Wolfram|Alpha Blog: Martian Commutes and Werewolf Teeth: Using Wolfram|Alpha for Writing Research. “It’s November, also known as National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). This annual celebration of all things writerly is the perfect excuse for would-be authors to sit down and start writing. For educators and librarians, NaNoWriMo is a great time to weave creative writing into curricula, be it through short fiction activities, campus groups or library meet-ups. During NaNoWriMo, authors are typically categorized into two distinct types: pantsers, who ‘write by the seat of their pants,’ and plotters, who are meticulous in their planning. While plotters are likely writing from preplanned outlines, pantsers may need some inspiration. That’s where Wolfram|Alpha comes in handy.”
The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine: New Report Says ‘Citizen Science’ Can Support Both Science Learning and Research Goals; Inequities in Education, Opportunities, and Resources Must be Addressed to Meet Participants’ Learning Demands . “Scientific research that involves nonscientists contributing to research processes – also known as ‘citizen science’ – supports participants’ learning, engages the public in science, contributes to community scientific literacy, and can serve as a valuable tool to facilitate larger scale research, says a new report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. If one of the goals of a citizen science project is to advance learning, designers should plan for it by defining intended learning outcomes and using evidence-based strategies to reach those outcomes.”
Everybody’s Libraries: Why pay for what’s free? Finding open access and public domain articles. “When you hit a paywall, it’s tempting to give up, look for other articles instead, or take your chances trying to get an illicit copy from sketchy bootleg sites. But there are various ways you can often get a legitimate version of the article you seek without having to pay anything. Here are some avenues you can look into.” Probably not much here for seasoned academics / librarians, but a well-written how-to.
Indiana University: IU will lead $2 million partnership to expand access to research data. “Students, faculty and researchers across the Midwest and beyond will gain critical access to new research data through a cloud-based platform whose construction has been made possible under a large-scale partnership led by the IU Libraries and IU Network Science Institute.”
Engadget: Stephen Hawking’s last paper on black holes is now online. “Stephen Hawking never stopped trying to unravel the mysteries surrounding black holes — in fact, he was still working to solve one of them shortly before his death. Now, his last research paper on the subject is finally available online through pre-publication website ArXiV, thanks to his co-authors from Cambridge and Harvard. It’s entitled Black Hole Entropy and Soft Hair, and it tackles the black hole paradox. According to Hawking’s co-author Malcolm Perry, the paradox “is perhaps the most puzzling problem in fundamental theoretical physics today” and was the center of the late physicist’s life for decades.”
GeekWire: Chan Zuckerberg Biohub launches open-access database of mouse cells to fuel research. “Today the Biohub is launching Tabula Muris, an open-source database that details the biology of the average healthy mouse cell-by-cell, providing a potential gold mine for medical researchers. The database was developed in collaboration with Stanford University and the University of California at San Francisco.”
Scientific Data: An open database of productivity in Vietnam’s social sciences and humanities for public use. “This study presents a description of an open database on scientific output of Vietnamese researchers in social sciences and humanities, one that corrects for the shortcomings in current research publication databases such as data duplication, slow update, and a substantial cost of doing science. Here, using scientists’ self-reports, open online sources and cross-checking with Scopus database, we introduce a manual system and its semi-automated version of the database on the profiles of 657 Vietnamese researchers in social sciences and humanities who have published in Scopus-indexed journals from 2008 to 2018.”