Scott's Botanical Links--November 2000


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Past links:

November 30, 2000 - Resources for Scientists Teaching Science
This site is geared toward helping scientists encourage critical thinking in teaching. Although the site is part of Cornell's WIM (Writing In the Major) program, there are useful chapters for everyone. Pages are provided on writing assignment ideas, peer review, stimulating discussions, alternatives to large group discussions, reading lists, study questions, how to respond to student writing, exam questions, course syllabi, some teaching examples, teaching links, biology links and writing links. "Using the Web to teach science" should be shared both with students who rely overly much on the Web and those who don't use it enough for what it is well-suited to provide. Site by Anne Stork, Cornell University. (****) -SR
November 29, 2000 - usable information technology
This site by Jakob Nielsen is dedicated to improving the World Wide Web by increasing Web usability for everyone. He has a point. The "Top 10 Mistakes" in Web design are still made (see according to a past Alertbox column, which focuses attention on why some Web pages fail. The common theme is that some Web pages are just too complicated for their own good. Check the past Alertbox columns for good advice on specific issues. There is also a book available, but this site has most of the advice for free. (****) -SR
November 28, 2000 - PACSOA - Palm and Cycad Societies of Australia
Palm and Cycad Societies of Australia is a world-class site, with plentiful digital images and information on both palms and cycads. For each group, there is a genus listing with links to species. The species pages are illustrated with medium-sized jpg images (~350 X 500 pixels, or half-screen for most users) and information on synonymy, common names, habitat, description, general comments and culture. There are also books, posters and magazines available, local chapters and gardens. A well constructed site, well worth a bookmark, by PACSOA. (****) -SR
November 27, 2000 - Global Warming
This site is a two-page long, informative web collection of facts on global warming that presents the science, not the politics of global warming. The site considers the current and past status of temperatures on earth, what is changing them, what man's role is, fun facts about CO2, and provides reports and references. Afterward, a web quiz is presented that examines the major concepts presented. This site is part of the "Plant Fossils of West Virginia" site (featured earlier) by Monte Hieb and Harrison Hieb. (****) -SR
November 22, 2000 - PlantsP: Functional Genomics of Plant Phosphorylation
Once Arabidopsis is fully sequenced, the function of all major gene groups will need to be addressed. This site focuses on the biology of kinases and phosphatases, which are often expressional markers for gene and protein regulation. The site includes a database (with ~1000 current entries), list of protein families, gene knockouts, plant resources, new papers and tools (like BLAST) for analysis of sequences and controls. Gene knockouts will soon be available with specifically inactivated genes for experimental manipulation. Site supported by NSF Genome Project. (***1/2) -SR
November 21, 2000 - Native Orchids of Canada
This site by the The Orchid Society of Royal Botanical Gardens of Canada focuses on ~75 species of orchids that are naturally found in Canada. Entries include location, specific habitat, flowering season, description, comments, references and available images near the end of the page. Species links are provided in a largely alphabetical list. This is a nice site for orchids with some good images. Colour pictures by Dr. Donald R. Gunn; site presented courtesy of the Royal Botanical Gardens, Burlington, Ontario. (***1/2) -SR
November 20, 2000 - Vascular Plants of Henry W. Coe State Park
A comprehensive annotated list of vascular plants of Henry W. Coe State Park (consisting of 81,000-acres of wildlands near San Jose, CA) is now online. The guide has four separate areas: ferns & fern allies, gymnosperms, angiosperms: dicots and monocots. Listings, by families, are illustrated, but the whole guide is currently only four pages requiring a longish download by modem. This guide is a nice model for a state park manual! Site and guide by a longtime resident and volunteer, Lee Dittmann. (***1/2) -SR
November 17, 2000 - Core Historical Literature of Agriculture (CHLA)
The Core Historical Literature of Agriculture (CHLA) contains "a core electronic collection of agricultural texts published between the early nineteenth century and the middle to late twentieth century" on agricultural economics, agricultural engineering, animal science, crops and their protection, food science, forestry, human nutrition, rural sociology, and soil science. Currently there are 4,500 core titles (825 monographs) occupying over 300,000 pages. Series editor is Wallace C. Olsen through the Mann Library, Cornell University. (****) -SR
November 16, 2000 - Metabolic Melodies
Kevin Ahern's "Metabolic Melodies" represents an attempt to make learning metabolism memorable and fun through song. Four titles are currently available: "I'm a Little Mitochondrion", "The Battle Hymn of Biochemistry," "We All Need Just a Little ATP" and "From the Labs of Biochemistry," which are written to familiar tunes. Student and teacher lines are clearly given (as applicable). This is one of those unusual sites that cannot be found when you are looking for them. A fun and humorous site by Kevin Ahern. (***1/2) -SR
November 15, 2000 - Deep Green Hyperbolic Trees
"Deep Green" is an alias for the Green Plant Phylogeny Research Coordination Group -- researchers using molecular data to elucide the evolution of green plants. The relationships between groups of green plants and their antecedents are shown at this site using an interactive tree that changes shape in real time as manipulated by the user's mouse. Very impressive! This is run by a Java applet, so a Java-ready browser is required. A teaching version is provided that is somewhat simpler than the research version. This is a thought-provoking site for those interested in phylogenies, hosted by Jepson Herbarium. (****) -SR
November 14, 2000 - The Wright Books
The Wright Books is an online bookseller specializing in books for gardeners, herbalists, farmers, botanists and cooks. The front page is a search engine, so their collection can be easily accessed by title, author or key words, or by topic (including botany, cacti/succulents, farming, flowers, gardening, herbs, horticulture, plants, trees/shrubs, viticulture, wine/spirits). This is a commercial site that could be useful to bookmark if you are trying to find an out-of-print book. -SR
November 13, 2000 - Specimen MAnagement System for California Herbaria (SMASCH) Project
The SMASCH Project is a model database organization scheme for California Herbaria that was initially funded by NSF. Currently, this collection contains ~300,000 entries that can be searched by scientific, family or common name, county, collector, date of collection, or collection number through a web interface. To search every category and collection type, don't select an option (there is no way to turn some options off once selected!). The site also provides accession data entry procedures, herbarium management procedures, barcoding, and image processing. This site is allied with the Jepson Herbarium, University of California, Berkeley. (****) -SR
November 10, 2000 - Botanical Art from the Gordon Craig Gallery in London UK
Gordon-Craig Gallery offers a well-illustrated botanical art website based on their collection of botanical art by contemporary and past artists. The site features pages on artists, news, gallery, publications, prints and a guest book. This will also be the home of a variety of Curtis' Botanical Magazine illustrations -- a classic of botany from the 1800's. Although not a content-rich educational site, this is still a nice virtual gallery for some excellent botanical art. -SR
November 9, 2000 - Boreal Forest
This course site for BIO 366, Boreal Ecology, provides lecture notes, web links, course information and references for this course taught by Dr. Vincent St. Louis of the University of Alberta, Edmonton (Canada). Detailed lecture notes provide information on northern wetlands and their unique environment. The image on the front page is typical of boreal forest; sadly, there are not images on every page! Nice course notes for an upper-division class (at the university where I received my Ph.D.) (****) -SR
November 8, 2000 - ScienceDaily: Plants & Animals News Summaries
ScienceDaily compiles science news releases submitted by leading universities and research organizations around the world and news stories appearing elsewhere on the Internet. This site delivers science news in its original, unedited form directly from the source. This page has numerous plant stories. It is part of a larger site that also reviews science stories on other life sciences, physical sciences, and science & society. Created by science writer/editor Dan Hogan and his wife, Michele Hogan, in December 1995, Sandy Hook, Connecticut. (****) -SR
November 7, 2000 - NOAA Climate Prediction Center
Climatic predictions provided by the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) carry authoritative value given the satellites, radar and computer hardware at their command. The site provides detailed information on a variety of climatic issues, including U.S. climatic threats, drought assessments, hurricane outlooks, seasonal preditions, ozone depletion, climatic data, and links to their most popular "products." The site index lists numerous documents ranging from oceanic effects, like El Niņo and La Niņa, to Palmer Drought Outlooks, to Pacific Island weather -- overall, about 100 items. Excellent information for ecologists and ecology classes looking at climate change. (****) -SR
November 6, 2000 - DRYAD - a database of trees
DRYAD is a searchable database containing 958 species and cultivars selected for use in an urban environment. Although the database is Dutch, it is written in English -- still useful in North America because many cultivated trees are shared with Europe. The site is searchable by genus or by characteristics, including tree types, size, growth rate, leaf flushing period, leaf colour in summer, leaf colour in autumn, blooming season, and flower color. These characters should be useful in plantings. Individual items contain occurrence, general characteristics, site requirements, landscaping use, leaves and fruits. Site by IBN-DLO (Institute for Forestry and Nature Research) and PUDOC-DLO (a Dutch academic publisher of Wageningen Agricultural University). (****) -SR
November 3, 2000 - International Plant Genetic Resources Institute (IPGRI)
This site features information about the genetic resources & techniques to preserve genetic diversity, detailed information about a broad selection of specific crops, available conferences, network meetings, training events, workshops, training opportunities, search engine and information by country. The numerous information files are available in hardcopy and sometimes in PDF format, readable by using the free Adobe Acrobat Reader. Individual data sheets provide a wealth of technical information and plant data. Many countries have signed this accord, but notably none in North America. Site by IPGRI. (****) -SR
November 2, 2000 - British Wildflowers Online
Unlike many other wildflower sites, this one has a search engine that uses eclectic observations of a plant (e.g., leaf patterns, blooming month, habitat, or for more advanced amateurs, family), returning all of the possible UK species (currently 2000). Entries include abundance, habitat, life history, genus description, flowering time, fruit, synonyms, UK distribution, names in other languages (France, Germany, Greece, Finland, Poland, Spain, Sweden, US, variably complete) and sometimes illustrations. If a simple search obtains no results, keep in mind that browsers sometimes invisibly retain options from prior searches. This is a volunteer effort by Quentin Groom. (***1/2) -SR
November 1, 2000 - Giant Sequoia
"Giant Sequoia" is a site by 5 sixth graders in the ThinkQuest Junior contest of 2000 who were deeply impressed by their visit to a famous sequoia forest in California. There are pages of data on the biggest trees, tree rings, interesting facts, life cycle, ecology, maps, a guestbook, a message board and reference documents (in PDF) to download. This is a very well-researched project, meeting a depth that exceeds some of the freshmen students that I have met. A gold award winner, this site is particularly nice and well-organized. (****) -SR

Past, past links (by date):

2006: January
2005: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
2003: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
2002: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
2001: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
2000: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
1999: January, February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
1998: January*, February*, March*, April*, May*, June*, July, August, September, October, November, December   (*Leigh's links)
1997: January, February, March, April, May, June, September*, October*, November*, December*    (*Leigh's links)
1996: February, March, April, May, June, July, August, September, October, November, December
Or search by: Subject Index