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Curation App Helps Cull Out What's Important

Mohseni, Alex MD

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doi: 10.1097/01.EEM.0000431341.38022.d2

    Maria Popova, the creator of one of America's most fascinating cultural blogs, Brainpickings, says that “curation is more than packaging — it is to help readers discern what is important in the world.” Emergency physicians are masters of curation. We digest the massive dataset that is the typical ED patient presentation into a comprehensible one-liner that allows us to juggle the complexities of managing a large patient load. Curation is valuable in research as well. One question that we have all thought when researching a medical issue is, “What are the most important articles on this topic?” Until now, I have not seen a tool quite like Unbound Medline.

    Unbound Medline is a free app available on iOS and Android that searches and links to more than 20 million PubMed and full-text journals with a simple yet powerful interface. Its real value, though, manifests itself in its amazing Grapherence representation of the influence of each article. Click the Grapherence button after choosing an article in your initial search, and Grapherence graphically displays the articles that cite it. You can quickly determine which are the most influential articles related to your search topic by evaluating the connecting arrows and relative colors (more red means more inbound citations). Powerful, beautiful, and smart. Not every article has the Grapherence option and the reason is not clear, but you can increase your chances by limiting your search to “English” and “free full-text only.”

    I have to commend Unbound for resisting the urge to dump all the search results, and instead for developing an invaluable curation tool to help us quickly decipher what is important.

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