A Biologist's Guide to Internet Resources Version 1.5, 13 July 1993 Una Smith Department of Biology email@example.com Yale University New Haven, Connecticut 06511 -*- 4. Commercial Services The three most common types of commercial services are (1) restricted-use computer accounts allowing Internet access (e-mail or full access) via modem from personal computers, (2) on-line bibliographic databases that can be searched via modem or over the Internet, and (3) access via modem or the Internet to private Usenet-style special-interest networks, but only e-mail access to the rest of the Internet. This third type of service is rapidly disappearing as vendors add full Internet access to subscribers to keep them from going to another service vendor. For the benefit of people without full Internet access (telnet and FTP in addition to e-mail), Peter Kaminski maintains a list of commercial access providers (Kaminski 1993). E-mail requests for this list can be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org: use "send PDIAL" as the subject. The best sources of information about Internet resources, for readers who do not have access to the Internet, are the books on the Internet listed in the bibliography, and many other published literature with the words "Internet", "online" or "database" in the title. There are many such books available now, as publishers everywhere realize that money can be made on the new Electronic Frontier. However, much of the information in these compendium books is out of date even before the book appears in print. Also, it is generally compiled by people who are not well acquainted with the materials, and thus poorly organized. Much of the information was gathered by soliciting data from administrators or suppliers of databases. This data, in current form, is best gathered directly from the source, via the Internet. The best strategy is to learn to cruise the Internet yourself, with the help of a a "tool" book such as Kehoe (1992) or Krol (1992; or if you can't find those at your local bookstore, some alternatives are Goldman 1992, Lane and Summerhill 1992, LaQuey and Ryer 1992, Malamud 1992 or Tennant et al. 1993) and learn where in the Internet to look periodically for notices about resources of interest to you. -*- 5. Useful and Important FAQs You will learn a great deal about the Internet and what it has to offer if you read some of these FAQs. If you still want to know more, browse around in Usenet. Also, a number of books have been published recently that give a very thorough guide to the Internet; see the bibliography and check your local academic bookstore or university library. The files below are stored in pub/usenet/news.answers/ in the anonymous FTP archive on rtfm.mit.edu, and are posted frequently to the Usenet newsgroups news.answers, comp.answers and sci.answers, as appropriate. See section 3.6.2, Anonymous FTP for help retrieving these FAQs via e-mail or FTP. See section 2.3.3, Usenet FAQs about Usenet for a list of titles. Title Archive filename -------------------------------------------------------------------- General resources Gopher [FAQ] gopher-faq comp.infosystems.wais FAQ wais-faq/getting-started WAIS FAQ wais-faq/sources FAQ: College Email Addresses college-email/part[1-3] FAQ: How to find people's E-mail addresses finding-addresses FAQ: International E-mail accessibility mail/country-codes How to Get Information about Networks network-info/part1 Public Dialup Internet Access List pdial Updated Internet Services List internet-services Mailing Lists Available in Usenet bit/gatelist How to find sources finding-sources Anonymous FTP List - FAQ ftp-list/faq Anonymous FTP List - Sites ftp-list/sites[1-3] Mail Archive Server (MAS) software list mas-software Scientific resources A Biologist's Guide to Internet Resources biology/guide Biological Information Theory biology/info-theory and Chowder Society Computer Science Technical Report techreport-sites/list Archive Sites Computer Graphics Resource Listing graphics/resources-list/ part[1-3] FAQ in comp.ai.neural-nets neural-net-faq Sources of Meteorological Data FAQ weather-data Space FAQ space/* [15 parts] Amos Bairoch has assembled a very useful list of Molecular Biology Archives and Mailservers which is available on many FTP sites, and in the Usenet newsgroup bionet.announce. Paul Hengen has written an FAQ about new methods in molecular biology for the bionet.molbio.methds-reagnts newsgroup. It is available via anonymous FTP on ncifcrf.gov in pub/methods/FAQlist. Virgil Sealy and Lisa Nyman have written an FAQ for comp.infosystems.gis (and the gated GIS-L mailing list). You can also get this FAQ by sending e-mail to email@example.com (no message necessary), or you can get it via anonymous FTP from dg-rtp.dg.com in the file /gis/faq. Bill Thoen has written "Internet Resources for GIS/CARTO/Earth Science", which is available via anonymous FTP from csn.org in the COGS/ directory. Ken Boschert keeps The Electronic Zoo, a list of mailing lists, archives, and dial-up BBS systems that have something to do with animals (including humans). The most recent version can be retrieved via anonymous FTP from wuarchive.wustl.edu in /doc/techreports/wustl.edu/compmed/elec_zoo.txt. The list has many items not mentioned in this guide. Lee Hancock keeps Internet/Bitnet Health Sciences Resources, a document that can be retrieved via anonymous FTP from ftp.sura.net, in the pub/nic/ directory, file name medical.resources.<version>. In the same directory is Wilfred Drew's Not Just Cows, a guide to Internet resources in agriculture and related sciences; get the file named agricultural.list. -*- 5.1. What's an FAQ and where can I get one? There are now hundreds of Internet documents, including this one, written expressly to answer frequently asked questions. They are often refered to in the Usenet community as FAQs. You will find them in the Usenet newsgroup news.answers (and subsets in sci.answers, comp.answers, and news.answers.newusers). The Usenet FAQ repository is an anonymous FTP archive on rtfm.mit.edu (RTFM stands for Read The <bleep> Manual), in the directory pub/usenet/news.answers/. See section 3.6.2, Anonymous FTP, for details, including instructions for retrieving any Usenet FAQ via e-mail. -*- 5.2. Does anyone have an e-mail address for X? Please, don't ask this in a newsgroup or mailing list. It's rude! The quickest, most efficient way to answer this is to call or write to X directly. If anyone can help you with this, it's X. To date, most biologists don't have e-mail addresses, or if they do, they don't read their e-mail very often, so you really are better off contacting them directly. If you must try to find this information via the computer networks, please start by reading Kamens (1993a) or Lamb (1993) or the relevant section of one of the books listed in the bibliography. Also, you can check for the latest strategy in bionet.users.addresses. But wait, there's more: many gopher servers listed in this guide have searchable directories of biologists (see section 3.2, Directories). -*- 5.3. How to find a good graduate program? Go talk to the undergraduate or graduate advisor in your department, if you're a college student. Start browsing through the scientific journals, and the new book stack in the library. Ask your favorite professors for advice. Sadly, the Internet can not be all things to all people, and questions about how to pick graduate programs generally do not get satisfactory replies. One way you can use the Internet to explore graduate programs is by browsing through campus information directories via gopher. -*- 5.4. Where can I get old newsgroup/mailing list articles? All the biology-related Usenet newsgroups (since 1991) are archived for searching via gopher, WAIS, and anonymous FTP on ftp.bio.indiana.edu, in the directory /usenet/bionet/. The bionet newsgroups (some dating back to 1987) are archived for WAIS and anonymous FTP on net.bio.net. Browse through gopher land for additional Usenet newsgroup archives. Most listserver mailing lists are archived on the computer where they are administered. To subscribe and get an index of log files on the listserver archive for the ECOLOG-L mailing list, for example, send e-mail to listserv@UMDD.umd.edu with the text: subscribe ECOLOG-L Your Name index ECOLOG-L -*- 5.5. Where can I find biology-related job announcements? The bionet.jobs newsgroup is a good place to start, but you might also want to check the ECOLOG-L listserver mailing list, which is run by the Ecological Society of America and carries many job announcements. Most other newsgroups and mailing lists carry occasional job notices. The American Physiological Society offers announcements appearing in The Physiologist via gopher on gopher.uth.tmc.edu (port 3300). Usenet has several newsgroups devoted to jobs: misc.jobs.*. -*- Acknowledgements This guide is Santa Fe Institute Working Paper # 93-06-038. This guide would not have been written without the financial support and intellectual tolerance of Duke and Yale Universities; it was organized (or organized itself) during the 1992 Complex Systems Summer School of the Santa Fe Institute. Many, many thanks to James Beach, Harvey Chinn, Dan Davison, Reinhard Doelz, John Garavelli, Don Gilbert, Rob Harper, Dan Jacobson, David Kristofferson, Francis Ouellette, Renato Sabatini, and Tom Schneider, who have provided substantial ideas and material for this guide and/or advice on related issues. Harvey Chinn has served as my editor, and many improvements of organization were suggested by him. Additional material and suggestions were contributed by: David Bridge, Steve Clark, Jemery Day, Josh Hayes, Tom Jacobs, Andy Johnston, Jonathan Kamens, Jim McIntosh, Dean Pentcheff, Jon Radel, Ross Smith, Roy Smith, and Christophe Wolfhugel, and many, many readers of earlier versions of this guide. Thank you! There exists a (mostly anonymous) cast of thousands who have made very large, even enormous voluntary contributions to the resources mentioned in this guide, and who are largely responsible for the thing we call the Internet in its broadest sense. They must all be very proud of what they have helped to create. -*- Bibliography Anonymous (1993) "Total traffic through uunet for the last 2 weeks". Usenet news.lists, 8 July. Posted by firstname.lastname@example.org. Barr, D. and M. Horton (1993) "Rules for posting to Usenet". Usenet news.announce.newusers. FAQ archive filename posting-rules/part1. Brader, M. and J. Schwarz (1993) "Answers to Frequently Asked Questions about Usenet". Usenet news.announce.newusers. FAQ archive filename usenet-faq/part1. Crepin-Leblond, O.M.J. (1993) "FAQ: International E-mail accessibility". Usenet comp.mail.misc. FAQ archive: mail/country-codes. Granrose, J., M. Jones and T. Czarnik (1993a) "Anonymous FTP List - FAQ". Usenet comp.misc. FAQ archive: ftp-list/faq. Granrose, J., M. Jones and T. Czarnik (1993b) "Anonymous FTP List - Sites". Usenet comp.misc. FAQ archive: ftp-list/sites[1-3]. Fotis, N.C. (1993) "Computer Graphics Resource Listing". Usenet comp.graphics. FAQ archive filename graphics/resources-list/part[1-3]. Garavelli, J. (1992) "Announcements of the Protein Information Repository". Usenet bionet.molbio.proteins, December. Goldmann, N. (1992) "Online Information Hunting". Windcrest, Blue Ridge Summit, PA. Harris, R. (1993) "Computer Science Technical Report Archive Sites". Usenet comp.doc.techreports. FAQ archive: techreport-sites/list. Kahin, B. (1992) "Building Information Infrastructure: Issues in the Development of the National Research and Education Network". McGraw Hill, New York. 432 pages. Kamens, J.I. (1993a) "FAQ: How to find people's E-mail addresses". Usenet comp.mail.misc. FAQ archive filename finding-addresses. Kamens, J.I. (1993b) "How to find sources (READ THIS BEFORE POSTING)". Usenet comp.mail.misc. FAQ archive filename finding-sources. Kamens, J.I. (1993c) "How to become a USENET site". Usenet news.admin.misc. FAQ archive filename site-setup. Kamens, J.I. (1993d) "Introduction to the news.answers newsgroup". Usenet news.answers. FAQ archive filename news-answers/introduction. Kamens, J.I. (1993e) "Mail Archive Server (MAS) software list". Usenet comp.mail.misc. FAQ archive filename mas-software. Kaminski, P. (1993) "Public Dialup Internet Access List (PDIAL)". Usenet alt.internet.access.wanted FAQ archive filename pdial. Keen, G., G. Redgrave, J. Lawton, M. Cinkosky, S. Mishra, J. Fickett, and C. Burks (1992) "Access to molecular biology databases". Mathematical Comput. Modelling 16:93-101. Kehoe, B.P. (1992) "Zen and the Art of the Internet: A Beginner's Guide to the Internet", 2nd Edition (July). Prentice Hall, Englewood Cliffs, NJ. 112 pages. The 1st Edition, (February) is available in Postscript format via anonymous FTP from ftp.cs.widener.edu and many other Internet archives. Krol, E. (1992) "The Whole Internet: Catalog & User's Guide". O'Reilly & Associates, Inc., Sebastopol, CA. 376 pages. Lamb, D. (1993) "FAQ: College Email Addresses". Usenet soc.college. FAQ archive filename college-email/part[1-3]. Lane, E.S. and C.A. Summerhill (1992) "An Internet Primer for Information Professionals: A Basic Guide to Networking Technology". Meckler Corporation, Westport, CT. ~200 pages. In press. LaQuey, T.L. (1992?) editor, "The User's Directory of Computer Networks". Digital Press. ~1000 pages. LaQuey, T.L. and J.C. Ryer (1992) "The Internet Companion: A Beginner's Guide to Global Networking". Addison-Wesley Publishing Co., Reading, MA. 208 pages. Lawrence, D.C., G. Woods and G. Spafford (1993) "How to Create a New Usenet Newsgroup". Usenet news.announce.newusers. FAQ archive: creating-newsgroups/part1. Leech, J. (1993) "Space FAQ". Usenet sci.astro. FAQ archive space/*. Malamud, C. (1992) "Exploring the Internet: A Technical Travelogue". Prentice Hall, Englewood Cliffs, NJ. 376 pages. McIntosh, J. (1993a) "NetNews/Listserv Gateway Policy." Usenet bit.admin. FAQ archive: bit/policy. McIntosh, J. (1993b) "Mailing Lists Available in Usenet." Usenet bit.admin. FAQ archive: bit/gatelist. Prechelt, L. (1993) "FAQ in comp.ai.neural-nets". Usenet comp.ai.neural-nets. FAQ archive: neural-net-faq. Reid, B. (1993a) "Usenet Readership Report for January 1993". Usenet news.lists. Reid, B. (1993b) "Usenet Readership Summary Report for January 1993". Usenet news.lists. Schneider, T. (1993) "Biological Information Theory and Chowder Society". Usenet bionet.info-theory. FAQ archive: biology/info-theory. da Silva, S. and C. Von Rospach and G. Spafford (1993) "Publicly Accessible Mailing Lists". Usenet news.lists. FAQ archive: news.lists[1-4]. Smith, Una R. (1993) "A Biologist's Guide to Internet Resources." Usenet sci.bio. FAQ archive: biology/guide. Spafford, G. (1993) "USENET Software: History and Sources". Usenet news.admin.misc. FAQ archive filename usenet-software/part1. Spafford, G. and R. Atkinson (1992) "How to Get Information about Networks". Usenet news.admin.misc. FAQ archive: network-info/part1. Spafford, G. and M. Horton (1992) "Introduction to news.announce". Usenet news.announce.newusers. FAQ archive filename news-announce-intro/part1. Spafford, G. and A.J. Offutt VI (1992) "Hints on writing style for Usenet". Usenet news.announce.newusers. FAQ archive filename usenet-writing-style/part1. Spafford, G. and C. Salzenberg (1992) "What is Usenet?". Usenet news.announce.newusers. FAQ archive filename what-is-usenet/part1. Spafford, G. and C. Von Rospach (1992) "A Primer on How to Work With the Usenet Community". Usenet news.announce.newusers. FAQ archive filename usenet-primer/part1. Stern, I. (1993) "Sources of Meteorological Data FAQ". Usenet sci.geo.meteorology. FAQ archive filename weather-data. Templeton, B. (1991) "Emily Postnews Answers Your Questions on Netiquette". Usenet news.announce.newusers. FAQ archive filename emily-postnews/part1. Tennant, R., J. Ober and A.G. Lipow (1993) "Crossing the Internet Threshold: an Instructional Handbook", 1st Edition. Library Solution Press, San Carlos, CA. 134 pages. Thomas, E. (1993) "Revised LISTSERV System Reference Library". Listserv@BITNIC.educom.edu, release 1.7c. Retrievable from any listserver using the mail message "send listserv refcard". UofMN Gopher Team (1993) "Gopher Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)". Usenet comp.infosystems.gopher. FAQ archive: gopher-faq. Wohler, B. (1993) "NN Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) with Answers". Usenet news.software.nn. FAQ archive: nn-faq. Woodbury, G.W. (1993) "UNIX BBS Software FAQ with Answers". Usenet comp.bbs.misc. FAQ archive: unix-faq/bbs-software. Yanoff, S. (1993) "Updated Internet Services List". Usenet alt.internet.services. Available from rtfm.mit.edu FAQ archive as filename internet-services.