Archive by category | Technical solutions

Nature Neuroscience experience with peer-review consortium

In 2008, the journal Nature Neuroscience joined a newly created community consortium aimed at making peer review more efficient by allowing reviews to be transferred between consortium journals. In its current (April) issue, the editors look back at their experience with the Neuroscience Peer Review Consortium over the past year (Nature Neuroscience 12, 363; 2009).  Read more

Online patient communities

Disease-orientated consumer online communities radically change the way in which individuals monitor their health, but they could also create new ways of testing treatments and speed patient recruitment into clinical trials. So starts the editorial in the September issue of Nature Biotechnology (26, 953; 2008). From the editorial:  … Read more

WikiGenes, an evolving scientific tool

“”“>WikiGenes is the first wiki system to combine the collaborative and largely altruistic possibilities of wikis with explicit authorship. In view of the extraordinary success of ””>Wikipedia there remains no doubt about the potential of collaborative publishing, yet its adoption in science has been limited.” So writes Robert Hofmann of MIT in a Perspective article in the September edition of Nature Genetics (40, 1047-1051; 2008) about this “dynamic collaborative knowledge base for the life sciences that provides authors with due credit and that can evolve via continual revision and traditional peer review into a rigorous scientific tool.” From the article:  … Read more

Making best use of interrelated information

On the topic of the ‘data deluge’, Sarah Kemmitt notes at Nature Network that the UK Government has opted for an increasingly used technique (see, for example, Elsevier’s Grand Challenge) to scope ideas for a strategy for how to make best use of interrelated information.  Read more

Trustworthiness of online encyclopaedias

In its July Editorial Wouldn’t you like to know?, Nature Physics (4, 505; 2008) asks how much of the mass of information available online in encyclopaedic form can be trusted. The Editorial discusses various sources: Wikipedia, of course; Citizendium (with its associated Eduzendium); Scholarpedia ; and a brief mention of Encyclopaedia Britannica, which has just begun experimenting with user-generated input (although not noted in the Editorial).  Read more

Nature Precedings and open review, one year on

Today, 18 June, is the first anniversary of Nature Precedings, where researchers can post their unpublished manuscripts, presentations, posters, white papers, technical papers, supplementary findings and other scientific documents, which can all be “peer-reviewed” online by anyone in the scientific community. (The website was available before June 2007 in ‘beta’ form.) Santosh Patnaik, a user who periodically tracks Nature Precedings at the Nature Network Nature Precedings forum, estimates that the 500th document will be uploaded some time in the next two weeks.  Read more

Why there is not much online discussion of neuroscience research

Noah Gray, an editor at Nature Neuroscience, asks at Action Potential blog why neuroscientists are passing on the seemingly golden opportunity to communicate with one another online, for example on published articles at a journal website, or in an online journal club. Many have expressed opinions about reasons for this reticence: Noah links to some articles in his well-argued post, and you can read other thoughts (and find links to some of the same articles) at Nature Network (for example at Gobbledygook and at Flags and Lollipops).  Read more