The Internet is a valuable, rapidly evolving source of the latest results
of academic, scientific, and technical research and innovation. The wealth
of information contained in many Internet web sites is available nowhere
else. It is virtually obligatory for researchers to scour the Internet
for the most up-to-date supplementary material, in addition to collecting
information from traditional sources.
To keep our customers current with this explosion of information, CSA has
added a new feature to complement its already highly popular and heavily-used
CSA Illumina. Our databases of Selected Web Sites are
collections of high-quality web sites that cover a broad base of scientific
and technical topics.
Topics covered by these databases are:
Natural Sciences, including biomedical, environmental, and aquatic sciences
Social Sciences, including linguistics
Arts & Humanities
(coming soon) Aerospace
Our editors work hard to select the best web sites available. We have
researched academic, governmental, scientific and technical web resources,
selected the most useful portions of the web sites, and indexed them to
compile our rapidly growing databases. All links are checked monthly to
ensure that every URL is current. We average a phenomenal rate of less
than 2% dead links.
The high quality of the databases is underpinned by the expertise
and sound judgement of CSA's editorial staff, a team with vast experience
and diverse educational backgrounds. All CSA editors have BS/BA degrees; many
also hold MS/MA and/or Ph.D. degrees. Our editors hold degrees in Anthropology,
Biophysics, Biotechnology, Chemistry, Computer Science, Economics, Environmental
Biology, French, Genetics, Geology, Linguistics, Marine Affairs, Marine Ecology,
Materials Science, Mathematics, Microbiology, Oceanography, Physiology, Political
Science, Psychology, and Sociology.
We follow a set of specific criteria to determine whether a web site
is worthy of inclusion in our databases. The most important criterion
is web site origin; we accept only web sites from reputable sources such
as government agencies, colleges or universities, professional organizations,
or corporations. We include a few home pages of qualified individuals
based on the value of the information presented within the site. If we
cannot verify the source of a web page, we do not include it in our database.
We avoid sites with an obvious political agenda, particularly when evaluating
web sites that deal with environmental issues, which can provoke strong
opinions from special interest groups. Web sites posted by these people
and groups have no place in our Selected Web Sites database. However,
due to the nature of the sociological sciences, which include various
controversial subjects, the Social Sciences database includes some sites
from unusual or controversial sources.
Timeliness and staying power are also important features of a web site
database. Our customers require access to sites that are both current
and permanent. We run an error program monthly that scans our entire database
for "deadlinks" with changed URLs or missing sites. We correct
these errors by hand in order to keep our total number of deadlinks to
a minimum. We also avoid indexing sites that are ephemeral, such as press
releases, news reports, and course syllabi from college professors.
We try to avoid selecting the home pages of very large sites, because
we want our users to have access to information directly related to their
searches. Instead, we index pertinent subpages that will be of more direct
value to our customers.
We also do not include the following types of sites in our databases:
1. Journal abstracts and papers, dissertations, and conference proceedings
2. Pages from individual college professors or laboratories
These types of sites are often no more than a single paragraph summarizing
current research. However, we make an exception for professors' sites
that present very good and useful data.
3. Web sites that are simply catalogs of other web sites
We want to take our customers directly to the web site of interest in
a single click. Providing a link to a web site that is nothing more than
a list of other web sites defeats this purpose.
4. Upcoming conferences and meetings
This is time-dependent information.
5. MSDSs, protein sequences, and gene sequence database search results.
Many such searches are generated on-the-fly and do not have permanent
URLs. This information is readily available outside of our databases.
6. News groups or chat groups
Content at these web sites is generally limited to discussions and expressions
of opinion. There is usually minimal or no presentation of important scientific
A typical record from our Selected Web Sites is displayed first in abbreviated
(graphic of WRD record: 81312)
Record 1 of 250 View Record
TI: The Morphology and Anatomy of Fossil Plants
Clicking on the URL will take a user directly to the page, which remains
in frame to allow easy navigation back to other search results. Clicking
on the View Record option allows users to see more information about that
particular page to enable them to decide whether it is useful for their
Record 1 of 250
The Morphology and Anatomy of Fossil Plants
RL: Resource Location
IP: Information Provider
Museum of Paleontology, University of California, 1101 Valley Life Sciences
Building, Berkeley, CA 94720-4780, USA
origin of life, fossil plants, parenchyma cells, collenchyma cells, sclerenchyma
xylem, phloem, hydroids, homology
AN: Accession Number
This format shows users the source of the information-in this case, a
museum affiliated with the University of California-, the keywords that
are relevant to this particular web site-each is a hyperlink to a new
search that will recall all the records with that keyword-, and the languages
in which the web site appears.
A user can select a set of records and either e-mail them or save them
to his/her own home directory.