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Searching Science Literature: Hubmed’s TouchGraph

Hubmed is a new interface to searching the biology and medicine related Medline database.  Hubmed has one feature that could help when researching a paper which is the TOUCHGRAPH feature.  TOUCHGRAPH visually helps in finding related papers as well as shows the relationships between papers.  The following screenshots show how to generate and view TOUCHGRAPHS:

1. Open HubMed and input search term and then search:


2. Hubmed has the ability to check whether searches should be lowercase:


3. Click on the correct search term and a list of papers appear:


4. Check a paper’s checkbox (or multiple paper’s checkboxes) OR click on a paper to view the abstract and then check the abstract’s checkbox.  After checking the checkboxes click on the TOUCHGRAPH button at the bottom.


5. The initial TOUCHGRAPH appearance if only one paper is selected:


6. Clicking on the info button above the title box (info box appears when box is highlighted) shows the abstract:


7. The real power of TOUCHGRAPH is when the title box is double clicked- a set of related articles appears:


8. Each of the title boxes can be double or single clicked to open related articles or abstracts.  This process rapidly leads to a network of papers:


9. There are various options to simplify the view if it gets too complicated.  Showing a single line of the paper title is shown here:


While the Touchgraph feature does not look as refined as the rest of Hubmed, it works, it is easy to use and it is useful.

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