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URL of the Weel Archive 2010

December 27, 2010

The Rose Family (Rosaceae)

I was thinking the other day about Robert Frost’s poetry. One of my favorite poems by him is The Rose. It goes: “The rose is a rose, and was always a rose. But now the theory goes that the apple’s a rose, and the pear is, and so’s the plum, I suppose. The dear only knows what will next prove a rose. You, of course, are a rose – but were always a rose.” If you are interested in some factual information about Frost’s “knew” knowledge that the apple and plum are roses, this is a pretty fair site with lots of nice links.


December 20, 2010

Life History and Ecology of Bacteria

The University of California’s Museum of Paleontology houses this site. Among other things, are links to information about bacteria in the fossil record, morphology of bacteria, and bacterial systematics.


December 6, 2010

Treehugger.com - The Slide Shows

I was totally unaware of a site for environmentalists called “Treehugger.com” until this past week. Although the site itself is filled with commercial content, the slideshows found on this page are quite interesting and for all audiences.


November 30, 2010

Comparative Placentation

For more than 140 mammal species this site describes placental anatomy, gestation, implantation, and abnormalities. Accounts feature a wealth of images such as a cross section which shows a 17-day-old mouse fetus in the uterus.


November 23, 2010


This database lists amino acid and DNA sequences for 28 compounds that have antimicrobial effects. More than half of these are products of the Pacific white shrimp (Litopenaeus vannamei). The site also provides a nomenclature guide, a bibliography, and a roster of PCR primers for duplicating penaeidin genes.


November 15, 2010

Darwin Digital Library of Evolution

This goal of this digital library from the American Museum of Natural History in New York City is to post the Darwin body of work, including previously unpublished notebooks and drafts, along with a host of other key evolutionary texts. The library will add works by Darwin’s predecessors, successors, and detractors, including early French anatomist Georges Cuvier, the late Stephen Jay Gould, and Edward O. Wilson.


November 8, 2010

Conus Biodiversity

This site is a catalog of the more than 3000 known Conus species. You can also see photos and drawings of more than 600 type specimens, the original samples researchers used to delineate a species or other taxonomic group. There are a dozen or so video clips that show the predatory snails ambushing and eating their victims.


October 25, 2010

The Ohio River Tributary System Loading Program

In 1974, amid growing concern about pollution in the Great Lakes, researchers at Heidelberg College in Tiffin, Ohio, began tracking the stream chemistry of the state’s rivers. Their work quantified watershed pollutants from sources such as sewage plants and rural runoff, and it led to efforts to stem the flow of agricultural phosphorus into Lake Erie. At this new site, project leader David Baker, now a professor emeritus, and colleagues share their wealth of data on 11 rivers for scientists to use in courses or research. Visitors can download Excel files for more than 88,000 water samples tested for phosphorus, nitrates, suspended solids, and other components. Tutorials put the information in context, and templates help users analyze the data.


October 18, 2010

Global Ethics Observatory

This site includes a “Who’s Who” of nearly 500 ethics experts, a list of some 130 ethics organizations, and a smaller directory of courses. A fourth database on ethics legislation and guidelines is coming later this year.


October 4, 2010

Online Mendelian Inheritance in Animals

Online Mendelian Inheritance in Animals (OMIA) is a database of genes, inherited disorders and traits in more than 135 animal species other than human and mouse, which have their own resources. This site is authored by Professor Frank Nicholas of the University of Sydney, Australia, with help from many people over the years. The database contains textual information and references, as well as links to relevant PubMed and Gene records at the NCBI.


September 27, 2010

Mammalian Species

At this site you can download PDFs of definitive references for more than 700 mammalian species.


September 20, 2010

The Versatile Unit Converter

This tool offers conversion programs to transform miles into kilometers, Celsius into Fahrenheit, and even calculate the wavelength of a photon of energy. The tool can convert energy, length, volume, power, temperature, and so on as well as units of radioactivity, electricity, and magnetism.


September 13, 2010

Listen to Nature

This site holds samples from the British Library’s sound collection. You can hear clips including a yipping Arctic fox, the chirps of a Namibian sand gecko, and the dawn chorus of creatures in an Australian rainforest. In “The Language of Birds”, the site’s creators have bird recordings within a review article containing facts about bird communication.


September 6, 2010

3-D Museum

The bones and shells on display at this site are about as close to hands-on as the Internet gets. It is hosted by the Vertebrate Paleobiology Lab at the University of California, Davis. The exhibit houses remains of more than 20 extinct and living animals, from branching coral to a woolly mammoth tooth. Java windows let you rotate and zoom in on three-dimensional scans of objects.


August 30, 2010

American Museum of Natural History Virtual Bookshelf

This site lets you download all back and current issues for four of the museum’s scientific titles, including its Bulletin and Novitates series. Housing papers from 1881 to the present, the archive encompasses paleontology, geology, systematics, and other fields. For instance, you’ll find anthropologist Franz Boas’s 1909 observations of the Kwakiutl people of Vancouver Island, Canada, and several works by evolutionist Stephen J. Gould.


July 26, 2010

Standards for the Education of Teachers of Science: Skills of Teaching

Summer is a great time to work on pedagogy. If you can teach yourself to match all the standards provided in this Web site your students will be the best educated in the nation!


July 19, 2010

Science NetLinks

This Website contains many types of resources for all the science disciplines at all levels. Resources for lessons are especially noteworthy.


July 12, 2010


Trying to find somebody from your past? Spokeo is not your grandma’s phonebook!


July 5, 2010

Heinsohn’s Country Store

This site is one to put into your favorites for that hard to find something. It may be used to conjure the “good old days” from your childhood, too.


June 27, 2010


This site can help comb 10 databases that contain information on gene location, activity, and effects, including Online Mendelian Inheritance in Man, Swiss-Prot, and the Mouse Genome Database. Users pick a chromosome location linked to a condition, such as cataracts or cleft palate, and then specify an organ or structure in which the gene should be active. The results list genes that match the criteria, along with near misses, such as genes that fall in the right region but don't show the correct expression pattern.


June 21, 2010

Methods for Genomics

This site is not a lab manual, but briefly explains more than 50 widely used genomic methods and pieces of equipment. The primer contains diagrams and animations, and helps students grasp lab methods such as electrophoresis. The content can work as a standalone resource.


June 14, 2010


This site can help you track down everything from samples of the cholera toxin to monoclonal antibodies against leptin, the appetite-adjusting hormone. The site surveys other sources to locate providers of antibodies and reagents. You can search by categories such as gene, organism, and disease. The results often list other molecular products, such as gene-blocking siRNA molecules, along with publications and relevant patents.


June 7, 2010
Wolfram Alpha
This web site and educational tool instantly calculates so many things; math, science, chemistry, physics, financial data, weather, nutrition, health, history, people, etc. An introductory video to see some of the information it is capable of showing you is found at:
http://www.wolframalpha.com/screencast/introducingwolframalpha.html. The link to the actual site after you view the introduction is:  http://www.wolframalpha.com/.

May 31, 2010
American Journal of Bioethics
Science stories with social impact get broad coverage and excellent explanations of issues at this site.

May 24, 2010

Sightsavers International

How do we see? What are some common problems with the eye? Explore the human eye and determine what you might do to save the sight of others in the world.


May 17, 2010

Genomes OnLine Database (GOLD)

Scientists have completed sequencing no fewer than 319 genomes. The site lists information on genome sequencing efforts, such as who performed the sequencing, where the results are housed, and whether they are public or proprietary. GOLD also tracks more than 1300 ongoing projects.


May 10, 2010

The Panda’s Thumb

This Web log highlights evolution-related research, exposing and deposing antievolution pseudoscience such as “intelligent design” (ID). The news media is combed for follies to expose and errors to correct. The site gets its name from a Stephen Jay Gould essay about the giant panda’s adaptation for stripping bamboo leaves.


May 3, 2010


This site complements other HIV sites, such as the sequence bank at Los Alamos National Lab in New Mexico, by spotlighting HIV’s subtype C, the viral variant that predominates in the southern part of the continent. Users can download free software for determining a virus’s subtype or visit a new proteomics section that probes the sequences and structures of HIV's 19 proteins. The site also includes plenty of background on subtype C, including charts that follow its spread starting in the early 1980s.


April 26, 2010

Molecular Expressions

This is probably the largest microscopy site on the Internet. It’s a collection of educational resources including the Optical Microscopy Primer, MicroscopyU, and a “Powers of 10” applet that zooms from space into the cells of an oak leaf. You can find out about early microscope designs, or read up on optics luminaries such as Holland’s Antonie van Leeuwenhoek (1632-1723), the first scientist to see bacteria.


April 19,2010

The Pleistocene – Holocene Event: The Sixth Great Extinction

According to environmentalist Dave Foreman, life today faces the sixth great extinction event in Earth’s history. He says the cause is eating, manufacturing, traveling, warring, consuming, and breeding by six billion human beings. For the first time in the history of life on Earth, one species, Homo sapiens, is waging a war against nature.


April 12, 2010

Bioluminescence Web Page

This site identifies which marine organisms generate light and how they do it. Pages illuminate how bioluminescent organisms exploit this skill, and the site’s gallery contains photos of glowing creatures. For researchers, a forum lists recent publications and announcements of upcoming conferences.


April 6, 2010
Seven Warning Signs of Bogus Science – (from Virginia Malone)
This is adapted from a Robert Parks article originally published in the 31 January issue of The Chronicle Review. The warning signs include: “the discoverer pitches to the media”, “the discoverer claims that some powerful group is suppressing the idea”, and “the idea has endured for centuries, so it must be correct”.

March 29, 2010

HEI Air Quality Database

This site is an air-quality database. The site houses measurements gathered between 2000 and 2004 by an EPA network that monitors fine particles at 54 sites and by more than 200 other stations around the country. Click on a U.S. map to see trends in fine particle levels and components such as ammonium and sulfate at a specific location. You can also download daily measurements of pollutants, along with meteorological data such as temperature and wind speed. The database is free, but you have to e-mail the company to request access.


March 22, 2010

The Spider Myths Site

This site quashes common errors about these arachnids.


March 15, 2010

James D. Watson’s Dissertation

You can leaf through all 92 pages of The Biological Properties of X-ray Inactivated Bacteriophage at the Indiana University’s digital library.


March 8, 2010


This site provides as much information as any good Internet encyclopedia, yet it doesn’t contain a single Web page. Instead of housing static pages about different species, it compiles a profile of your selected organism by linking to molecular, taxonomic, and other sites. Enter “aardvark,” for example, and the engine tracks down images of the mammal, protein and DNA sequences, a list of abstracts from recent papers, and a classification synopsis from the Integrated Taxonomic Information System.


March 1, 2010

American Journal of Bioethics

Science stories with social impact get broad coverage and excellent explanations of issues at this site.


February 22, 2010

The Pacific Northwest Fungi Database

To check on fungal species that dwell north of California, visit this site from Washington State University in Pullman. The growing site catalogs more than 5000 types of fungi. Listings include the species’ classification, who first described it, and the original reference.


February 15, 2010

Membrane Protein Databank

Using this site, you can learn about more than 140 proteins embedded in membranes or positioned near them. The site’s profiles summarize information from other collections and from the literature. Pick a molecule to uncover structural details and whether it harbors any metals or other nonprotein components. The entries also summarize how researchers determined the molecule’s architecture.


February 8, 2010

Arrowsmith Linking Project

This Web site identifies papers written by scientists whose names you input. The site also offers other helpers for returning information from PubMed results to pinpoint common terms in two lists of search results.


February 1, 2010

Genomes OnLine Database (GOLD)

Scientists have completed sequencing no fewer than 319 genomes. The site lists information on genome sequencing efforts, such as who performed the sequencing, where the results are housed, and whether they are public or proprietary. GOLD also tracks more than 1300 ongoing projects.


January 25, 2010


To learn about the habitats, structure, and reproduction of fungi use this site from computer consultant Michael Wood of San Leandro, California. The site reprints a classic mycology text and features articles from experts on topics such as the latest taxonomy and the biology of mycorrhizae. The centerpiece of the site is California Fungi, a guide to more than 400 of the state’s species.


January 18, 2010

Databases on Medicine and Molecular Biology

If you can’t find out about what you want to know about medicine and molecular biology at this site, you’re going to have a hard time finding it at all. The database describes diseases, genetic and molecular defects, and more. It is easy to spend an hour here or a few days!


January 11, 2010

The Panda’s Thumb

This Web log highlights evolution-related research, exposing and deposing antievolution pseudoscience such as “intelligent design” (ID). The news media is combed for follies to expose and errors to correct. The site gets its name from a Stephen Jay Gould essay about the giant panda’s adaptation for stripping bamboo leaves.


2009 TABT URL of the Week
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2003 TABT URL of the Week
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