Page 3.14

Hi there. If this is your first visit to the newly-designed ScienceBlogs homepage, welcome. And if you’re a return visitor, welcome back.

I want to take a moment to walk you through the new features and functionalities on the page, but first, a reminder.

If you’re feeling disoriented by the new design, and are aflame with nostalgia for ScienceBlogs Classic®, I urge you to check out the ‘Last 24 Hours’ channel, in the upper left-hand corner of the page. Clicking ‘Last 24 Hours’ will take you to an “alternate homepage” that works exactly as the ‘old’ ScienceBlogs did: it’s an uncluttered space displaying titles and excerpts from the latest posts on all the blogs, updated as they appear.

You can bookmark it and use it as your default gateway to ScienceBlogs, although I recommend sacrificing continuity occasionally and exploring the new homepage, because it includes beaucoup new features that you will soon wonder how you lived without:

Content-specific channels

As you probably know, the ScienceBlogs network is growing like a magical beanstalk. That’s wonderful, but it means that if we’d stuck with the old homepage design, new posts would have gotten crowded off the latest-posts list in the blink of an eye. Our main innovation to make ScienceBlogs more user-friendly has been the creation of category channels. Now, every single post on the ScienceBlogs network is sorted into one of ten categories. View the latest posts in every category, on the ‘Last 24 Hours’ channel, or indulge an interest in, say, the latest news in neuroscience, or the state of science policy, by filtering out everything else. Clicking on a category will take you to an alternate homepage showing the latest posts in this category, in chronological order.

Here’s a guide to what the category shorthands mean:

  • Academia: Science education, Lab life, Career paths
  • Biology: Zoology, Botany, Cell biology, Evolutionary biology, Genetics
  • Brain & Behavior: Neuroscience, Psychobiology, Psychology, Psychiatry
  • Chatter: Books and films, Personal blogging, Levity
  • Culture Wars: Creationism, Quackery, Science & religion
  • Medicine: Diseases, Research, Pharmacology, Public health, Life as a physician
  • Philosophy of Science: History of science, Scientific ethics, Social studies of science
  • Physical Science: Math, Physics, Astronomy, Chemistry
  • Planet Earth: Ecology, Oceanography, Geology, Paleontology, Climate science
  • Policy & Politics: Science in the Civic Arena

Read what you’re interested in, and skip what you aren’t. Devour everything you can about the physical sciences, before brushing up on policy. Dip into ‘Last 24 Hours’ for something unexpected. It’s our experiment in organizing information, and making the blogosphere just a little more navigable. Let us know what you think.

The Buzz

What stories have the science blogosphere’s attention right now? Several times a week, ScienceBlogs’ editors choose a timely topic that the bloggers are abuzz over. We select one “Must-Read Entry”–the first or most comprehensive post on that topic–and subsequent posts about the same issue populate into the “Latest Related Entries” window below.

Top Five

See the Top Five most-searched-for terms on the network, and the top five most-emailed and most-active (having the largest number of comments) posts systemwide.

Wordburst

Powered by Postgenomic, the Wordburst module picks out five terms that are appearing with statistically-improbable frequency in recent posts. Glance at the list for a quick impression of what’s big on ScienceBlogs right now.

Page 3.14

With apologies to the New York Post’s iconic gossip column Page Six, Page 3.14 is your guide to what’s hot on ScienceBlogs. Watch this space for profiles of our bloggers, thoughts from the ScienceBlogs editorial desk, and system announcements.

The Network Banner

At the very top of your browser window, the network banner (a feature we share with sister site, seedmagazine.com, the network banner calls out two not-to-be-missed ScienceBlogs posts each day.

Ask A ScienceBlogger

The weekly question-and-answer series now has its very own space on the homepage.

…And that’s it for now. Have fun, play with the new features, and enjoy ScienceBlogs as much as we enjoy bringing it to you.

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