Monday, January 30, 2012

A week after #scio12, #rwa and reinventing discovery

This week has seen a convergence of three topics.  First, I got back from the Science Online 2012 unconference a little over a week ago (1/22).  I had been meaning to write a post to wrap up the sessions I attended, but then I started to see a lot of news concerning the Research Works Act.  I have also been reading Michael Nielsen's Reinventing Discovery, and there has been a good deal of discussion about that book on the net as well, including from the famous #scio12 @BoraZ.  So, with all this open access and open science discussion swirling in my head, I figured it was a good time to put the electrons down on the blog.
  1. Science Online 2012.  I tweeted a bunch of the sessions already (and blogged about one), and most of the sessions have some form of online abstract, so I don't need to go into the details.  What struck me most about the conference was the discussion between the science journalists and the scientists themselves.  Scientists are stuck in a hard place because many academic departments and/or institutions frown on bloggers/tweets and people who try communicate their research to a general audience.  Journalists have a hard time working with scientists who do not understand their craft.  These two sessions particularly caught my attention.
  2. Research Works Act (RWA). While I had known about the RWA since well before the unconference (January 5th), the topic didn't catch fire with scientists until a post from Fields Medalist, Dr. Gowers wrote "Elsevier — my part in its downfall".  That sparked a huge amount of discussion and other blog posts from a variety of scientists.  Many of those posts are cataloged at Michael Nielsen's Polymath Wiki page on journal publishing reform. (I see some posts that are missing on the wiki, so I will add those later.)
  3. This brings me to Michael Nielsen's book Reinventing Discovery.  I have been slowly reading the book (a library copy), and I was reading it on the way to and from the Science Online Conference.  Two copies were being given away at the conference, but alas, I didn't win a copy.  In any case, here are some good reviews of the book by Bora, John Dupuis and Martin Fenner.  Michael also talked about his book on Science Friday.  Here is the podcast last Friday, January 27th,

1 comment:

gunu kumar said...
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