Association of College & Research Libraries

Internet Reviews

Sara Amato is systems librarian at Willamette University, Salem, Oregon; e-mail:

National Indian Policy Center. Access:gopher:// Academic Departments/Na- tional Indian Policy Center.

Producer:National Indian Policy and Research Insti- tute. Contact: Bambi Kraus at or

Many share the concern that the information super- highway will bypass Native Americans and other minor- ity groups. Internet access, effective November 1993, to the National Indi- an Policy Center (NIPC) at the George Wash- ington University gopher is an “on-ramp” in the right direction.

The NIPC has been serving as an information clearinghouse on Native American policy issues since 1990. It was established and funded by passage of Public Law 101-301 as a research center after a year of consultation with American Indian and Alaskan Native tribes and individuals. The NIPC is committed to gathering, analyzing, and disseminating information on substantive Indian policy issues affecting Indian country. Seven task groups have been formed to look at education, tribal governance, natural resource management, health, cultural rights and resources, law, and economic development.

The NIPC operates under the direction of a planning committee composed of tribal leaders and representatives of major Indian organizations. NIPC acting director, Ron Trosper (Salish and Kootenai) founded the Native American Forestry Program at Northern Arizona University. Bambi Kraus (Tlingit) is assistant director.

Since its inception, the NIPC has issued over 20 reports on topics ranging from education to protection of sacred sites on public lands. The June 1993 report on the economic impact of Indian gaming has been cited by researchers, the media, and tribes.

All NIPC research reports can be viewed on the NIPC gopher hole, organized according to NIPC task groups. The gopher also includes an annotated bibliography of the reports. Copies of this bibliography can be requested at no cost by fax, snail mail, or e-mail. An or- der form is attached to the bibliography to request free copies of reports.

The NIPC gopher hole also contains 1990 census data, minutes of task force meetings, press releases, and other data. NIPC is planning to develop a database of journal and newspaper arti- cles and to include special- ized state and tribal census data in the gopher.

You can also access the NIPC via InterTribal Network (ITN) in Colorado: gopher:// News/ National Indian Policy Center. ITN is a growing gopher hole that also includes book reviews and information on grants, legislation, and medical topics.—MaryJane McDermott Cedar Face, Southern Oregon State College

HungerWeb. Access:http://www.hunger.brown. edu/oxfam. HungerWeb is one of a small number of issue-focused web resources whose main purpose is to raise the consciousness of those who browse the site. World hunger is the issue, and exhortation is a principal tool. “There are many moral responsibilities and economic concerns that make ending hunger an unavoidable imperative: the human and social consequences of hunger are unbearable, and the economic cost of allowing hunger to persist is genocidal, if not suicidal . . . We can not avert our eyes nor deny our responsibilities—responsibilities in the name of humanity, and responsibilities in our best interest” (from “The Facts About Hunger” on the main page).

The site is praiseworthy for trying to gather relevant documents and links to inform and galvanize its audience to response, but there is some question as to who the intended audience is, and what its members should do once consciousness is raised. The level of discourse in the introductory material seems appropriate for high school students or perhaps college freshman, and at present the links are not data- rich enough to be useful to more sophisticated browsers.

WWW interfaces (Mosaic, lynx, etc.) encour- age a bulletized mode of communication that is simplified and often superficial; when the sentence or paragraph contains a link, to more detailed material, the browser has the oppor- tunity to explore further. HungerWeb’s linked texts examine national security, the environ- ment, war, the Bible, population, and poverty in the U.S. as facets of hunger, and each of these topics presents an argument with sup- porting data. At their best they provide useful summaries of hunger issues, but sometimes the text seems naive—the intentions are surely the best, but the facts are questionable:

“Hungry people will do almost anything to feed themselves, including taking up arms in Third World conflicts. It is these conflicts which are most likely to lead to full-scale nuclear war according to experts including the Center for Defense Information” (from the “Hunger and National Security” text).

Links to “Extensive Hunger Resources" in- clude a wide range of governmental and non- governmental gophers and web sites, many of which have excellent and highly relevant in- formation, though it is often deeply buried.

The browser needs guidance in these resources, and the WWW medium offers the opportunity to provide explanatory context for them by means of links to specific parts of documents, but little along these lines has yet been done by the maintainers of HungerWeb. Guidance through the jungles of literature about hunger (in the fonn of annotated bibliographies and commentary on issues like the politics of charity) would be a valuable addition as the site grows.

In the Mosaic version of HungerWeb the images take up a great deal of space and transmission time, but few are really informative.

They create an ambience, but their message is more often generalized guilt (a starving child) or ambiguous allusion (Picasso’s Guernica, the Statue of Liberty) than useful data or trenchant summary.—Hugh A. Blackmer, Washington and Lee University

Springer Journals Preview Service (SPJV).

Access:gopher:// 1/ TOC; gopher; 12. Springer Journals Preview Service (SPJV).

The separate files are also available via mailserver: SVJPS@VAX.NTP.SPRINGER.DE or by subscription to an e-mail list. Comments about the service can be sent via e-mail to SPRINGER@VAX.NTP.SPRINGER.DE

This part of SPJV is a gopher-based table of contents service for selected Springer-Verlag titles in life sciences and radiology. The gopher menu is used to list tables of contents to enable users to select a citation for which they may want an abstract. Abstracts (called BiblioAbstracts by Springer-Verlag) are then ordered via e-mail (via a subscription billed to your credit card). For complete information on ordering abstracts, read the README file at the top of the menu. Use of the table of contents (TOC) service is free. TOCs are available approximately 10 days before the print issue is mailed to subscribers.

The menu is organized by titles of journals. The submenu for each title is further subdivided by year and that menu is divided by individual issues. When you select an issue, a file is displayed listing the TOC for that issue. Below is a sample citation:

AU Howes-B-L. Teal-J-M.

TI Oxygen loss from Spaitina alterniflora and its relationship to salt marsh oxygen balance.

SO Oecologia. 1994 97(4) P 431.

AB 40970431.442

The information is tagged according to BRS Medline format conventions.

In its present form, SPJV contains approximately 90 titles. The number of years available varies widely. This service is not intended to be an index since the user must know which title, volume, and issue he or she wants to examine. Perhaps the best uses of this service include SDI (selective dissemination of information), interlibrary loan, and collection development. Libraries with limited budgets could then request separate articles for their users without having to subscribe to a particular journal.

While still experimental, this service is a good example of what serials publishers can do when they have access to the Internet. Many other publishers are beginning to offer similar services, which could be a major tool in controlling serials costs. SPJV is of particular value to researchers in the life sciences and radiology.— Wilfred Drew, SUNY College of Agriculture and Technology

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