Posts Tagged ‘freesoftware’
- EduPunk Repositories: If you don’t have access to an institutional or subject repository you can self-archive in, here’s a review of some alternatives.
- The evolution of scientific impact: PLoS’s article-based metrics rely on user comments on articles, but it has been difficult to persuade scientists to comment on each other’s articles on the Internet.
- Sustainability of OA archives: What if the archive you depend on disappears for lack of funding? ‘If Cornell can’t underwrite arXiv, arguably the most successful preprint archive ever, what does that mean for disciplinary repositories generally?’
- P2P U., an Experiment in Free Online Education, Opens for Business: ‘A group of professors and graduate students from around the world has started a new university of their own online, with an unusual model that is more like a book group than a traditional course.’
- When the “Wiki Way” = Poor Quality: Why ‘the distributed, “Wikipedia model” of content production does not work for textbooks’.
- PLoS Mulls Hosting Software amid Growing Crossover between Informatics and Publishing: ‘the team is ironing out details, such as whether to create a repository like SourceForge. . . .’ Maybe someone will notice that unlike PLoS, SourceForge doesn’t charge anything to let you contribute to the projects it hosts, or to start your own project there.
- E-textbook Mania Strikes Higher Ed: ‘truly open access textbooks offer a model that in the long run best serves faculty and their students. . . . Students are far more interested in the textbook crisis than the journal crisis.’
- Open-source textbook co. Flat World goes back to school with 40,000 new customers: The company makes money by selling customer service, printed textbooks and audiobooks; the electronic versions are free. Sounds like Red Hat.
Imagine if there was a kind of free software called Green Free Software. Perhaps kernel.org would be accessible only to people who paid to subscribe to it. Authors of patches for the Linux kernel would have to submit them first to Linus Torvalds; if the patch was accepted, the author could then self-archive it in a separate OA source-code repository after an embargo of one year. There would be many different OA repositories of Linux patches, all containing different patches. Companies like IBM and Intel, whose employees contribute to Linux, would have OA ‘company repositories’ for their employees’ patches. Many authors wouldn’t bother doing the extra work to self-archive their patches. As a result, it would be impossible to get all the latest patches (and hence to get a complete, up-to-date Linux kernel) without paying for a subscription to kernel.org. In an attempt to solve this problem, some companies would establish ‘mandates’ to require their employees to self-archive in their company’s repsoitory. Of course these mandates would not affect independent programmers. Even if the mandates were 100% successful, anyone wishing to assemble a complete kernel would have to download patches from hundreds of different company repositories and combine them together.
Now ask yourself: would that be a better system than the one we have now, where anyone can download the latest complete kernel from kernel.org for free?
Open Journal System seems to be the best available free software solution for running a journal. Their demo is quite extensive and allows access to most of its functionality. Culture Machine is an example of an OJ journal in the UK with support for collaborative writing and sharing in academia in general.
My biggest problem with it is that although its peer reviewing options are good for the currently existing model used in academia, it doesn’t seem to be modular enough to allow the kind of open peer reviewing i’ll be proposing to journals. In other words, it maps onto the existing workflow of journals, while what i’m looking for is a web publishing system that will assist in innovating in the models of reviewing and collaboration in general. In addition to reviewing, i believe we need web tools for dynamic, open relationships within editorial collectives, and for changing the idea of printed journal (more on this is another post). Feature request is always as option. I’ll write a review of the OJS from the perspective of these open and dynamics models of reviewing, co-editing and publishing that are on my mind as a logical next step in knowledge production.