|Weekly News Digest
September 20, 2004 — In addition to this week's NewsBreaks article and the monthly NewsLink Spotlight, Information Today, Inc. (ITI) offers Weekly News Digests that feature recent product news and company announcements. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today. For other up-to-the-minute news, check out ITI’s Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.
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Amazon Launches A9.com Search Site
A9.com, Inc., a subsidiary of Amazon.com, Inc., has launched A9.com (http://a9.com) to make searching the Internet more effective. The new site builds on a beta test version the company introduced in April 2004 (see the NewsBreak at http://newsbreaks.infotoday.com/nbreader.asp?ArticleID=16464) that offered Google searching of the Web combined with searches of Amazon's books and site information from Amazon's subsidiary, Alexa Internet. The official launch of A9.com adds several information sources and new search and organizational features. The company says the new site is more of an information management tool.
A9.com now offers users search results from five information sources, which are presented through selectable and adjustable columns: Web and image search provided by Google, book text of more than 100,000 titles from Amazon.com's Search Inside the Book, movie information from the Internet Movie Database, and reference information (encyclopedia, dictionary, etc.) through GuruNet.com. Additionally, A9.com is a search engine with a memory, since it returns results from the user's information. So with every search, users will see results from their own history, bookmarks, and diary.
A9's Diary allows users to record, save, and reference notes about any Web page they visit. Discover, a new feature that is still in beta, presents users with both recommended sites based on their own surfing history (similar to the recommendations provided at Amazon.com) as well as different views of their history, such as most-frequently-visited sites. A9.com will be testing new Discover features and making changes to recommendations based on user feedback.
Source: A9.com, Inc.
BioMed Central Offers Institutional Repository Service
BioMed Central, an independent online publishing firm committed to open access, has launched a repository service for universities and research institutions. Open Repository offers professional help to institutions to quickly and easily build, launch, maintain, and populate their institutional repositories. BioMed Central says the service has been designed to be flexible and cost-effective. The Open Repository service makes it possible for institutions that could not otherwise afford, or lack the infrastructure or technical capacity in-house, to set up repositories.
Open Repository offers a number of different levels of service, to fit with a university or institution's requirements. For a one-off set-up fee, BioMed Central will build the repository with open source software DSpace, with complete customization to the customer's requirements. Repositories built under the scheme will be able to accept a wide variety of publication types. It is then up to the institution whether it wishes BioMed Central to host and run the repository or to transfer operation and maintenance to itself. The institution remains the owner of the repository.
For an annual fee, BioMed Central offers to maintain the repository and guarantee ongoing customer support. BioMed Central's Open Repository service will include converting articles to PDF and XML. Advanced search functionality will be a part of the service, as will links to and from databases, for example PubMed, and via CrossRef to the body of scientific literature.
Source: BioMed Central
SpecInfo Debuts on Wiley InterScience
John Wiley & Sons, Inc. announced the launch of SpecInfo on Wiley InterScience (http://www.interscience.wiley.com). The launch marks the first time Wiley has made the collection available on the Internet through Wiley InterScience.
SpecInfo provides an integrated spectroscopy solution for viewing, predicting, and searching spectra. SpecInfo collections cover three specialized fields: Infrared (IR), Nuclear Magnetic Resonance (NMR), and Mass Spectroscopy (MS). All the data included in SpecInfo are curated—databases are quality-controlled at the point of data preparation and are sourced from reputable laboratories and peer-reviewed literature.
SpecInfo allows users to search by structure, substructure, complete spectra, individual spectral features, chemical names, and molecular properties. Each entry includes chemical name, molecular formula, molecular weight, literature reference, solvent (NMR), standard (NMR), and measurement conditions.
Source: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
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