ScienceSeeker Reloaded: Explore The Science Blogosphere
There are a lot of science blogs out there. And by a lot, I mean a helluva of a lot. Some science blogs focus on specific fields of science from climate science to regenerative biology, some cover the “wow” science beat, others opt to discuss academic and student lives, while still more concentrate on science education, policy, communication and publishing. So, you can imagine that looking for something specific from the science blogosphere is no simple task. With the introduction of the redesigned ScienceSeeker however, the task is suddenly much easier.
ScienceSeeker is, in a way, the science blogosphere’s directory. But it’s much more than just a comprehensive list of science blogs. ScienceSeeker also collects science blog posts, as they are published, and compiles them in its database. This means that when you visit ScienceSeeker, you can search for blog posts along specific themes. For instance, a quick search for “Sandy” renders all blog posts from the science blogosphere that deal with Hurricane Sandy. Search for “SfN” and lo and behold you’ll get 240 results (at time of writing). Currently, ScienceSeeker has a database of over 150,000 articles, with the potential to hold much more.
So, is ScienceSeeker the Google of the science blogosphere? Well, not entirely. Contrarily to Google (or Bing), ScienceSeeker is moderated and reviewed by human editors. Every science blog in ScienceSeeker’s directory has been carefully reviewed. And if you submit your own science blog to ScienceSeeker, it too will be reviewed by an editor who will check whether your blog reports accurate science. This process is important because it keeps out pseudoscience and anti-science agenda-driven blogs and also promotes good and accurate science. "Most of the sources on ScienceSeeker are blogs written by the scientists and graduate students actively involved in the research they discuss," says Dave Munger, ScienceSeeker’s Managing Editor.
In addition to the website’s search function, you can also browse through blog posts of special interest to you by using filters. Those filters include topics such as “Anthropology,” “Biology,” “Climate Science,” “Ethics” and “Science Communication” amongst many more. In addition, there is a “Citations” filter which indicates blog posts that focus on peer-reviewed research papers. Indeed, ScienceSeeker is now essentially encompassing Researchblogging, a website also spearheaded by Dave Munger, that aggregates blog posts which report and discuss peer-reviewed research papers.
If you’re more inclined to read really good science blog posts which span across an array of topics, then you can follow the Editors’ Picks, which are featured prominently on the website’s homepage. For a blogger, to be nominated amongst the Editors’ Picks is a great honour indeed.
The new incarnation of ScienceSeeker website has been made possible thanks to a $35,000 grant by the National Association of Science Writers (NASW). ScienceSeeker was initially started more than two years ago by Bora Zivkovic, now Blogs Editor of Scientific American and Anton Zuiker, both of whom lead the ScienceOnline conferences.
I'll keep updating this blog post with links from around the blogosphere to other relevant articles/blog posts related to ScienceSeeker (and yes I'll use ScienceSeeker's search function to help me out):
- Dave Munger, ScienceSeeker Blog: ScienceSeeker launches massive upgrade powered by NASW grant
- Grant Jacobs, Code For Life: Seeking science reading?