digital universe

Did some link hopping, first from a New York Times article about Wikipedia to Earth Portal: The Encyclodpedia of the Earth (which appears to be pending—I couldn’t figure out how to actually access anything) to, finally, Digital Universe.

Digital Universe is the beginning of the Encyclopedia Galactica, that compendium of everything envisioned by Isaac Asimov. DU is a portal to portals: “It is an ever-growing array of commercial-free portals mapping the highest-quality Internet destinations, as recommended by experts recognized in their fields. These experts review public contributions, create context and attest to the reliability, integrity, and accuracy of the portals.”

It is an inteface that organizes existing websites into topic areas. For example, if you want to look up some medical information, you’d select the “Human” portal, then “Health,” and look at the resources available on the right side of the screen, which are organized further into topics such as “Essentials,” In-Depth,” etc. In some cases, the site selected loads into the main screen, in other cases it lauches in a new tab or window. (I imagine what happens has to do with copyright agreements.)

DU’s founders write: “The vision of the Digital Universe is to organize the sum total of human knowledge and make it available to everyone.” Hey, shoot for the stars, why not?

Just go poke around; it really is pretty amazing. Sparse or empty in certain areas (such as women’s health), loaded with information in others (Tree of Life).

Posted by .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) on 06/17/06 at 06:15 PM
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