Reinventing Discovery - Th New Era of Networked Science (Anglais) Broché – 17 décembre 2013
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In any of the topics that I am deeply familiar with, such as the current reward system for academic scientists (peer-reviewed publications are gold), I can say that Nielsen is spot-on and insightful. He ties together well all of the stories and descriptions of the scientific process and by the end, I think he's done a great job of convincing us all of his main point: We have a tremendous opportunity to transform and multiply the power of scientific research in the coming decades. But it won't happen automatically and there are some attitudes and policies that need to be changed to ensure we achieve this revolution. Nielsen gives concrete specific solutions to the barriers to the revolution. Furthermore, he gives advice to all of us as to what we can do as individuals to promote a change in science. My students and I in our teaching and research labs have taken the leap towards open science, and it has been tremendously rewarding. So I encourage you to read this book and to take your own small steps towards transforming science, whether you're a scientist, a fan of science, or an interested supporter of science (taxpayer!).
I rate this book 5 stars. Incidentally, I almost rated it with 4 stars because I was so frustrated at the black and white photos that I desperately wanted to see in color when I was on the plane! I realize this is a cost issue, but DARN! I was able to cancel this negative factor by adding in a bonus star for a truly excellent job Nielsen does with sourcing his information. He does such a good job that you can even read the "notes" section and understand what he's talking about and learn further information beyond the text. Kudos to Nielsen for an excellent book!
A "data web" or Wikipedia of science is a great idea. You cannot abolish journals in the next 10-20 years, given money and self-preservation issues for these journals. And, peer review is currently necessary to prevent bad apes from publishing crappy or fraudulent science, although maybe being able to comment and vote papers up or down Amazon-like could be made to work, as discussed in a recent blog by Joe Pickrell in regards to "Why publish science in peer-reviewed journals".
For now, it is a good idea to publish papers in Open Access journals which have a policy of publishing sound science with less emphasis on subjective measurements of importance. This way, anyone anywhere can read your paper and give you feedback and improve the overall project, so that your paper becomes an evolving piece of work. A scientific paper can and should be changed in Wikipedia style, with dated entries for changes made, so that the paper grows and changes with time. There are a couple of relatively new open access journals that could maybe support such a format, including Discovery Medicine and the Frontiers series of open-access journals.
I also think that scientists should deposit all data, analyses and conclusions onto a hopefully soon-to-be-created Wikipedia-based science portal, or maybe the Synapse Portal being created now by Sage Bionetworks. Give everyone on the planet who wants one a unique researcher ID.
You don't have to reveal your researcher ID to anyone else, other than your tenure committee, boss, or whomever else you want or need to impress, so you remain anonymous to most people, if that is what you prefer. Thus, you can get credit (also known as micro-attribution) for all the comments, criticisms, and anything else you contribute on the Wikipedia site or on journal sites with comments on certain papers. If your value system is also that you are doing science to improve humanity, cure a disease, or advance fundamental knowledge, then you'll just add such comments to the Wiki site and onto online comments for published papers because that is the just the right thing to do.
The fundamental power of humans to get stuff done collectively is so incredibly obvious with Wikipedia already, but this is illustrated in other ways in this book in regards to the whole experiment with Fold-It.
People just hanging out in their home, with basically no knowledge of biochemistry, are helping to figure out protein folding. Give people a chance to contribute and they will do so.
Anyway, this is a fantastic book, highly recommended that everyone read this book! The author has done an amazing job of synthesizing quite a bit of information in his "call-to-arms" for open science.
Gholson J. Lyon, M.D. Ph.D.
Utah Foundation for Biomedical Research
I have long believed that decision making methodologies are one of the places where there is the most easy ground to gain. We mostly do not make good decisions, we have no effective methodology, our biases run amock, facts don't matter near as much as they should and most people don't know or couldn't care less what that means in terms of results.
This book made me think more about how online tools could shepherd decision making in certain situations where something called praxis (not theory or opinion) could be agreed upon. Where opinions rule, collaboration may actually produce "collective stupidity". Collective intelligence really requires and shared and agreed upon base of principles and facts that clearly can define right from wrong to a degree.
But where answers really exist, software and web technologies provide us many great opportunities to advance. We can fairly easily and effectively experiment our way to a set of such tools by measure of results and extend.
This idea lends itself to itself. Imagine and Open Source Web enabled Collaboration Tool Set that develops a tool people can use to improve the tools themselves and then be used for other efforts bringing back more ideas for tools that work. There is something wonderful, especially in software development, to using your own tools to do the work. Here that strategy might really pay dividends in a very leveraged way. Anyone knows of such an effort, please comment as I would love to help with it.
This book is very much about online collaboration. I was more interested in the general potential of the notion than the science. I found it easy enough to focus on the part that really was of interest to me. Some may not.
Terrific work by the author and I am especially grateful for the reference list in the back of the book. I will go through it in detail.
Open science including open access to scholarly communication and open data web, the author, identifies are big steps towards the road to building scientific information commons. Guarding data to scientists heart is no more good for science, he maintains. The era of networked science, the author indicates, has the power to revolutionise science and digital collaboration is key to this revolution.
Nielsen himself a physist has for long advocated for open access. I should add that networked science is best achieved through effective use of metadata.
The author's willingness to recognize the strengths, weaknesses, and limitations of various approaches to scientific research goes a long way toward preventing his book from being an unrealistic, speculative tract, or an unfair critique of traditional scientific research. Although the author enthusiastically advocates his views, he does not exaggerate the benefits of his proposals and does not ignore or downplay their weaknesses and limitations. Whether you find the author's contentions, arguments, and conclusions persuasive or not, the book is worth reading. It is a thoughtful and thought-provoking exploration of a timely and important topic.