Open Questions: Best Science Sites
See also: Science news stories
- This is the leading publication on physical sciences for a general
audience. The entire contents of all issues since July 2000 is now
online. The feature articles, focus stories on
recent research findings, and book reviews are especially good.
Nature Science Journals
- This is the home page of the Nature Publishing Group, publishers
of Nature magazine and numerous other technical journals.
Although subscriptions are required to access most of the journal
material, there's a huge amount of free information and resources
here also, especially the
Nature Science Update, the
Nature Physics Portal, the
Nature Cancer Update, and the
Nature Genome Gateway.
feature articles include elementary surveys of a number of
- Tables of contents and
selected articles from issues back to 1999 are available.
(All articles back to 1993 are available in the
Scientific American Digital section -- for a fee.)
There is a good site search facility. The
Ask the Expert
feature is especially valuable for looking at individual topics by
means of specific questions. The
In Depth section each month provides 2 to 4 online articles
that aren't included in the print edition.
- Bi-monthly magazine of the Sigma Xi science honorary society.
archives are organized by subject area and contain full text of
selected articles. There are abstracts for other articles, and most
entries also include additional references and links. Good book
reviews and shorter articles also.
Science News Magazine
- Contains tables of contents for issues back to 1996, full text
of selected articles online, site search capability.
- Weekly magagine of science and technology news.
Main site features include
Site of the Day (description of one external site selected daily),
Hot Topics (brief articles on popular subjects).
Archives of contents of past issues are available to subscribers
to the magazine.
- Contains selected archived feature articles back to 1992.
There is an archive of
news articles organized by field. The
Web Picks provide selected external links sorted by topic,
and many articles have external links also.
Image Gallery has a few interesting images.
- Emphasis on technology (of course) in various areas including
computer technology, biotech, nanotechnology. Good articles,
plus news and discussion forums. Selected articles available free
ScienceWorld: Wolfram Research's World of Science
- Extensive collection of encyclopedia-style reference
information on astronomy, chemistry, mathematics, physics,
and scientific biography. The portion of this site devoted to
is outstanding and is currently the most complete. The work was
Eric Weisstein -- as "Eric's Treasure Trove of Science" --
and is now supported by
- Exceptional site - daily news (from press
releases), links, discussion groups, books, search capability.
PSIgate: Physical Sciences Information Gateway
- Another exceptionally good site. "PSIgate provides free access
to high quality Internet resources for students, researchers
and practitioners in the physical sciences, specifically in:
astronomy, chemistry, earth sciences, materials science, physics,
and general science." There is a
for easy access, and a detailed
There is a monthly online science magazine called
Some of the many other features:
links to articles on "hot topics",
links to physics lecture notes,
links to physics tutorials.
There is a vast database of resource links, in such areas as
- Offers summaries of recent papers and articles on important
topics online and by email three times per week.
The site also has a good collection of
articles and "symposia" on special topics.
BBC Science & Nature
- Variety of resources at an educational/introductory level
focusing on popular science topics such as space, genetics, robots,
dinosaurs. The BBC also has a very good
science/nature news section.
Best features: no advertising, no "registration".
The Lab - Australian Broadcasting Corporation's Gateway to Science
- Unlike the dreck-filled U. S. network also known as ABC, this
one has quality content. The daily
science news section
is as good as the BBC's. There are also
Ask an Expert section, and an
exploration section that organizes stories by topic.
There are some
external links. Most content is available through browsable and searchable
archives or the
- NASA operates dozens of quality sites on a variety of topics
in the areas of Earth science, space science, biological sciences,
aeronautics and astronautics, technology, and more. Most of them
are accessible, one way or another, from here.
- Space.com provides
and general information about space
and astronomy, of course, but it also has good general science
resources. The weekly feature called
Science Tuesday offers expository articles on many topics.
(The same page is also the start of a directory of archived
articles arranged by topic.)
Mystery Monday is a somewhat similar feature.
Wikibooks Science Bookshelf
- A very ambitious project to develop online textbooks for
the sciences. Most individual books are still in a preliminary
form, but some contain very useful information.
just one of a number of projects of
Wikimedia, of which the best known is the
- A stimulating, eclectic mix of original stories and articles,
science news, links to important general resources, book reviews,
commentary, opinion, discussion forums, and reader feedback.
Hypography Sci-Tech: Gateway to Science and Technology
- A "hypography" is a combination of "hyperlink" and "bibliography" -
links to electronic documents. Major feature is collections of links
on many science topics, with overview of each topic and brief reviews
of linked sites. The main site also includes news articles, book
reviews, discussion forums.
- An annual print and Web-based publication of the
Science Communication Program of the University of California,
Santa Cruz. Each issue contains about ten high-quality
essays of "science journalism" on a wide range of topics.
- The site is organized around scientific investigation of life
and other complex systems. Specific areas are brain and behavior,
complex systems, and biology. Also deals with science education and
the relationship of science and culture.
- Contains some interesting
many by well-known scientists. The selective list of
external links is good too.
There is a page of
current news stories.
Science for the Millennium
- Excellent site created by the
National Center for Supercomputer Applications (NCSA).
Contains a variety of multimedia exhibits. Main areas are
Whispers from the Cosmos (radio astronomy),
Spacetime Wrinkles (relativity),
Cosmos in a Computer (cosmology),
The Metacomputer (distributed computing), and
Introducing Virtual Environments (virtual reality).
- Althouth this service has been discontinued due to lack of
funding, much of the original content remains available.
The main feature was the answering of questions about science
submitted by readers. Questions, articles, and other features are
archived by subject area.
There's a good news story section called
Open Directory Project: Science
- This is the top-level index of science directories. Also available
Includes external links to similar
(The version of the latter at
Google presents results in "page rank" order.)
Basically the same lists are available at
(But the advertising on these last two is a negative.)
- Yahoo's top level index of science directories.
Includes external links to similar
directories. Most entries are annotated. Entries are sorted
alphabetically. Some categories have a separate list of "most
WWW Virtual Library: Science
- The Virtual Library is the
oldest index/directory of the Web. Each topic area is maintained
by a different volunteer (so the quality and coverage is variable).
See also the branch devoted to
Science Site of the Day
- One site is selected for review each day (since July 2002).
All fields of science are covered, and selected sites range through
all educational levels. This is a quick way to locate some of the
best science sites on the Web.
- Possibly the best search engine available for Web searches on
scientific topics. It's fast and thorough, searching many databases not
covered by most other search engines, such as eprint ArXivs and
An "advanced" search capability allows flexible control over
search criteria and document locations. Scirus is oriented
towards professional research needs rather than a general
- A site directory like Yahoo. Entries usually include
descriptive annotations. Site lists are not sorted.
- Site directory based on the
Open Directory Project,
with the addition of ability for anyone to rate listed sites.
- Very extensive, categorized collection of links, maintained by
Josef Eschgfäller and others. In addition to mathematics,
there are large sections on
- The site has excellent selected links to reference materials
in many academic areas, including all major scientific fields.
Discover Magazine Web Picks
- Annotated lists of selected sites in the following categories:
Mind & Brain,
Astronomy & Physics,
Biology & Medicine, and
Martindale's The Reference Desk
- A general Web index with better than average science coverage
and special emphasis on reference materials, such as subject
dictionaries and listings of online course materials.
100 Top Science Sites
- Selected by 100.com.
Some selections are very good.
The Exploratorium's Ten Cool Sites
- Ten selected sites each month. Previous selections in many categories
can be viewed.
Frank Potter's Science Gems
- Thosands of categorized and annotated links to science
educational resources, through
high school level.
Scientific American Sci/Tech Web Awards 2003
- There are 50 selected sites in 10 categories. Selections were
announced in May 2003. There were similar awards in
New Scientist Web Links & Site of the Day
- Extended descriptions of one site selected daily and categorized
lists of past selections.
- A selective collection of links arranged by subject area,
with brief annotations.
Suite 101: Science Surfing
- Provides occasional articles on sites in a given topical area,
as well as general list of links. (This site has gone downhill
since originally reviewed.)
Netsurfer Science Home Page
- Weekly newsletter available on the Web and by email with
extensively annotated listings of new Web sites
from all branches of science and engineering
Dr. Matrix' Web World of Science
- Diverse site that with sections on astronomy, space technology,
mathematics, physics and cosmology, biology, anthropology, chemistry,
technology, and general science. There are links for each topic,
awards to selected sites in many categories.
Academic Info: Science Gateway
- Site is designed as a directory for academic resources at the
college/university level. Coverage of scientific fields is broad but
somewhat sparse in places. Good annotation of links provided.
SciNet Science Search
- Hierarchical searchable directory of science with many categories.
Entries have brief annotations. Has a list of "50 Most Helpful
- Combined directory and search engine for science-related Web
pages. Has a few other features such as reference material and
The Scout Report for Science and Engineering
- Biweekly online and emailed newsletter listing new sites in
science and engineering.
- Provides Web searches for many topics, not only in mathematics,
but also in physics, biology, computers, and technology. Search
results are categorized, ranked, and annotated.
Virtual Reference Desk AskA+ Locator
- Virtual Reference Desk is a
U. S. Government-sponsored project to facilitate human-mediated,
Internet-based information services for K-12 education. Their
locator is the best available directory of such sites. It provides
not just a site link, but a detailed description of the service,
policies, and audience level.
Yahoo Science: Ask an Expert
- Annotated links to sites that provide ask an expert services
in various scientific fields.
Galaxy: Expert Links
- Categorized site directory. Entries usually include
Pitsco's Ask an Expert: Science/Technology
- Directory of sites that handle questions in many scientific
fields. (But it isn't organized by topic.)
CIESE Educational Links: Ask An Expert: Science and Math
- Directory of Ask-A-Scientist/Math-Expert sites, provided by
Stevens Institute of Technology Center for Improved Engineering and
The Science Club: Links to Ask A Scientist Sites
- Hosted by The Science
Club, an non-profit organization for elementary school science
Q & A sites
Scientific American: Ask the Experts
- Handles questions in nine areas. Questions are handled on the
site, with archives of past questions and answers.
Australian Broadcasting Corporation: Ask an Expert
- A relatively new feature, and so smaller than other expert sites,
this one addresses a new topic each month. Answers are provided
by Australian scientists.
- Claims to be the oldest and largest free Q & A service on
the Internet. Most scientific categories are covered, including a few
pseudo-sciences. Questions are answered on the site.
Newton/ANL Home Page
- This site is the "Newton BBS", hosted by the Argonne National
Laboratory, primarily for K-12 education. Has an extensive
Ask-A-Scientist feature covering most scientific areas. Archive
of questions and answers goes back to 1991.
- Although not the only feature, the site's main attraction
is the ability to submit questions on science by email or phone
(if you wish to call the UK). Answers are archived by category.
(The site is no longer active, but older questions and answers
are still available.)
- Although primarily aimed at students in grades K-12, this site
provides a Q & A service with a very large archive of entries that
deal with questions from elementary through advanced levels. There
is a search engine for the archives but no subject-oriented index.
There is also a good directory of external science links in the
including links to other Q & A sites.
The following sites were formerly listed somewhere above. Although they
are still in existence, their quality or usefulness has declined.
They may be worth investigating anyhow. Let us know if they seem to
have shown any improvement -- otherwise let them know that they
need to improve their content.
About - Science
- About.com is a large family
of subject-oriented Web sites each hosted by a knowledgable "guide".
The portion of this network covering science includes most of the
traditional areas (and a few less respectable ones as well, such as
"astrology"). Each topic area contains original articles, discussion
forums, and external links, as well as anything else provided by
Suite101.com: Science and Mathematics
- Suite101.com is a
family of subject-oriented Web sites (like About.com).
Each area contains original articles, external links, and discussion
forums. Other pertiment topics related to medicine, psychology, and
technology may be found categorized under various other headings at
Copyright © 2002-04 by Charles Daney, All Rights Reserved