Read more about Geoffrey Bilder on their team page.
The other day Noel O’Boyle wrote to tell me that he had updated the Ubiquity plug-in that we had developed in order to to make it work with the latest version of Firefox. The problem was, I had *also* updated the Ubiquity plug-in, but I hadn’t really indicated to anybody how they could find updates to the plug-in. /me=embarrassed. So it seemed time to provide a home for some of the prototypes and experiments that we’ve been developing at Crossref.
OK, so this has nothing to do with any Crossref projects- but there is an interesting new PRC report out by Mark Ware in which he explores how SMEs (small/medium-sized enterprises) make use of scholarly articles and whether the scholarly publishing industry is doing anything to make their lives easier. This is a topic that is close to my heart. For the past few years I’ve been saying (most recently at SSP09) that I think scholarly publishers are much too quick to dismiss the possibility of creating an iTunes-like service for scholarly publications (aka “iPub”).
We are looking to hire an R&D Developer in our Oxford offices. We are look for somebody who:
Is passionate about creating tools for online scholarly communication. Relishes working with metadata. Has experience delivering web-based applications using agile methodologies. Wants to learn new skills and work with a variety of programming languages. Enjoys working with a small, geographically dispersed team. Groks mixed-content model XML. Groks RDF. Groks REST. Has explored MapReduce-based database systems.
Allen Renear and Carole Palmer have just published an article titled “Strategic Reading, Ontologies, and the Future of Scientific Publishing” in the current issue of Science (http://dx.doi.org/10.1126/science.1157784). I’m particularly happy to see this paper published because I actually got to witness the genesis of these ideas in my living room back in 2006. Since then, Allen and Carole’s ideas have profoundly influenced my thinking on the application of technology to scholarly communication.
OCLC has published a report (PDF) identifying some requirements for what they call a “Cooperative Identities Hub”. A quick glance through it seems to show that the use cases focus on what we are calling the “Knowledge Discovery” use cases. As I mentioned in my interview with Martin Fenner, there is also a category of “authentication” use cases that I think needs to be addressed by a contributor identifier system. Still, this is a good report that highlights many of the complexities that an identifier system needs to address.
Martin Fenner continues his interest in the subject of author identifiers. He recently posted an online poll asking people some specific questions about how they would like to see an author identifier implemented.*
The results of the poll are in and, though the sample was very small, the results are interesting. The responses are both gratifying -there seems to be a general belief that Crossref has a roll to play here- and perplexing -most think the identifier needs to identify other “contributors” to the scholarly communications process- yet there seems to be a preference for the moniker “digital author identifier”.
So while doing some background reading today I realized that legal citations already widely support a form of “citation typing” in the form of “Introductory Signals“. The 10 introductory signals break down as follows…
In support of an argument:
1) [no signal]. (NB that, apparently, this is increasingly deprecated.)
4) see also;
6) compare … with …;
7) but see;
I was happy to read David Shotton’s recent Learned Publishing article, Semantic Publishing: The Coming Revolution in scientific journal publishing, and see that he and his team have drafted a Citation Typing Ontology.*
Anybody who has seen me speak at conferences knows that I often like to proselytize about the concept of the “typed link”, a notion that hypertext pioneer, Randy Trigg, discussed extensively in his 1983 Ph.D. thesis.. Basically, Trigg points out something that should be fairly obvious- a citation (i.
Discussions around “contributor Ids” (aka “Author ID, Researcher ID, etc.) seem to be becoming quite popular. In the interview that I pointed to in my last post, I mentioned that Crossref has been talking with a group of researchers who were very interested in creating some sort of authenticated contributor ID as a mechanism for controlling who gets trusted access to sensitive genome-wide aggregate genotype data.
Well, I’m delighted to say that said group of researchers(at the GEN2PHEN project) have created a “Researcher Identification Primer” website in which they outline the many use-cases and issues around creating a mechanism for unambiguously identifying and/or authenticating researchers.
Over the past few months there seems to have been a sharp upturn in general interest around implementing an “author identifier” system for the scholarly community. This, in turn, has meant that more people have been getting in touch with us about our nascent “Contributor ID” project. The other day, after seeing my comments in the above thread, Martin Fenner asked if he could interview me about the issue of author identifiers for his blog on Nature Networks, Gobbledygook.