda.com (13 November 2004)
Food and Drug Administration (6 November 2004)
Population Reference Bureau (30 October 2004)
Skeptic's Dictionary (23 October 2004)
Tolerance.org(16 October 2004)
NobelPrize.org (9 October 2004)
EngineerGirl.org (2 October 2004)
USDA Agricultural Research Service (25 September 2004)
U.S. Naval Observatory (11 September 2004)
Arts & Letters Daily (4 September 2004)
Exploratorium (28 August 2004)
Folding @ Home (21 August 2004)
Today's Front Pages (14 August 2004)
Insects.org (7 August 2004)
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (31 July 2004)
Online Books Page (24 July 2004)
Forests.org (17 July 2004)
MedlinePlus (10 July 2004)
Museum of Online Museums (3 July 2004)
How Stuff Works (26 June 2004)
Beliefnet (19 June 2004)
Wikipedia (12 June 2004)
Sky and Telescope (5 June 2004)
Gmail Swap (29 May 2004)
Chemistry.org (22 May 2004)
Hubblesite (15 May 2004)
Librarians' Internet Index (8 May 2004)
Center for the History of Physics (1 May 2004)
NOAA Ocean Explorer (24 April 2004)
UNESCO World Heritage Center (17 April 2004)
Internet Archive (10 April 2004)