This is a case study on finding out about a conference that you didn’t attend! I also include what I have learnt about what the APE 2014 conference covered.
There are blog posts from those who attended:
Richard Padley of Semantico blogged his reflections, on the theme of “the article of the future” and pointed out that the opportunity to move towards post publication peer review “puts pressure” on the concept of the version of record. He explores the question “could journal publishing therefore come to look a bit more like reference publishing, where there is an inbuilt assumption of updatability?” and considers the role of executable research objects, or outputs that are not prose text describing an output, but the output itself with the example of Github as a community site for software programmes and programmers as an alternative route to publication, than the journal. Other themes mentioned in his post are the reproducibility of scientific research, the evolution of the monograph and the shorter formats emerging from publishers and data mining and whether people will be able to extract meaning from articles without reading them!
There are slides on Slideshare, from those who presented:
Stephanie Dawson and Alexander Grossman of ScienceOpen.com, one of the new open access publishers presented slides describing a vision of the future of academic publishing. They stressed that research is becoming more open, as researchers use the Internet and blogs, and network with each other. ScienceOpen appears to be a site where researchers can read articles, network with each other, organise a collection of articles and publish articles to the community. It sounds a bit like Researchgate, Academia, Mendeley and their ilk (I shall dub them “RAM”!), but the question is, if it manages peer review and editing and makes the work public, is it not a journal? And if it makes work available A.S.A.P. and on open access, is it not also a repository? Apparently, the aim is to provide a freely accessible platform for researchers to share and evaluate scientific information, and it will aggregate open access articles to present to that community. As with the RAM sites, I believe that they will need to engage with the community in order to be successful, which is what the traditional journal does in order to attract submissions and peer reviewers, but on a much grander scale. Rather like F1000, too… it’s an increasingly crowded space! According to the slides, ScienceOpen will provide tools and support to the scientists and how it will make money is through publishing charges which include payment for: publishing of a final manuscript, copyediting, language editing, xml conversion and DOI assignment. I find that a clear breakdown of what you get for your “Article Processing Charge”. It’s due to be released in April 2014: I shall watch the space with interest!
Of course, there was plenty of Twitter activity:
See on Twitter itself, with the hashtag #APE2014, or if you want to find tweets that people have already found value in then you could search for that hashtag on a collation/curation site like Storify. (Why doesn’t Twitter’s advanced search page offer the option of looking for only tweets that have been re-tweeted or favourited?!) Here, we can see that someone from Springer tweeted that “social media activitiy around scholarly articles is growing by 5 to 10% per month” which appears to be a quote from a presentation by Stefanie Haustein, on Tweets and Mendeley readers.
You can find videos on Youtube, mostly uploaded by Martijn Roelandse. I don’t find it the most useful way to discover the essence of a conference, but here is some footage from Day 2:
Finally, I wish that I could also search through people’s updates on LinkedIn… but I think that might come in the future. I note that they’re integrating more closely with Slideshare and there are new features all the time.