The National Science Foundation- (NSF) funded Action Science Explorer (ASE) allows users to simultaneously search through thousands of academic papers, using a visualization method that determines how papers are connected, for instance, by topic, date, authors, etc. The goal is to use these connections to identify emerging scientific trends and advances.
“We are creating an early warning system for scientific breakthroughs,” said Ben Shneiderman, a professor at the University of Maryland (UM) and founding director of the UM Human-Computer Interaction Lab.
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A New Visualization Method Makes Research More Organized and Efficient
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Scientists recently discovered nitrogen that falls from the atmosphere in acid rain can influence large tracts of sugar maples in North America.
The atmospheric nitrogen in acid rain can affect forest ecosystems by acidifying soils and causing nutrient imbalances.
Sugar maples in northeastern North America are especially vulnerable. Vast maple areas have been affected by this acidification process, which depletes soil calcium in already calcium-poor soils such as those of the Eastern United States.
In the calcium-rich soils of the upper Great Lakes, however, acid rain also wreaks havoc, ecologists have found. It slows leaf decomposition, leading to a pile-up of leaves and hindering new young maples from sprouting up.