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Weekly News Digest

October 6, 2003 — 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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xrefer Launches Upgraded Service

xrefer, the online ready reference service that provides full-text, aggregated content by subscription to academic, public, and corporate libraries, announced that it has released version 2.0 of its xreferplus service. The new service includes improved information visualization capabilities (a new "Research Mapper"), new content, and a new Unit Conversions calculator (for area, distance, volume, weight, etc.).

The Research Mapper is a visual map that displays how search terms and topics in xreferplus are interconnected. Users can access the Mapper from any set of search results, enabling them to quickly explore the links among topics within the area they're researching. A public version of the Mapper is available at

The Research Mapper leverages xrefer's proprietary "xreference" technology, whereby added xreference links enhance the content by seamlessly connecting related entries. Unlike traditional cross-references, which connect related terms within a single source, xreferences cut across topics, titles, and publishers, as well as text, audio, and image files. The 1.25 million entries, 6,000 images, and 76,000 audio files in the service are xreferenced, providing an integrated user experience.

xrefer continues to add to its content offerings, increasing the number of titles in xreferplus by 80 percent in 2003. Recent additions include The Bridgeman Art Library Archive, Webster's New World Computer Dictionary, Dorland's Illustrated Medical Dictionary, and The Academic Press Dictionary of Science and Technology.

Source: xrefer

FIZ CHEMIE Offers Subject-Specific Search Engines

Germany's "Chemistry Information Centre" (Fachinformationszentrum Chemie, FIZ CHEMIE Berlin) announced it now offers tools to tackle the problem of the hidden Web—three new subject-specific Internet search engines. The company now offers "ChemGuide" (chemistry), "MedPharmGuide" (medicine and pharmacology) and "PublishersGuide" (scientific publishers). These free-to-use search engines access more than 7,000 servers with more than 15 million Web pages, many of which are not accessed by regular search engines, such as information from universities and research institutes. All entry pages found by the "Guides" are evaluated for relevance.

An extensive retrieval language is available for search queries. In addition to the usual Boolean operators, wildcards ('*', '?') may be used and proximity searches are possible. In addition, search result lists may be coupled together with list logic thereby enabling, for example, results common to two lists to be listed in a third list. The search engines also provide retrospective searches and automatic SDIs (Selective Dissemination of Information), offered as annual subscriptions. The search engines are available at FIZ CHEMIE Berlin's Web site by clicking "Databases."

Source: FIZ CHEMIE Berlin

EBSCO Acquires Cinahl

EBSCO Publishing announced that it has completed the acquisition of Cinahl Information Systems from Glendale Adventist Medical Center in Glendale, Calif. CINAHL is a premier nursing and allied health database that was started in the 1940s, and first published in 1961. The CINAHL index is used in most nursing or allied health institutions around the globe, either online or in print.

While the organization is now a part of EBSCO, Cinahl Information Systems and its staff will remain in Glendale. EBSCO Publishing and Cinahl will continue to provide the CINAHL database in its current form, and work together to enhance both the CINAHL database and existing health-related EBSCO Publishing databases.

The CINAHL database indexes over 1,650 journal titles in nursing, allied health, biomedicine, complementary medicine, and consumer health information from 1982 to the present. It also includes indexing of books, book chapters, pamphlets, pamphlet chapters, dissertations, government publications, audiovisuals, software, proceedings, and unpublished material. It includes abstracts and cited references and selected full text. Original documents such as accreditation records, clinical innovations, legal cases, drug records, continuing education modules, research instruments, and Web site descriptions are also included.

EBSCO has purchased a number of indexing-and-abstracting services recently, including Biology Digest, CommSearch, Mass Media Articles Index, Information Science & Technology Abstracts, Internet & Personal Computing Abstracts, and Computer Literature Index.

Source: EBSCO

Send correspondence concerning the Weekly News Digest to NewsBreaks Editor Brandi Scardilli
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