Philippine science and technology portal now online

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Information on science and technology in the Philippines is now more accessible via a single portal called science.ph. Located at http://www.science.ph,  the dotPH-registered domain is the first online S&T information search service in the country.

“This service is very vital in providing integrated scientific information to researchers, teachers, students, businessmen, and other users,” DOST Undersecretary for S&T Services Fortunato dela Peña said.

“As a centralized search facility, science.ph greatly facilitates access to information needed in research and development and other activities,” he added.

The new portal was developed by the information technology team from DOST’s Science and Technology Information Institute led by Donna-Ruth Montalban. It was borne out of DOST’s desire to provide S&T information faster and easier. As a portal, science.ph is essentially a gateway to consolidated S&T-related information gathered from various institutions in the science community.

Before the system was put in place, DOST clients and other information seekers used to browse and access several sites of the department’s 21 agencies before finding the information they need.

Through the portal, users can now access databases on the library holdings of DOST called the Science Information Network (ScINET),  as well as bio-bibliographical information on Philippine scientists, profiles of S&T institutions in the country, and profiles of DOST-funded or assisted research and development projects.

The site also contains abstracts and indices of Philippine S&T publications, including theses and dissertations, and indices of foreign publications on S&T. 

STII manages most of these databases. Other DOST agencies are also involved in the project, includingTechnology Applications and Promotion Institute, Science Education Institute, Philippine Council for advanced Science and Technology Research and Development, Philippine Council for Industry and Energy Research and Development, and Philippine Council for Forestry, Agriculture, and Natural Resources Research and Development.

The portal includes other functions such as default integrated search, category search, thesauri data entering, directory service for Uniform Resource Locator (URL) link collection, recommendation/suggestive system, collaborative filtering, search within a category, personalization and customization, and semantic web integration. These features make searching for scientific data much easier and faster.

According to Montalban, science.ph is more versatile than some popular search engines because it uses S&T-controlled vocabulary and thesaurus, which hastens the information search.

The team adopted the open source development concept and used open source technologies in developing science.ph, Montalban said.

As content development progresses, STII will include other features such as additional databases, e-commerce support for full text documents and other resources, user personalization and customization, full semantic Web support, and collaborative filtering system.

Other members of the project team are Enrico Florencio, Rosie Almocera, Maribel Palafox, Rodel Offemaria, Mona Montivirgen, Sherry Sarmiento, JJ Esguerra, Junjie Roasa, Edgardo Catorce, Efren Jamolod, Carmi Dometita, Marievic Villanueva, Robee Cruz, Domingo Tamayo, Louella Santiago, Alfon Narquita, Rhea Salim, and Leonor Arcilla.

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