The glossary story... Home    Author    Research    Methodology    Contact
  Glossary terms... A    B    C    D    E    F    G    H    I    J    K    L    M    N    O    P    Q    R    S    T    U    V    W    XYZ    numbers
  Collections... dose    elements    neutrons    nuclides    radiation    radioactive decay    reactions    reactors radiation safety   
units    U.S.Regs   
  Further Reading... general    nuclear science    nuclear engineering    health physics   
The Language of the Nucleus database uses XML and supporting technology to archive, search, and format glossary terms. In its basic form, XML is a suite of scripting tags used by computer geeks to store information in a form that lends itself to easy processing (by a computer!). The Language of the Nucleus XML data is structured to define all possible components of a glossary term, linkages to other terms, special formatting needed for mathematical equations, and even alternate representations for presentation of the information in languages other than English.

A comprehensive and richly linked glossary posed numerous technical challenges. Terms may be linked in meaning to other related terms. Others may have a definition that is no longer valid. The basis of our chemical weight system is an example, one that migrated from oxygen and eventually to carbon-14, a migration defined by the evolution of instrumentation. Add to the mix acronyms, symbols, archaic symbols, and other important information and the storage and presentation become tricky.

Where possible, we have defined a base term to which other terms are linked. An example from this online glossary is the positron. Our base term, the positron, presents the accepted definition, the two commonly used symbols, two commonly used synonyms, and links to three related terms. Positive electron is a synonym for positron but instead of populating this term with duplicate information, we simple define the positive electron as a synonym for positron. By linking back to a primary term, we can provide a comprehensive set of information that describes the character and use of the term.

The defining the structure, the character, and the use of terms in The Language of the Nucleus has been a challenging yet rewarding feat. We hope you will agree this glossary provides a fine service to the broad fields of nuclear science and engineering.

Craig Stone
November 1, 2006
Copyright © 2003-2006 Scientific Digital Visions, Inc. All rights reserved.

Our partner sites:
Argus Clearinghouse