Michael F. Gross, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of Biology
Department of Biology
Georgian Court College
900 Lakewood Avenue
Lakewood, NJ 08701-2697 USA
v: (908) 364-2200 Ext: 373
f: (908) 905-8571
Innovative or improved ways of doing things
Supporting Documentation (contact author for more information):
Documentation (Copies Of Scientific papers that could not have been written without the Internet.)
I have found the Internet indispensable to my research. For several years, I have been working with some colleagues in Delaware (Dr. Vic Klemas, Mr. Oliver Weatherbee) and Pennsylvania (Dr. Michael Hardisky, Dr. Paul Wolf) on federally funded ecological/remote sensing research projects. The goals of these projects are to use satellite data to study biogeochemical cycling in wetlands, wetlands vegetation biomass, and temporal changes in wetlands. The benefits of these projects will be an improved understanding of how wetlands affect global ecology, and an ability to understand and monitor man’s impacts on wetlands.
The projects have been administered through the University of Delaware, and most of the field work has been done in Delaware. Since my colleagues and I teach in colleges and universities, most of our data collection occurs during the summer. We do not have time to analyze the data in the summer. We have been storing our data on a mainframe computer at the University of Delaware. We need a mainframe computer because of the size of the data sets and our need for a powerful statistics package.
During the academic year, I have been analyzing the data remotely by using the Internet to access the data files, while physically remaining at my home institution (currently Georgian Court College in New Jersey). By keeping the data in Delaware, all persons in our research group have access to the same data files. The data themselves remain safe within the computer: they cannot become “lost in the mail,” which could happen if we exchanged hard copies of data files. Also, we have used e-mail on the Internet to communicate about our data.
Within the last three years, I have been able to publish the following five peer-reviewed research articles that would have probably not been published without the Internet:
Gross, M.F., M.A. Hardisky, P.L. Wolf and V. Klemas. 1993. Relationships among Typha biomass, pore water methane, and reflectance in a Delaware (USA) brackish marsh. Journal of Coastal Research (in press).
Gross, M.F., M.A. Hardisky, P.L. Wolf, and V. Klemas. 1991. Relationship between aboveground and below ground biomass of Spartina alterniflora (smooth cordgrass). Estuaries 14:180-191.
Gross, M.F., M.A. Hardisky, and V. Klemas. 1990. Inter-annual spatial variability in the response of Spartina alterniflora biomass to amount of precipitation. Journal of Coastal Research 6:949-960.
Gross, M.F., M.A. Hardisky, J.A. Doolittle, and V. Klemas. 1990. Relationships among depth to frozen soil, soil wetness, and vegetation type and biomass in tundra near Bethel, Alaska, U.S.A. Artic and Alpine Research 22: 275-282.
Doolittle, J.A., M.A. Hardisky, M.F. Gross, and V. Klemas. 1990. A ground-penetrating radar study of active layer thicknesses in areas of moist sedge and wet sedge tundra near Bethel, Alaska, U.S.A. Arctic and Alpine Research 22: 175-182.
I cannot understate the value of a nationwide computer network. It has greatly enhanced my own research productivity.