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Spring 2001 Vol. 1 No. 1

Table of Contents

Editor's Picks: What's new and notable on the National Academies' Web site

Engineer Girls, Check This Out

Girls across the United States and Canada helped the National Academy of Engineering (NAE) create Engineer Girl, a Web site that highlights engineering opportunities for women and girls, in areas such as space, medicine, environment, and communications. Students who visit the site can get homework help, read profiles of real women engineers, and even ask them questions. "Engineer Girl" is part of the NAE's Celebration of Women in Engineering project, which tries to bring national attention to the opportunities that engineering presents to people at any age, but particularly to women and girls. The Celebration is the first of several projects by NAE focusing on gender and diversity in the engineering work force and is supported with grants from the AT&T Foundation, Southern Company, and Texas Utilities.

Web Extra! Web Extra! Read All About It!

The National Academies now offer enhanced Web treatments of some of the institution's reports on high-profile, critical issues. These "Web Extra" sites present short, accessible report summaries, a wide array of online resources, and other information to provide a better understanding of complex issues. Recent features look at the potential of new imaging and molecular biological technologies for detecting and diagnosing breast cancer at an early stage; the controversy surrounding products that claim to reduce some of the risks of smoking while still allowing the use of tobacco or nicotine; and whether the nation's schoolchildren are getting the preparation in mathematics they need to live and work in a world that increasingly is driven by technology, all subjects of new Academies reports. Readers who peruse the Web Extra archive can listen to discussions with the authors, take online quizzes, and access in-depth information.

Students Meet Internet 'Fathers'

Listen to Charles Stark Draper Prize winners Vinton Cerf, Robert Kahn, Leonard Kleinrock, and Lawrence Roberts -- honored for their individual efforts in developing the Internet -- in a lively discussion with middle and high school students, an event sponsored by the National Academy of Engineering. The Draper laureates talk on topics ranging from the early days of discovery to current issues surrounding copyright law, security, and the stability of the Internet. Cerf and Kahn are co-inventors of the two protocols that enable computers around the world to communicate with one another. Kleinrock created the basic principles of packet switching -- the technology that routes a message from computer to computer until it reaches its final destination, and directed the transmission of the first message ever to pass over the Internet. Roberts led the team that designed and developed the world's first major computer network to implement packet switching.

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Copyright 2001 by the National Academy of Sciences