Onto Journals…

We (at Coko) have been working with Collabra Psychology to develop a Manuscript Submission System with them. The cool thing is, we can re-use a lot of work that we put into Editoria since we built PubSweet with the notion of highly reusable components (on the frontend and backend)…

I find it so satisfying to see our ideas and hard work put into building systems with the ‘right level of abstraction’ paying off. We are pretty much putting together a cluster of tech that can be re-assembled to meet a huge variety of publishing workflows very quickly…

The platform is called ‘xpub’ for now and it’s looking pretty good. We were able to assemble a basic dashboard, submission page, and editor┬áplus link it up to INK for MS Word -> HTML conversion in a matter of days. All still in early days but looking great.

Login page for our first Journal platform.
Login page for our first Journal platform.

You knew the day was coming … ­čÖé

Coko and Communities

Kristen Ratan (co-Founder of Coko) and I have been pondering ‘the next phase’ of Coko. We have an organisation in place, with great people, and we have developed products (Editoria, and more coming soon) and frameworks (INK and PubSweet). Also, of course, we have developed the Cabbage Tree Method for facilitating ‘users’ (use-case specialists) to design their own products.

So…next up… community. It seems to me it is an interesting next phase which will require a lot of thinking about. The complexity comes from the fact that we have multiple primary stakeholders at play. A rough breakdown (note, each category is a complex ecosystem of diverse roles – all of which we still have to think through):

  1. PubSweet backend – this is a ‘headless CMS’ built for publishing workflows… however, it is a technical software whose primary community would be developers that commit to its continued development. Additionally, I would argue, its use-case is a whole lot broader than capital P Publishing… any organisation that wants to develop workflows for producing content (which is pretty much every organisation that exists) could benefit from this software. Publishers are just a tiny subset.
  2. INK – the web service for (primarily) managing file conversion pipelines. This is also a technical ‘backend’ whose primary community would be developers. INK’s use-case is also broader than ‘just’ publishers.
  3. INK Steps – INK processes files through steps which are small plugins. These can do anything from file conversion, to validation, content parsing etc…. the primary community for this is possibly more tightly connected to publishing requirements, but the builders of steps are more likely to be those involved on the production side of the workflow ie. file conversion experts, content miners etc
  4. XSweet – a very specific content conversion pipeline for producing HTML from docx. Primary community would be file conversion experts.
  5. Editoria – the monograph production platform. Primary community – Publishers but also interesting to any org that produces books.
  6. Journals – we are on our way to producing a Journal platform. The primary community for this is also publishing organisations…
  7. Ecosystem – we are building out an ecosystem of projects. So as much as possible we need to consider how we interact with and build community/collaboration with other open source/open access (etc) projects.

It is a complex stack..our job is to work out all parts of this stack, understand what they look like, and think through why they would want to be involved in a community, and how…

Coko’s Efforts getting Out ‘n About

It seems the Coko meme is getting out there. Just these last few weeks we have seen the following:

Stenci.la – we put some money into assisting ‘, including flying the founder Nokome over to San Francisco and introducing him to funders. The result is that Nokome just landed a very nice grant from the Sloan Foundation. We don’t lay any claim to Nokome’s great work, but it’s good to see that our help was instrumental in helping this great project along the way.

HTML Typescript – Recently (last week) Wendell Piez, who we work with for Docx to HTML file conversion, presented at the well known JATSCon about his work with Coko. The preliminary proceedings are available online for Wendell’s talk┬áand I hear the video will be available soon too.

Texture – if one slot at JATSCon wasn’t enough…┬áTexture was also presented. It is an online JATS editor produced by the Substance Consortium which we co-founded. Proceedings here.

Penguicon, Carnegie Mellon – I recently presented Coko at these two events and upcoming we will be presenting Coko and various projects at SSP, AUP, Open Source Lisbon, Wikicite, OSEHRA, Open Source Albania and more!

March for Science – Coko CoFounder Kristen Ratan was lead organiser for the San Francisco March for Science. I couldn’t be there (was in the desert) but it apparently was a wonderful event.

Open Source Alliance for Open Science – we have 28 open source projects for open science coming to join in a day working out how to work together. Starts tomorrow in Portland!

Lots happening ­čÖé