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Tree of Life News

13 February 2009
Charles Darwin's 200th birthday has come and gone, but people are continuing to celebrate his scientific ideas and their impact. For inspiration and resources, visit the Darwin 200 web site of the Natural History Museum London.
9 February 2009
Science enthusiasts all over the world are celebrating Charles Darwin's 200th birthday anniversary on 12 February 2009. Find a Darwin Day event near you at the Darwin Day Celebration web site!
1 February 2009
The Wellcome Trust has produced a six minute video about the Tree of Life that appeared on the BBC One programme 'Charles Darwin and the Tree of Life' narrated by David Attenborough. You can watch/download different formats of this video, read the video transcript, play with the interactive version of the 'Tree of Life' and sign up to Tree of Life updates at the Wellcome Trust Tree of Life site.
20 September 2008
We've made browsing the ToL easier by adding new links to pages and media collections in our media data windows (the windows that open when you click on an image, thumbnail, sound or movie icon).
26 February 2008
Many Tree of Life pages are now featured in the Encyclopedia of Life. We are sharing with this project all content that is compatible with EOL licensing policies.
17 January 2008
We've added a brief user survey to our media data windows (the windows that open when you click on an image, thumbnail, sound or movie icon). The information gathered from these surveys will tell us what kinds of people are using our images, movies, sounds, etc., what they are using them for, and what we could do to make our media collection more useful to them.
21 December 2007
A special issue of the journal Zootaxa, Linnaeus Tercentenary: Progress in Invertebrate Taxonomy, features an article about the Tree of Life Web project:

Maddison, D. R., K.-S. Schulz, and W. P. Maddison. 2007. The Tree of Life Web Project. Pages 19-40 in: Zhang, Z.-Q. & Shear, W.A., eds. Linnaeus Tercentenary: Progress in Invertebrate Taxonomy. Zootaxa 1668:1766. Open Access: Abstract (PDF; 20KB) | Full article (PDF; 830KB)

22 August 2007
The Tree of Life and the Encyclopedia of Life have agreed to closely coordinate future activities, sharing content, and software tools. For more information, see Tree of Life Web Project/Encyclopedia of Life Collaboration.
7 March 2007
We've added new web services that let developers download the ToL tree structure. You can either download the entire tree or just a particular branch. For more information, see Tree of Life Web Services: Downloading the ToL Tree Structure.
2 March 2007
The Beetle Tree of Life (BTOL) and Tree of Life Web Project seek a web, database, and Java application developer. The position can also be filled in the context of a postdoctoral research project in biodiversity informatics. This position is now filled.
16 February 2007
Flickr users can now use our Flickr Photo Importer to copy their photos to the Tree of Life. You need to be logged in as a ToL contributor to use this tool. Don't forget to attach each image to a group in the tree, so your images will show up in the image collections of relevant groups.
8 January 2007
Tree of Life services have been affected by the recent University of Arizona Computer System Security Incident. The ToL servers were not affected directly, and all project data are secure. However, due to campus-wide measures to investigate and contain the attack we've been having sporadic email, general internet outages, and limited access to our databases. We've been working on getting all services back online, and hopefully things will return to normal soon.
19 June 2006
We have added new image galleries that let you browse through images for different groups of organisms. For example, the Arthropoda gallery will show you all of our images of arthropods, the Insecta gallery will show you all of our images of insects, and the Coleoptera gallery will show you all of our images of beetles. Look for links to the galleries in the collections menu in the right sidebar of branch and leaf pages.
18 May 2006
The Tree of Life Web Project is working with other people and organizations to initiate a collaborative digital library of the Sonoran Desert. The first planning meeting for this initiative was held at the University of Arizona Library on 18 May 2006. About 60 scientists, environmentalists, educators, librarians, and technologists were in attendance. The meeting featured presentations by the ToL, the University of Arizona Natural History Museum, the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, and the Rincon Institute as well as small group discussions that gave attendees a chance to network with potential collaborators. For more information see Sonoran Desert Knowledge Exchange.
25 April 2006
The top navigation bar now features menus that provide easier access to the main pages within the Tree of Life documentation. For more information about the navigation elements of Tree of Life pages see Navigating the Tree of Life. Also, there is now a link in the right sidebar under People, where you can find information about Tree of Life contributors working on a given branch and about other people who are interested in the group.
9 March 2006
Each revision of a Tree of Life branch or leaf page is now archived, and users can access previous versions through a link at the bottom of the current version. Pages also feature instructions on how each version can be cited.
13 October 2005
Release of version 2.0 of the ToL data entry tools for scientific contributors. Read more about it here: Tools for Scientific Contributors: What's New?
2 September 2005
New batch uploading tools for media files. Media contributors can now upload batches of images in a zipped folder, accompanied by an XML file containing the image data. Instructions are available on the Batch Uploading Media Files page (log-in required).
9 May 2005
We have expanded our tools for media contributors to include forms for uploading and annotating movies, sounds, animations, and documents (pdf files, ebooks, etc.) For more information see Contributing Images and Other Media to the Tree of Life.
26 April 2005
We have revised our tools for image contributors. There's now a new Edit Image Data form (see a preview here) featuring a new layout, a creative commons licensing option, and fields for additional, optional metadata. Images are now automatically scaled for use on ToL pages, so image contributors are encouraged to upload relatively large master images that can be used in a variety of different contexts. More information is available on the Contributing Images and Other Media to the Tree of Life page.
15 April 2005
The tree of life picture on our home page has raised a lot of questions among our visitors. Therefore, we've added the About the ToL Navigation Picture page, which provides some guidance for the interpretation of this image.
4 April 2005
Release of TreeGrow 1.1 and associated online data entry tools for scientific contributors. For more information about changes and new features, have a look at Tools for Scientific Contributors: What's New?
9 December 2004
ToL visitors can now download the entire structure of the phylogenetic tree that is used as the backbone for the ToL web site. These data are made available as a static XML file, which is updated every Sunday night to reflect the current structure. For more information visit the Downloading the ToL Tree Structure page.
3 November 2004
The ToL project has completed the migration of pages to the new site design. Our pages now feature an updated look and a new navigation system. We expect to do some more fine-tuning over the next few days. Please let know if you find anything amiss. Thanks!
18 October 2004
First generation of tools for treehouse builders released. Treehouses are ToL pages designed for children and the young at heart. While the project's scientific content (branch pages, leaf pages, articles, and notes) is authored by professional scientists, we are now opening up participation in the ToL treehouse area to anybody with an interest in writing about organisms. Go to the Learning with the Tree of Life pages for more information.
6 October 2004
As part of an ongoing site redesign, the ToL project gets a new ToL Home Page.
8 September 2004
Release of the first ToL image search tools. These tools let visitors search for ToL images according to a variety of different criteria.
6 August 2004
First generation of ToL online image contribution tools released. With this image contribution system, nature photographers and illustrators can now upload their images to the ToL database. ToL scientific and treehouse contributors will then be able to use these images on their ToL pages.
12 April 2004
TreeGrow 1.0 released to ToL Scientific Contributors.
23 February 2004
The first version of TreeGrow, the new ToL database client, is released to a select group of beta testers. TreeGrow allows ToL contributors to enter their data directly into the ToL database and to preview their contributions on the ToL site before submitting them for publication. For more information see the ToL Scientific Contributors Documentation.
16 February 2004
Lisa Schwartz has joined the ToL Home team in the position of editor/coordinator of learning materials. She will be leading efforts for the ToL NSDL project.
12 January 2004
The ToL database backend has been significantly revised to accommodate more advanced handling of data about images, contributors, and pages attached to branches and leaves.

For a list of past ToL events, please refer to the ToL History page.

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