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Archive for May, 2011

Well, this is just a short personal post about my research. I’m really excited about some of the stuff I’m doing, but the details are still not ready for public consumption. That research is waking me up at night at random times (lets say 3 or 4 in  the morning) and then I have trouble going to sleep. In a certain sense, this must be how vampires feel: completely alert and awake at night with a  clear vision of what needs to be done and and h0w to do it (this is a typical romanticized version of vampires, which do exist in nature, but look nothing like count Dracula, which is the typical class of vampire that this post refers to).

This wakefulness at night has profound consequences for my days at work. Basically, I’m not getting enough sleep and I walk the corridors with a slight headache and a characteristic lack of brain function during the day. Essentially, the only thing that keeps me separated from being a true zombie is that I’m still technically alive and my body parts are not falling as I shuffle by in the corridors.

Getting a sufficiently high dose of caffeine is not doing the usual trick. So if you see me walking around like  zombie: don’t worry. It’ll be fixed during the midnight hours.

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Quite recently my e-mail inbox has been inundated with requests to send my papers to Open Access journals and books.

The premise of Open Access is that authors pay for their work to become published and available at no cost to users.

The economic reality is that Universities pay exorbitant amounts of money for journals to stock their libraries and for access fees to published journals. In theory, grants pay for these services via overhead (think of this as a tax on grants by the Institutions). I think in practice that overhead on grants is not enough to cover these costs, so looking for an alternative economic model to make science publishing available to a wider audience at a cheaper cost makes a lot of sense. Here, the Open Access premise is that in this new economic model the overall cost to produce and consume published articles is reduced and transferred as a one time fee to the author.

(more…)

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