Saturday, September 13, 2008

Magic Keys To The Biomedical Internet


The Internet has evolved to become the world’s greatest source of information acquisition and exchange. It is indeed the information super-highway where any information concerning anything is a mouse-click away from the info-finder. It is therefore the fastest, easiest, most convenient and cheapest means of information acquisition.

Generally, books on the Internet are hard to come by in this part of the world. Early users depended on materials written by foreign authors and their contacts overseas to learn the step-by-step guide on how the Internet operates. I was fortunate to lay my hands on the guide written by Stephen Slaps of blessed memory to get going when I was bitten by the Internet bug some years ago.

In my personal relationship with medical professionals, medical laboratory scientists, Nurses, and other professionals in the health sector, I have observed the abysmally low habitual usage of the Internet. Most do it on emergency basis whenever they are mandated so to do by superior officers or supervisors as the case may be. Others who are interested find it very difficult to cope with their level of ignorance of the workings of the Internet due to scarcity of materials to serve as a guide.
This work is an attempt to bridge the gap of Internet education for those who are newbies (internet newcomers) to serve as a complete personal development kit to Internet skills acquisition and a ready gateway to the Biomedical Internet for medical doctors, medical laboratory scientists, Nurses and other health professionals.

Inside this guide are tools for experienced Internet users who want to learn more about the hidden secrets of biomedical Internet elites who are top players in their various fields of human endeavors.
This guide has an intentional motivational colouration to make you take the giant step to the life-changing world of the Internet. You will have access to top-secret websites destined to positively transform your professional practice and status permanently. I know you cannot afford to ignore the Internet. You will certainly need it to move to the next level in your life and career.
Simple Steps To Biomedical Internet shows you how to easily get into how the Internet works and getting hard- to -find information and resources guaranteed to empower you. You will save enough time hitherto spent o`n aimless search for information and the subsequent high cost incurred in the process significantly reduced.
I hope you’ll enjoy the time invested in this guide.

Bon Chance
Benard Solomon

The inspiration for this book came from the Author of life himself and my ever-faithful Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ unto whom I ascribe all glory and honour.
At the home front, I have enjoyed the peace and amazing co-operation of my darling wife Olakemi Abike and wonderful daughter Ruth AnuOluwa.
My special thanks goes to the following people who has contributed in no small measure to the success of this work:
Dr M.F. Useh, Senior Lecturer, Department of Microbiology and Parasitology, College of Medical Sciences, University of Calabar, Dr. Anthony Emeribe, Associate Professor, Haematology Department, College of Medical Sciences, University of Calabar and Dr Akande A.A., H.O.D., Department of Chemical Pathology, University of Ilorin Teaching Hospital for finding time out of their very tight schedule to edit and proof-read the draft copy of this work, Brother Biodun Samuel for his graphics design work on the cover page and finally Corper IfeOluwa Adedokun for his great computer skills which added pictorial presentations to the book.
May God bless you all.


a) Selecting a provider
b) Selecting a portal
c) Using e –mail
d) Using the World Wide Web
e) Online resources
f) Advanced online resources
g) Telnet
h) File transfer protocol
i) Discussion groups
j) MUDS and MOOS
l) Mailing lists

a) Proven Tips for Personal Email Acquisition
b) How To Exchange Your E-mail Address For Internet Job Placement Alert
c) How to Access Internet’s Abundant Resources
d) Strategies for Searching the Internet
e) How to Evaluate the Quality of a Biomedical Website
f) Online Educational Resources
g) Internet Tools for Biomedical Professionals
h) Most Visited Biomedical Sites
i) 20 Internet Terms You Need To Know


Nothing could be done on the Internet without a provider. They specialize in Internet services. Here are some recommended providers:
(1) America Online
(2) Compuserve
(3) Microsoft Network
(4) Earthlink
(5) At & T worldnet
(6) Skannet
(7) Successdigestcybermall
(8) Yahoo
(9) Fastermail
(10) Hotmail

Generally, providers are referred to as Internet Service Providers (ISPs). They have sufficient resources and infrastructures for e-mail account/address provision, domain name registration and website hosting.

Once you enter a site, what first appears to you is a start-up page. It is otherwise known as a portal. Portals are peculiar to each website. The presentation, format, colour, design, menu and contents of website are never similar. Examples include:
The ten sites above are your golden keys to the Internet. Enter any of these URLs on your browser and see the amazing resources you could work with especially the LINK pages.

URL means Uniform Resource Locator (website address)
BROWSER is the software installed in your computer that gives you access to the Internet e.g. Internet Explorer and Mozilla Fox.


The e-mail is simply an electronic or digital medium of information exchange. One can send and receive information through it. Messages are always sent through the computer system which must have a telephone connection. The telephone connection could be wireless or wired.
A server is also needed in addition to the two already mentioned which controls what comes in and goes out as mails. These are the essential must-have materials for running e-mail.
You need not have a personal computer system before you can run e-mail. All you need to do is to walk down into a cyber café nearest to you and you will be surprised how simple it is to learn and know.

(1) Web mail
(2) E-mail program
The web mail is an Internet based e-mail which can be accessed from anywhere in the world. People using this kind of e-mail are not hindered whether in Nigeria, New York or Niger. They can access their mails no matter how far they travel form home. Example of web-based mail is MSN (Microsoft network)
The e-mail program is software, which enables computer users to run e-mail but messages cannot be received elsewhere except the same system. It is not web-base. A good example is Eudora.
Generally, e-mail addresses have three major components:
USER NAME e.g. biodun2002
HOST NAME e.g. yahoo
UPPER LEVEL DOMAIN NAME e.g. .com (upper level domain names are always preceded by a dot).
An e-mail address from the above is therefore

Acronyms of upper level domain names are:
edu (education)
org (organization)
net (network)
gov (government)
mil (military)
info (information)
biz (business)
co (company)

The conventional identity card is often requested when our identity is to be ascertained in the real world. It could be used to give or deny us of our priviledges. This scenario is no less the same on the Internet. Before you could do anything, your identity must be known. The following terms are used to indicate you identity on the Internet:
(1) E-mail ID
(2) E-mail account
(3) E-mail address
No one shares your ID with you. It is peculiarly and exclusively yours. Without it, you cannot send or receive information on the Internet.
The process of creating an ID for you is simple. All you need to do is to write your name followed by @ and again by an ISP name of choice.
Name……….. benardsolomon
Special designation…….@
e-mail address is therefore…… (note the absence of any space between the letters).
In some cases, people sharing the same name could be many already having an Internet presence. In such situations, alphabets, numbers or other keyboard character could be used to validate a distinct identity e.g.

You can conveniently send mails through organization providing e-mail services. You pay them some money and they do it for you. It is as simple as that. You may need to scout around to get a better deal. In the alternative, your yahoo box is well customized to performing this task. Here are some simple steps for you to follow:
(1) Double-click on the internet explorer icon on your computer desktop.
(2) Type on the URL space provided and press the enter key
(3) Click on mails
(4) Type your address on the ID locator
(5) Type your password on the password locator
(6) Click on sign in (at this stage your box will open for you right there on the screen.)
(7) Click on compose at the left hand side of your box. An empty space will be opened for you to type the letter

Before writing a letter, you must have determined the purpose or subject of the letter and the destination of the letter. These two issues must be settled before writing any letter in the real world. On the Internet, the same rule holds. The moment your box displays an empty space for your letter, the following icons appear with it:
(1) TO… in this space, type the e-mail address of the receiver
(2) SUBJECT…in this space, type the subject or heading of your letter
(3) EDITING SPACE…. type your letter here and click on the send button after completing the work (in this case your letter).

If you are interested in saving the draft copy of your letter, click on the save draft button. You might want to send a letter to many recipients simultaneously. Just type their e-mail addresses on the CC (carbon copy button) before clicking on the send button.

The World Wide Web is loadable on any system having the Internet explorer installed. A peculiar website address is
Protocol: http
Domain name:
Directory: online courses
Filename: index
File type: html (hyper text mark-up language)

Staying online is a money-gulping exercise. Paying per minute can cost you a fortune. Here are some simple hints for cost reduction or browsing off-line:
Keep a word processor running: when you come across interesting information, copy and paste it into the word processor or text editor to read or print later.
Browse offline: using the browser’s features, it is possible to save an entire html file. You can also save pages you haven’t visited yet; just right-click on the link to the page you want and select save it without opening it so that you can read it offline.
Use the find option (CTRL+F) to search large pages of text rather than scrolling.
Open multiple browser windows: you can load several web pages at a time by using open new window (CTRL+N) or file new web page browser in navigator, then toggle between pages using ALT+TAB so that you can browse one page while another is loading.


With the Internet explorer, the following browser features will make your experience delighting:
HOME: Clicking on this feature on the menu bar leads you to the first page (homepage) of the website and this is generally about the mission statement of the site.
BACK : This button returns you to a previous page if you want to re-load the contents of the page.
FRONT : This button leads you to the next page after finishing with the present page.
STOP : This button suspends your connection on the internet i.e. the moment you click on this menu, the site cease to load.


You can get yourself familiar with online courses available by visiting this website at

INDIANPAEDIATRICS: Several texts of scientific papers and letters to the editor could be found in this website. Interested scientists could access old issues and current ones. Go to www.indianpaediatrics .com

ONLINE COURSES AND EDUCATIONAL SOFTWARES: all these could be found at www.hku/biochem/Doc/resources.html

THE LANCET: if you are a qualified specialist in cardiothoraxic surgery, histopathologies, imagining (radiology or nuclear medicine) go to

U OR M MEDICAL SCHOOL : pre-clinical curriculum-com 11 lectures are complemented by small discussion groups facilities by infectious disease experts……blood smears and recognizing the histopathology of cancers…

PDF/adobe acrobat-HIME verse………details, feedback, discussion group’s information resource…………visual/aural topics. Histopathology, anatomy, heart sounds…

SMART DOCTOR’S HOME PAGE……Student small group discussion…UPMC
Pathology case…..Histopathology (Backwell science….Discussion Groups and Newsgroups…
INSTITUTE OF HEALTH SCIENCE-Biomedical science subjects…
Immunology, microbiology, clinical biochemistry and histopathology in understanding the pathogenesis of….seminars and participate in discussion groups. Go to

UNIVERSITY OF LEICESTER CLINICAL SCIENCES LIBRARY OUTREACH…..of Dermatology, British journal of haematology, British Journal of ophthalmology …..LISTSERV discussion groups list of psychiatry related

The resources available on these afore-listed sites will thrill you if you can be there!

Searching for and getting relevant information on the Internet cannot be successful without an in-depth knowledge of search engines. Once you know which search engine to use, you are guaranteed a successful result.
Here are the search engines I recommend for a delightful search:
(1) ASK: this search engine receives literal questions from you e.g. where can I find resources on HIV? It is as easy as that and you only need to wait to see things happen. Go to
(2) LYCOS: this site searches by keyword. Go to
(3) HOTBOT: this is one of the top search engines with direct hit package. go to
(4) EXCITE: this is an excellent tool for finding the most useful sites. Go to
(5) GOOGLE: this is a particularly user friendly search engine. Just type your search topic on the search locator and press the enter button on the keyboard. Google searches the web using a complicated mathematical analysis and gives you the top ten ranking sites concerning your topic. Go to
Your Internet experience can no longer remain the same with these resources at your disposal.

Apart from the e-mail, other systems are available on the Internet for accessing the vast information on the Internet. One of such is the telnet. It is a tool that allows you to connect to a remote computer using special software known as telnet client e.g. NCSA.
You can access several sites on biomedical topics via telnet. URLs of telnet of interest to biomedical workers are:
(1) Telnet://
(2) Telnet://
(3) Telnet://
(4) Telnet://
(5) Telnet://
One interesting thing about telnet is that it enables you to access bulletin boards to post messages.

Files could be transferred from one computer to another on the Internet via this method. Both text messages and images are transferable allowing for the transmission of such messages. One could have links with several discussion groups through this system. Examples of such include:
(6) Ftp://


These could be Netlinks, Usenet or Newsgroups. Netlinks is a network of Internet users, which shares common interests. They share opinion and discuss on subjects of interest to them.
Usenet is the largest, single, conglomeration of newsgroups on the Internet.
Newsgroups are different groups of Internet users, which exchange information between one another. Examples of discussion groups of interest to biomedical workers are:
(7) Bionet.cellbiol
(8) Bionet.microbiology
(9) Bionet.immunology

MULTIPLE Dungeons are online multi-users games that provide virtual environment of almost every conceivable type. In a mud, you supply the computer with demands that move your imaginary self through an imaginary environment. The great advantage of MUD over conventional computer games is that many players can interact with each other in the same imaginary environment often also adding to that environment.
Moos (MUDS object oriented) are derivatives of MUD that can be used not just for playing games but also for electronic conferencing. MOOS of interest to biomedical workers include the bioMOOS, the neurosurgery MOO, the diversity university MOO and the college town MOO.
In a MOO, academics from around the world can meet online without physically leaving their offices.
This great tool is accessible via telnet and hypertext transfer protocol. Go to these sites for a perusal:
(1) telnet://
(3) telnet://
(4) moo://
(5) telnet://

Frequently Asked Questions can be your saving grace when you are fixed on any subject. The resources available on these pages are specifically tailored to meet the needs of online users.
Here are FAQs on newsgroups, FTP and the Internet:

There are several unpublished resources not found in the world wide web. These kind of resources could be obtained through membership of mailing lists where practical issues are discussed.
Electronic mailing lists of relevance to medicine and biomedical sciences covers special areas like dermatology, family medicine, anesthesiology, diarrhoeal diseases and disorders, obstetrics and gynaecology, cardiology etc. some of them are listed below:

Academic dermatology ACADERM-L
Leukaemia, lymphoma,
Myeloma HEM-ONC
Cancer-l CANCER-L
Obstetrics and gynaecology OB-GYN-L
Medical laboratory MEDLAB-L
To subscribe to any of these lists, send an e-mail with the message (subscribe e.g. subscribe MEDLAB-L BENARD SOLOMON. That command will make you an automatic member of the list. However, you might be required to confirm your entrance to the list and to introduce yourself to other members immediately.


Most people could be motivated to get a web presence if information is available to them on how to acquire a personal e-mail address bearing in mind the obvious fact that the e-mail is the cheapest means of communication ever devised by scientists. Learning about how the Internet works and operate could also be easily achieved through the e-mail coupled with the improved computer-internet-communication skills and self-improvement for high productivity derivable from such exercise.
The benefits accruable from having a personal e-mail address include:
Faster communication better than the conventional mail, reaching its destination in seconds even when sent to the United States or Australia
Less physical effort than sending a letter through the post as there is no need to buy stamps or envelops
Free online service once the hardware, software and internet connection are in place
Unlike communication by telephone, email does not require the simultaneous attention of both parties-so Physicians may find it more suitable than the telephone for communication about simple and non-urgent problems
Easy dispatch of same piece of information to several people simultaneously-for example, you can circulate memos, agenda, and minutes or even disseminate educational materials
Receipt of course materials through the auto-responder service provided by your lecturer without his physical “send” input

To get you up and running on autopilot to acquire a personal email address by yourself, here are the 3 simple, basic steps to follow:

Access To A Linked Computer System
Because of the economic situations in developing Countries including Nigeria, majority could not afford private Internet connection. However, you can make use of other people’s linked systems at very affordable cost. The cyber-café closest to you provides such service. Visit one of such during your spare/ break time, buy a ticket which you will use to access the linked computers and type the user name and password on the ticket in the dialog box on the computer screen.

Knowledge Of Specific Websites
There are thousands of websites online but not all of them provide email services. A good knowledge of email providing websites is therefore necessary before you can sign up any email address. Here are lists of websites that provides free email service:

Enter any of the sites listed on the browser’s web address locator after double-clicking the Internet explorer icon on the desk-stop of the computer. Wait for the site to fully load and click sign up button to begin the process of getting your own email address.

Filling Electronic Forms
As soon as you click sign up on the website you are exploring, an electronic form will be displayed which you will be required to fill. Although yahoo is the most popular email service provider online, I do not recommend that you sign up with them as a beginner because their form is too cumbersome. Go to instead; their form is very simple and easy to fill. Information often required are your biodata, alternate email address (use a friend’s email address for this), post code (24001 for Ilorin) and your phone number. You will also need to fill-in your proposed email address ( e.g. and a password. After filling the form, click submit and wait for the confirmation of your email address.
You may need to choose an alternative address suggested by the system if need be and click submit the second time. You will be guided through the other changes required automatically. It is very simple. Once your email address is confirmed, write it down with the password for keeps. Give the address to friends and colleagues who are e-mailers.
Make it a habit to use your box regularly and learn how best to manage your account. I hope you’ll act on the information in this article to establish a personal presence on the Internet and improve yourself and develop your career using computer-internet-communication technology.

B. How To Exchange Your Email Address For Internet Job Placement
The Internet as an information technology tool does not only fire us up to acquiring computer skills but also enables us to perform the following activities:
(1) Sending email
(2) Browsing the World Wide Web
(3) Searching For Information
(4) Playing Games
(5) Sending Fax Messages
(6) Listening to/Reading news
(7) Hanging-on to discussion groups
(8) Downloading software
(9) Teleconferencing
(10) Chatting Online e.t.c

Of all the aforementioned, sending and receiving email are the simplest, easiest and the basic foundation for Internet skills acquisition.
The Internet literacy level among biomedical professionals in Nigeria is still abysmally low. While some have acquired personal email address by compulsion, others simply do not see the reason why they should have one. Among those who have it, very few of them know how to maximally use it.
There is a necessity to motivate medical laboratory scientists and other biomedical scientists not to only have personal email address but to also open their eyes to some information they could readily have access to.

2 Great Steps To Putting Your Email Address To Immediate Use
(1) Announce It To Your Friends, Colleagues or acquaintances
This step is recommended for Internet Johnny Just Come (J.J.C.). Once you open an email address, the first thing you should do is to make it available to your friends and colleagues. You can write it, text it, or fax it to them as soon as possible. This step will make it easy for them to send message to you. When they send any message to you, make sure you take immediate steps to quickly reply those messages. You will be laying the foundation to easily acquiring the necessary skills and learn how to use all the email management tools in you box which include:
(a) Check mail
(b) Compose
(c) Save Draft
(d) Forward
(e) Move to
(f) Delete
(g) Blind carbon copy (BCC)
(h) Carbon copy (CC)
One thing you must not do is to send email to anyone whose consent you have never sought. This is what is called spamming which is a great offence on the Internet. The service provider (ISP) could block your email address permanently as a result. They have to do that so as not to suffer as an accomplice in crime.
I’m aware that some people out there are saying despite the fact that they have given their email address to their friends, nobody has deem it fit to send them any message. No problem. I’m going to walk you through a simple step to ensure that your email box get stuffed with information anytime you open it. This naturally leads us to step 2.

(2) Exchange Your Email Address For Job Alert
There are some websites on the Internet which specializes in giving visitors timely information on job vacancies anywhere in the world. Some operate as job sites, job database, and job search engine while others operate as job bank. Most of these sites provide tools for you to enter your email address on the log box provided on their sites. There are some who require you fill a simple form on their site to sign up for their free job alert service which cuts across all specialization in the medical fraternity. Here are the sites I recommend you visit and enter your email address:

Make sure you patiently read the instructions on these sites so as not to miss vital information.


It has often been said that most Internet users are e-mailers. They constitute the online fun seekers who equate the e-mail to all about the Internet. To them, browsing means e-mailing; no more, no less. Thousands of US dollars are spent daily on the Internet sending mails for fun. A visit to the nearest cyber café will throw more light on this and you will no less agree that about 75% of surfers are e-mailers.
You can however improve on your browsing skills by moving beyond the level of the e-mailers. How could this be achieved? That is the purpose of this article. You will be told where to get abundant biomedical resources for your education and research.
The Internet’s most abundant resources are found in the World Wide Web (www) portion.

The www is a group of similar and inter-related pages, which occur most usually in text and graphic forms. A web page is an electronic sheet where information is inscribed in text and graphic for the consumption of users.

Most websites welcome their users through the HOME page where the surfer grabs the mission statement of the site. Consequently, other pages may include the following;
News items
Online courses
Position papers etc.
This is usually a comprehensive page in a website. You can easily determine the degree of popularity of a site by the content and resources available on its link page. Your visit to a website is incomplete if you have not seen the link page. Always surf to this page whenever you browse. For a start, I recommend that you go to and access the numerous educational resources at your disposal by clicking the link page.


You can access the www in the following 3 ways:
Uniform Resource Locator is the address of a website. Enter the address of a known website on the rectangular space on the browser of your system e.g. Internet explorer after loading it. Press the enter key and wait for some seconds until the site appears on your screen.

This is another gateway to the www. It is an electronic news medium sent to your box by a Webmaster you had previously given your e-mail address. It keeps you informed of current issues in your field. To subscribe for one, go to and type your e-mail address in the newsletter space provided on the home page.
Alex Cochrane manages Ibms newsletter. He recommends websites for further information that you can click-on right inside your mailbox to access the biomedical world.

Search engines are the Internet’s information finders. They help you to find any information you are looking for in matter of seconds. Many www sites are accessible through this medium. Go to; type biomedical education inside the provided rectangular space and click the search button. You will have hundreds and thousands of www sites to access.


Searching the Internet demands the right knowledge and strategies in order to get what one is looking for and doing so in record time i.e. as easy and fast as possible.
There are too many things on the Internet covering any conceivable area of life and education. A savvy Internet information seeker must therefore be able to first of all know where to get what he wants and develop the strategies to accomplish the same.
A combination of several resources is necessary to obtain hard-to-find information concerning specific areas of interest in biomedical sciences generally. Let’s consider the following search tools for the purpose of better understanding:

There are many search engines that automatically conducts information search for you within seconds. Thousands of query results are turned out at times but these may be of little benefit if the search engine is not a highly efficient one. What I’m saying is that one thing is to know that you must use search engines to conduct information search and another thing is to know the right or best search engine to use. Search engines belong to different classes. Your life and work will be made easier if you can identify the right engine to use. This simple process is a breakthrough and can save you lots of time and money when conducting Internet search.
Google is one of the best search engines on the Internet and is very powerful. Although it is an American based resource, it returns several thousands of results within the shortest possible time from American databases. That is just its limitation but it is highly recommended. Any time you want to search for anything on the Internet just go to and enter your query. Your search query may be the topic of your project or thesis. Type it inside the box without using any Boolean logic. If you are working on the “management tips for small scale enterprise”, enter it like that in the rectangular query space and click the search button. Wait for the results. This occurs within seconds. Sift through the results and choose the ones you think are most useful to you.
To complement this tool and enlarge your search frontiers, “all the web” is another search engine you can use. It is also known as fast search. Go to

Other search engines include:

These tools enable you to view possible locations of sites where you can find relevant information at a glance. You will however need to use search engines to first locate these directories and guides before mining through to get what you want. This first line of action gives you access to best sites concerning your query. Select the ones you want and keep them as your favorite sites which you will visit repeatedly in the future.
Go to google and type “management book directories on the Internet” or better still for more specific search, type “shopping directories” or any other one that meet your own interest as a professional. Hang on to one of the sites returned and exploit the vast information at your disposal.

These repositories of knowledge are a must-visit on the Internet. To know what other scientists are doing all over the world, you must visit journal-based sites regularly to learn new things in your area of specialization. While some charge economic subscription rates, others are available free of charge.
A one-time access to literature database online without charge is available at Using these resources regularly will expose you to a lot of valuable information. Try and check out these sites too:
You can mine the archive of these sites if you so wish.

For you to use this tool, you must first belong to one of the mailing lists related to your field on the Internet. Once you sign-up, you will receive a guide on the netiquette of the list.
For a start, try to hang on to get acquainted with the kind of questions people ask and learn from contributions of experts on the list. Your breakthrough could come from this arena. Make sure you participate after acquiring broad knowledge of what members are doing there. If you do this well, you are on your way to networking with great intellectuals and experts in your field you never dreamt of meeting in your life. For more on this, go to

Portable document format files contain the largest repository of information on the Internet. Any book you can think of in the real world could be on the Internet too. When it is published, the practice of majority of authors is to have it in PDF format. Before you could access these documents, a software known as acrobat reader must be installed in your system. Some authors will allow you to access a portion of their books and demand that you buy it if you are interested in having a copy for keeps.

You need to identify portals in your field to maximize your access to information on the Internet. Several resources are provided with your interest in mind on these sites, which you cannot afford to miss. Here are portals relevant to your field:
Money Matter:
Discussion Board:
Stock issues:
Clinical chemistry:
Medical microbiology:
Biomedical Science:

I hope that these resources will be of immense benefit to you as you continue to search the Internet for information of utmost interest to you.

The World Wide Web is the best repository of information on the internet. To obtain required information however, it is pertinent that you as a surfer have an in-depth knowledge of how to evaluate the quality of a website so as not to waste precious time and money on resources which cannot be of use to you.
What criteria should you use to determine the quality of a biomedical website? I shall be walking you through six proven criteria for evaluating the quality of a website before hanging on to it. Mind you, once you are able to identify highly rated websites which interests you, it will be easier for you to mine the archive of such website for future use and I assure you that the knowledge you will so acquire will astound you.
Here are the factors you must consider in evaluating the quality of a need-meeting biomedical website.

The mission of a website is usually located on the home page of the site. Make sure you take some time to read the raison d’être of a site and if it is in line with your interest, keep it as one of your specific sites. You may need to revisit the site many more times in the nearest future. On the other hand if the mission statement of the site is not appealing, leave the site immediately and navigate your way to another one. I’m suggesting you do this because of the many distractions of the internet and once you are entangled by this, sorry, you might miss your way completely in the wild, wild world of the internet.
To explain myself better, what I’m saying is that if you are looking for information on biomedical courses, the mission of the site you will hang on to must be a provider of such service clearly stated on the home page. Go to and read the message on the home page.

Websites are created for certain categories of surfers. As a biomedical scientist, your primary interest may not be an e-commerce site. A biochemist would need a biochemical site, microbiological site for a microbiologist and histological site for a histologist etc. Always marry your interest and specialization to the site you will hang on to. Here are some recommended sites

Do not just scroll through a website and abandon it. Devote some time to check through all the categories of information available on the site ranging from news, resources, books, groups, affiliates, articles, newsletters, softwares, cds, dvds etc. You can stumble at what you are searching for if you follow this advice. Once you are satisfied, the website becomes a qualitative one to you.

What makes you to like one book more than the other could be that the book is well packaged and organized. The ease at which one navigates and use a website determines the quality of such site. If it is well organized to your satisfaction, you will want to depend on the site for what you want. For example, the ibms website organizes its content guide on the left hand side of its home page which makes it very easy for visitors to navigate across the site. Go to

Any website worth its salt will make other resources of interest available to visitors in its home page. This is done to complement the service rendered by the site and to build confidence and repeat visit. Such a strategy excites the surfer who enjoys the ease at which desired information is being obtained. You are missing a lot if you have not made it a habit to exploit the LINK page of the sites you regularly visit. Start doing that now and see what incredible resources you will come by.

This is the least factor you should consider in evaluating the quality of a website except you are a photo centric person. The visual and colour presentation of some sites could thrill and sweep you off your feet. Be warned! If you are carried away by what you see, profitable time could be wasted in hanging on to less profitable site with no adequate information of interest.
Consider these six criteria critically and use them to build your archive of good biomedical websites.

For those who are familiar with the use of the Internet, getting instant links to biomedical resources could be a little bit boring if one considers the time spent in sifting through results of various search conducted. A one time quick access to these resources is desired. Likewise, the newbie need a thoroughly researched guide for accelerated Internet education and networking.
This article is meant to meet the needs of these groups of people. I hope it will meet the expectation of such individuals.

General Search Tools
You can use these tools for a perusal of all there is on the Internet. Check out the following:

Medical Search Tools
For a more specific and need-meeting search, these sites are highly recommended:

Educational Links
More knowledge could be acquired if you dare to visit the following educational sites

Teaching Tools
Please try and hang-on to these sites for some time:

Connecting with professional colleagues world wide is an art which need to be cultivated as a knowledge seeker. These discussion groups could be of tremendous help:

HistoNet send an e-mail message with "subscribe" in the "subject" line (
Anatomy: send an e-mail message with "subscribe ANATOMIE-D your e-mail address" in the body of the message. (
Association for Clinical Biochemistry: send an e-mail message with "joinacb-clin-chem-gen firstname lastname" in the body of the message. (
COMPMED (Comparative Medicine): send an e-mail message with "subscribe COMPMED firstname lastname" in the body of the message. ( of the COMPMED Discussion Group are comparative medicine, laboratory animals and related subjects. This discussion group is for biomedical researchers and people working with laboratory animals. They also maintain a COMPMED website.
Confocal Microscopy: send an e-mail message with "subscribe confocal" in the body of the message. (
Cytopathology: send an e-mail message with "subscribe CYTOPATH-L firstname lastname" in the body of the message. (
Electron Microscopy and Analytical Spectroscopy (LEMAS): send an e-mail message with "join lemas firstname lastname" in the body of the message. (
Familial Cancer: send an e-mail message with "subscribe FAMCAN-L firstname lastname" in the body of the message. (
Forensic Pathology: send an e-mail message with "subscribe FORENS-L firstname lastname" in the body of the message. (
Hematopathology: send an e-mail message with "subscribe HEMATO-L firstname lastname" in the body of the message. (
Human Molecular Genetics: send an e-mail message with "subscribe HUM-MOLGEN firstname lastname" in the body of the message. (
Immunohistochemistry: send an e-mail message with "subscribe ipox-l" in the body of the message. (
Laboratory Science Educators: send an e-mail message with "subscribe CLSEDUC-L firstname lastname" in the body of the message. (
Medical Laboratory: send an e-mail message with "subscribe MEDLAB-L firstname lastname" in the body of the message. (
The listowner is Pat Letendre. Pat also maintains the Medical-Laboratory web site, where she has compiled many resources for clinical laboratory professionals.
Microprobe: send an e-mail message with "subscribe" in the "subject" line. (
Microscopy: send an e-mail message with "subscribe microscopy" in the body of the message( The Microscopy Listserver Archives are on-line, covering the period October, 1993 through March, 1997, and will be updated monthly. The MSA Technologists' Forum has a home page accessible through the same web site. (
Molecular Diagnostics: send an e-mail message with "subscribe MxDIAG-L firstname lastname" in the body of the message. (
Nephrology & Renal Pathology: send an e-mail message with "subscribe NEPHRO-L firstname lastname" in the body of the message(
PathNet: send an e-mail message with "subscribe PATHNET firstname lastname" in the body of the message(
Pathology: send an e-mail message with "subscribe PATHO-L firstname lastname" in the body of the message(
Pediatric Pathology: send an e-mail message with "subscribe PEDPATH firstname lastname" in the body of the message( )
"Saneth", the new Histology Listerver in Spanish.
Ultrastructural Pathology: send an e-mail message with "subscribe" in the body of the messageOfficial list of the Society for Ultrastructural Pathology (Diagnostic Electron Microscopy in Pathology)


Newsletters are the web’s easiest means of acquiring knowledge and information about recent developments in the biomedical world. They are released daily, weekly or monthly as the case may be. To receive one through your e-mail box, you will need to sign up for it on the website publishing the letter.
However, you will need to fill any form placed on the subscription page.
Here are websites where you can sign up for newsletters and keep yourself abreast of timely biomedical information of interest.

This is a search engine from Norway also known as All The Web. It typically gives more hits from Europe and Asia than American-based search engines. It could be used along with google as a complimentary search tool. Go to

Some are posted for free subscription while others are cost demanding. Interval of updating varies from monthly, quarterly to yearly just as for journals in the real world. Past issues could be mined from archives as posted by publishers.
Check out for these online biomedical journals

H. Most Visited Biomedical Sites: Experts reveal Where They Go Online –You Too Can Go There And Learn From Their Secrets
Imagine going to school to learn without a teacher to teach you. It is possible to still acquire the knowledge being sought for through discipline and self help but no one can wave aside the necessity of having a good teacher or mentor in the quest for knowledge. That is why in our Universities, supervisors are assigned to students to guide them in whatever study they undertake.
On the Internet, this scenario is the same. It will be very difficult for a newbie to know where to go on the Internet except there is somebody to guide him step-by-step. Neglect this fact and get lost in the wild, world of the Internet. That is simply the blatant truth. When I started my Internet apprenticeship, I had to rely on the well-written guide by Stephen Slap to get going. I shall ever be grateful to him for that. To help you get going like he did for me, I had lunched a website where you can get Internet resources in the biomedical and general fields. This article is actually a combination of the experiences of astute biomedical webmasters from whom I think you could profit. We shall be seeing their Internet identities and favorite websites. If experts tell you where they get their resources then you should know that you are in for a great time. Here are the menus for you:
Immunohistochemistry-in situ Hybridisation: this is a comprehensive list of resources on the internet. It includes a detailed look at immunohistochemistry, immunoflourescence and in situ hybridization. Discussion boards, photo gallery and related links are also available. Go to
IHC WORLD: this page consist of: online information centre for immunohistochemistry, IHC world discussion forum, online discussion board for immunohistochemistry, and IHC world protocol database, online searchable protocol database for immunohistochemistry. Go to
Forest Jones Webpage: you’ll get in this page school notes where you find homework assignments (, puzzle makers where you make puzzle and word searches(, sears-a store where you buy electronics( and Pogo where you play games and have fun(
Bright Instruments: A company supplying Bright microtomes and cryostats manufactured in UK.(
HOSLINK: An hospital and pathology web site with extensive links to health related web resources and under the anatomical pathology tap a large number of links to pathological sites. Hoslink also contains some downloadable pathology manuals and an electronic histomethods manual. You will find here electronic journals in almost all biomedical fields. Contributors are sought to provide additional suitable articles and materials for the site. Richard Powell maintains the site. Go to
I will personally encourage you to visit Hoslink and enjoy the resources there for your utmost pleasure and knowledge.


(1) HTTP: It is an acronym for hyper text transfer protocol which is a system of transferring web pages over the internet to be read by browsers on individual computers.
(2) HTML: This is an acronym for hypertext marked up language which is a programming language used for creating and editing sites on the WWW.
(3) WWW: An acronym for World Wide Web which is a text, graphic, sound based segment of the internet.
(4) WEB SITE: A group of web pages with related objective and mission having several links with one another.
(5) HOME PAGE: This is the first page of a website. It welcomes visitors to the site and also gives general information about the site and its mission.
(6) PORTAL: This is a web site that contains directories, pictures, search engines, tourism, groups and e-mail facilities for easy navigation by an internet newbie (newcomer). Repeated visit to portals like and will expose you to several Internet resources.
(8) DOMAIN NAME: similar to URL. It is like the business registration name in the real world.
(9) UPPER LEVEL DOMAIN NAME: this refers to the nature or category of a web site e.g.
gov....... government

(10) TELNET: A segment of the Internet that allow users to log on to a remote computer. A password is usually needed to accomplish this task.
(11) FTP: Acronym for file transfer protocol. It is a system that allows you to transfer your files to other computers on the Internet especially the www.
(12) ISP: Acronym for Internet service provider. This could be in form of web hosting, domain name registration, merchant account provision, e-mail provision etc.
(13) SOFTWARE: Preset program that enables you to perform specified tasks on your computer.
(14) SHAREWARE: A type of software that you could use for a specified period of time for trial. The producer or marketer expects that you buy it if you are satisfied with the quality of the software.
(15) FREEWARE: A type of software given free to users. They could be downloaded right from the web site of the owner e.g. IntantGet and free download manager
(16) SURFING: Randomly moving from one place to the other on the Internet without a specific mission.
(17) BROWSING: A more focused surfing on the Internet. It could be to check your mails using any of the ISPs facilities e.g. yahoo
(18) SEARCHING: Looking for a specific thing on the Internet. This is often easily achieved with search engines like
(19) E-BOOK: A book produced electronically or digitally. It has a great advantage over the traditional book because it does not have the same weight as the former and a shelf is not necessary for its upkeep. It could be delivered from the author's computer into the computer of millions of readers around the world.
(20) SEARCH ENGINE: A web site that specializes in finding information touching anything on the Internet.

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