New paper on age-model uncertainty in late Quaternary pollen cores is out!

A paper by Jessica Blois, Jack Williams, Eric Grimm, Steve Jackson, and Russ Graham has just been published in Quaternary Science Reviews. This paper uses the Neotoma database to assess the amount of temporal uncertainty in late Quaternary pollen cores from eastern North America. The authors then identify particularly well-dated and well-sampled sites ('benchmark' sites), and use them to update the age-models of nearby, non-benchmark sites. Read the paper here (subscription required) or e-mail Jessica Blois for a reprint.

Posted by Jessica Blois on 07/12

Taxonomic Name Resolution and spellchecking for plant names

The Taxonomic Name Resolution Service (TNRS) is a new web application for checking spelling errors and currently accepted taxonomic plant names. It uses a fuzzy matching algorithm to find misspelled names. Lists of up to 5000 names can be submitted at a time by pasting the names into an online form. The website is here: Taxonomic Name Resolution Service

Read a recent article about TNRS in Nature.

Posted by Blake Ketchum on 06/20

Neotoma database highlighted in Trends in Ecology and Evolution

A recent paper by Fraser J. G. Mitchell entitled Exploring Vegetation in the Fourth Dimension (TREE, vol. 26, issue 1, January 2011) discusses pollen databases and the incorporation of the Global Pollen Database into Neotoma.
Read the article here:
Exploring Vegetation in the Fourth Dimension

Posted by Blake Ketchum on 06/02

UK Study on Scientific Openness Announced

The Royal Society of the United Kingdom to conduct study on openness in science. The study, which is particularly focused on data sharing, is seeking input from academia, business, and industry in a "call for evidence." See http://royalsociety.org/news/Royal-Society-launches-study-on-openness-in-science/ for details.

Posted by Blake Ketchum on 05/25

Eos Meeting Report Published!

Neotoma held a 4-day conference in September at UW-Madison to launch the next development phase of Neotoma. 54 people from 10 different countries met to form working groups, discuss goals and priorities, learn about the progress of the database and website, and provide feedback about near and long-term database and website goals. See the accompanying Meeting Report in Eos (8 February 2011, Vol 92, No. 6, Page 48) for additional details.

Posted by Blake Ketchum on 02/10

Tilia Training Workshops in UK and France, May 2011

9-11 May 2011, Liverpool, England 16-18 May, Aix-en-Provence, France The new all-Windows version of Tilia was released in January 2011. This version includes the spreadsheet and graphics in a single program and includes many new enhancements, such as a component for generating and viewing age models. The program can also carry out stratigraphically constrained (and unconstrained) cluster analysis. The program is also designed to be compatible with the Neotoma Paleoecology Database, and will be used by Neotoma data stewards for data entry. It has forms for metadata, including site data, core data, geochronologic data, age models, contacts, and publications. The Neotoma Paleoecology Database is a multiproxy paleodatabase for the Quaternary and Pliocene. Constituent databases include the European Pollen Database and the North American Pollen Database. What will be covered: The Tilia training sessions will cover all aspects of the Tilia program, including data entry, metadata entry, age-model construction, cluster analysis, and construction and editing of pollen diagrams. The workshop will also provide an introduction to the Neotoma Paleoecology Database—how to use the website tools as well as make simple queries in Access to the full database. What to bring: Participants should bring a laptop computer and have administrative rights to install new software. The newest version of Tilia will be distributed to those who have not yet obtained it. Having Access installed is recommended, but not required. Time will be allotted for participants to work with their own data, which they should bring. Costs: There will be no registration fee. However, participants are responsible for their own travel, lodging, and meals. Recommendations for lodging will be made in a future announcement. Please reply (Richard.Bradshaw@liv.ac.uk) if you think you might come and indicate whether you choose Liverpool or Aix. We need a rough idea of numbers for planning. You will have to pay for travel and accommodation but we hope to subsidise some of the on-site costs. There are several cheap flights to Liverpool or Manchester airports and we can organize budget accommodation. Practical details and registration forms will be sent later. Please pass this on to interested colleagues.

Posted by Blake Ketchum on 01/23

Strides towards browser compatability

Currently, we are confident that the first level of navigation on Neotoma Home, Work Groups, and News is functional in most all current browsers including Internet Explorer, Safari, Opera, and Firefox. If you are having trouble on one of these pages with a relatively current browser install, please let me know. If you are using an ancient browser, upgrades are free and usually very easy to install from the browser's homepage.

Posted by Blake Ketchum on 01/23

Neotoma News

Neotoma Database and Community offers this dynamic News Site. You'll find all kinds of information about the exciting research that our collaborators undertake. If you are interested in sharing some news, just contact your Work Group Leaders or a Neotoma Principal Investigator or the site administrator (ketchum@psu.edu). Once more news is added, this filler news article will disappear into the archives. We hope to hear from you soon!

Posted by Blake Ketchum on 01/23

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