May 13, 2013, 9:26 AM —
Image credit: Flickr/WHOLOGWHY
Finding federal government scientific information used to be a challenge because scientific data was spread across multiple agencies and departments. You might luck out and find what you're looking for right away, or you might get bounced around.
Science.gov makes that hassle go away. The site bills itself as "a gateway to government science information and research results," and that it is. Science.gov enables visitors to search more than 55 scientific databases and 200 million pages of science information in a single query.
Launched in 2002, Science.gov is an interagency initiative of 17 U.S. government science organizations within 13 federal agencies. (These agencies form the voluntary Science.gov Alliance which governs Science.gov.) The site serves as a gateway to more than 2,100 scientific websites.
Users can do a general search or search within a dozen categories, including Agriculture & Food, Astronomy & Space, Environment & Environmental Quality, Earth & Ocean Sciences and Area 51. (Kidding about that last one.)
Among the specific federal databases contributing to Science.gov are the USDA Food and Nutrition Center, the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office, NASA, the Department of Education and the Library of Congress.
Science.gov includes multimedia files in its database and features a fairly basic mobile interface.