Welcome to Things we read this week, a weekly post featuring articles from around the internet recommended by BMJ Labs.
- Aaron Tay has an interesting thought piece on whether or not Google & web scale discovery services are low skill cap, low performance cap tools. For your average user I think the UX of some of these systems is so poor that it’s hard to “summon” up the desire to spend time increasing your skill levels!
- Research Institute, creators of Apograf, have put together a summary of How Digital Technologies Can Improve Scientific Research: The Case of Peer Review
- Scholarcy have been doing some useful work to auto extract competing interest information and ethical compliance standards from preprints. Hopefully the big platforms will adopt this kind of tech so that we can have an open COI infrastructure as well as an OpenCitations infrastructure.
- Tom Van de Weghe’s summary of what AI can do for a newsroom (from December 2018) is an interesting read . Apparently the Financial Times were using a bot that warned the newsroom when it has been using too many male voices!
- Long but interesting read from Stephen Wolfram about A.I.-Selected content on the internet and his thinking for a US Senate subcommittee on “Optimizing for Engagement: Understanding the Use of Persuasive Technology on Internet Platforms”.
- HighWire have posted videos from their brilliant London Tech Week Lunch & Learn session exploring some future technology trends and how they may impact upon scholarly publishing.
- Amy Webb at the GEN Summit 2019 talks about how future tech could impact publishing:
- Nature News on the important topic of How to support open-source software and stay sane and the problems of securing funding open-source science software. Also see this Twitter thread about Elsevier and digital scholarly infrastructure.
- The bloxberg infrastructure, a secure global blockchain established by a consortium of leading research organizations to provide scientists with decentralized services worldwide, has launched. “The bloxberg Consortium aims to fosters collaboration among the global scientific community, empowering researchers with robust, autonomous services that transcend institutional boundaries. For example, with consented transactions on the bloxberg infrastructure, research claims need not be limited to one institution alone, but can be confirmed by the whole trusted network.”
- BMJ’s Helen King has an excellent round-up of publishing related blockchain projects, Blockchain in Publishing and Open Science, What’s the state of play?
- The Blockchain for Peer Review initiative and Publons are organizing a seminar to discuss the following:
- Can we develop common standards in order to improve the transparency, efficiency, recognition and transportability of the peer review process?
- What is the ideal technology and infrastructure to achieve that, and how can we prevent the duplication of effort? Is blockchain the preferred solution, or would we prefer centralized services? Or perhaps a combination of the two?
John shares his take on what makes the difference between success and failure: “Objectives and Key Results, or OKRs, are a simple goal-setting system and they work for organizations, they work for teams, they even work for individuals. The objectives are what you want to have accomplished. The key results are how I’m going to get that done. Objectives. Key results. What and how. But here’s the truth: many of us are setting goals wrong, and most of us are not setting goals at all. A lot of organizations set objectives and meet them. They ship their sales, they introduce their new products, they make their numbers, but they lack a sense of purpose to inspire their teams.”