Wikio

Scientific Publishing or collaborative process through blogs ?

Since some weeks, I have some needs in 2.0 tools. My needs are twofolds: scientific publishing tools and collaborative site, as Google Site (Google seems nice, but I would prefer to host my own open source solution). Indeed, at a first glance, these two needs seems to be quite close. I was wondering whether they could not be addressed through a small variation of actual publishing platforms, as the open source solution that I am using, wordpress.

I will take the example of my scientific needs, trying to connecting with blogging. What seems to me really important for scientific publication purposes are

  • Visibility. Visibility is really important, it let others sharing, discussing and appropriating ideas. Note also that scientists are professionally evaluated through their number of publications and scientific citations (a nonsense mechanism according to me, generating hilarious / pathetic behavior in the scientist community).Visibility is granted with a blog. Discussion can be done through comments. Links to a blog can be tracked.
  • Credibility. To that aim, there does not exist any other mechanism at my knowledge than peer review.Peer review can be adressed through comments written by an authorized anonymous expert for publication in a digest.
  • History. A scientific article is a living work. Research consists in a slow process of cerebral synthesis. For instance, I have ten opened mathematical works. From time to time, I work one of it and integrate some new idea, as a software maker releases new version.This is quite naturally addressed with posts : each post describe changes, including for instance a pdf file of the new version of the article.
  • Indexation and classification. Indexation is nothing else but tagging.  However classification can not be achieved with my standard blog platform: I can just publish posts. I would like to publish sub / blogs that contains either sub / sub / blogs or posts, as a classical file system. At a first glance, it is the only thing that is needed. Would such a system exist, I would surely put all my scientific production over it.

To my perception, needs for collaborative processes are not far away from such an “arborescent” blog: the remainig task would be to have a more elaborate gestion of user rights.