Thinking about Digital Publishing

Some implications of "digital" for scholarly writing and publishing

Will Octopus transform scholarly communication?

Photo by K. Mitch Hodge on Unsplash

Octopus is a new platform for scholarly research: somewhat like a preprint server, with instant publication, but Instead of a full article, a researcher posts just a component of an article: a problem statement, or a hypothesis.

I …

What is the link between French postmodernism and knowledge graphs?

Sounds unlikely, but that was the basis for a remarkable talk by Bob Kasenchak (co-authored by Ahren Lehnert) at an ISKO Meetup (14 June 2022). The talk began in uncompromising fashion with the cover of a famous work by French postmodernist philosopher Gilles Deleuze and …

Along came Google … and what happened next

This is the story of a tragedy: a step forward for the academic community that was resisted and then blocked. It’s difficult to imagine, but Along Came Google (Princeton, 2021) is as gripping as any thriller – except for the conclusion.

The story is simple. …

What impact does AI have on academic publishing? A new survey

This survey, produced by the Enago Academy, is a thorough and detailed look at the use of AI in academic publishing (the completed survey, “Role and Impact of AI on the Future of Academic Publishing”, is available for download here). While AI tools …

The Myth of Artificial Intelligence

Erik J Larson has written a passionate attack on the current fashion for AI. For him, the myth of AI is assuming that the current AI-based utilities we have developed can be extended into AGI (artificial general intelligence). His arguments are quite compelling, although, as …

Measuring Research: what everyone needs to know

Illustration by William Warby (Unsplash)

This short guide, in the “What Everyone Needs to Know” series from Oxford University Press, provides an outline of bibliometrics: measuring the impact and value of research. How to measure research is a topic that has been discussed and argued …

The Fiesole Retreat 2022: The role of the library

National Library of Greece, Athens (photo by Georgios Liakopoulos)

What are libraries for? If you are going to have a public discussion, why not start with the big questions, and that question came up repeatedly at the 2022 Fiesole Retreat, the first in three years, …

Is Reading Unnatural?

Vincenzo Foppa, Young Cicero reading (Wallace Collection)

Behind this talk (by Jeffrey Johnson, author of several books on UX design) was one great idea: that reading is unnatural. What Johnson meant by this seeming paradox is simply: any infant (unless handicapped) learns to walk; any …

Learning about AI by doing it

The JISC Explore AI website

Here was a webinar with a crucial difference: in addition to a presentation of a topic, delegates had the chance to try some hands-on interactive tools for themselves, in addition to being given a guided journey through the building of …

How the Academy captured literary reviews

An earlier post looked at who reads scholarly book reviews, and pointed out how difficult it is to access them outside an academic institution. For John Gross, in his The Rise and Fall of the Man of Letters (1966), this would come as no surprise; …

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