TITLE: National Science Foundation Science & Technology Information System (STIS)

ACCESS: telnet://stis.nfs.gov
login: public

The National Science Foundation is the principle provider of this telnet site where NSF Publications and award abstracts may be obtained. Various ways to access the system are available,

including gophering to the site, but the most useful is to telnet directly there, type "public" at the login, register as a user, and use TOPIC, described as a "sophisticated text retrieval software program" developed by the NSF and various contractors. It allows users to search using boolean operators. Many individuals have tried to use this telnet site unsuccessfully because it has unique idiosyncrasies. Without using any user documentation it can be a lesson in futility. However, if the document, nsf9410, is ftp'd from the same address, a wonderful help aid is in hand. This document will be requisite for almost everyone utilizing this site to its fullest extent. To use TOPIC without documentation is difficult even though there are several help screens. The STIS USERS' GUIDE, nsf9410, is excellent and truly written from a user's point of view. It is exceptionally good at explaining the problems that may be encountered, and with the document is a tutorial which takes about 20 minutes to go through. Once through it, it becomes clear that this is a great site; one that will predominately be used by academic faculty, administrators, graduate students, and anyone else who would like to obtain funding from the National Science Foundation. Since one of the document types is "Program Guidelines", and since this site is updated weekly, many individuals will want to find out the procedures for writing proposals for grants, etc. and this is the site to use. Terminal emulation must be either VT100 or VT102. A nice feature of this site is that it does make information available to people with only e-mail access to the Internet. For those, e-mail a message to stisserv@nsf.gov, leave the subject line blank, and in the text of the message type "get nsf9410". It will be quite useful.

Laura Windsor Reference Librarian Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University windsorl@bart.db.erau.edu February 20, 1994


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