Great article on open source for open science

From Paul Peters, CEO for Hindawi, a great article on open source and open science/open access.

Rare in the scholarly publishing scene to find someone that understands the value of open source as clearly as is articulated here.

I’m So Lucky

I’ve been a Shuttleworth Fellow for just on two years, entering my third and final year. It has been an amazing experience. Right now I am in India at a Shuttleworth event. Of course the venue is just fantastic, surrounded by lakes in the beautiful district of Kerala. The meeting is on a boat (we are staying in amazing rooms on land). But also, its just incredible to me that I am here with 20 or so other fellows and what an astonishing bunch of people they are. Just totally amazing.

Feeling extremely lucky to be here.

Fires, Cars, everything

So, my last few days have had some unusual travel disruptions.

On Monday, there was a fire next door to my place in New Zealand. I was just leaving to rush to the airport at Kerikeri, about an hour and a half away. All was ok, but checking on the fire meant I missed my flight to Auckland, so I rebooked for Tuesday. On Tuesday, the plane was cancelled due to mechanical issues, so I rebooked for Wednesday.

On Wednesday I flew from Auckland to San Francisco, though the flight was delayed 5 hours. Someone had apparently forgotten to switch the body scanner on and so 53 people went through the scanner without actually being scanned. Problem is, they didn’t know which 53 people. So they cleared the entire international airport and rescanned everyone…

17 hrs later I got to San Francisco and had enough time to grab a drink with a friend, pack, and get up at 4am to fly to Los Angeles with Kristen (Coko) for a 2-day Cabbage Tree Method workshop I facilitated. The next day… flights canceled into SFO (San Francisco) due to the fires around the city …so we hired a car and drove back (6 hours). Giving just enough time to sleep, pack, and get a 9am flight to India…. which was delayed 1 hour leaving due to the fires… my stopover is 1.25hrs so it’s going to be tight…let’s see how it goes…

My Question for Today

So, I went out to Shippies for another surf today. It was awesome. On the way I was pondering a lot of Coko things. One thing in particular is on my mind – how do we change the solutions provision ecosystem in publishing today?

This is actually what Coko is all about – breaking down the legacy, big box, proprietary software lock-in that exists in the scholarly publishing sector today. But there are many things that need to change in order for this to happen and my mind is on one in particular.

The current situation is that publishers ‘buy in’ a solution. This comes with support for the software, hosting, deployment etc. Publishers only have a limited choice when it comes to selecting one of these solutions, each of which has been developed by a vendor and their own internal development staff. Hence, the developer market for publishing is pretty contained. But what if we could change that?

What if we could stimulate the current dev culture (and I’m being expansive with the use of ‘dev’ to include all those involved in the dev process, not just developers) to start working with publishers directly. What if every small town which has a university, which might have a small press or Journal of some description, did not have to look to the big software solution providers but could just ask their local dev shop to help them solve their publishing infrastructure needs…

What if we could decentralise the publishing development sector by empowering a whole lot of dev shops with the tools to build out publishing solutions for their local university?

Essentially, right now, this publisher development sector does not exist…dev shops don’t even know it is ‘a thing’…but if we could let them know and give them the tools to create it…. the change in the publishing sector could be exponential…

So I’m wondering how we could stimulate this to happen. What are the mechanisms we need to put into place to make this work?