BROMEC : Bulletin of Research on Metal Conservation (conservation of metallic cultural heritage artefacts)
In the news this week, Priscilla Chan and Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook) have purchased an academic search engine Meta, and are set to… “offer Meta’s tools free to all researchers” at some point in the future. Very nice of them.
Currently meta.com’s search is shuttered to the public, but the site is inviting sign-ups. Meta.com is not a name that’s been on the tip of my tongue, or covered here. I don’t recall if public access to it was ever available, but possibly not. Apparently the pre-Zuckerberg Meta was one a clutch of startups trying to apply AI to a limited set of the academic literature — often in the relatively tame-but-lucrative biomedical field. I had a glancing post here on the apparently-similar Iris AI 2.0 back in November. At its search tool level Iris AI seems to propose much the same search capabilities as Meta — but via a demo of 30m+ records harvested from repositories by CORE. In contrast the pre-Zuckerberg Meta.com covered PubMed, according to a November 2015 press-release, combining that with metadata input from “dozens of publishers”. Another November 2015 press release rather ambitiously claimed that Meta.com enabled a user to…
“navigate the entirety of scientific information (25 million papers with 4,000 new ones published daily)”.
After the Zuckerberg-boosted relaunch the stated aim is to expand the functionality via third-party access…
“we will enable developers to build on it or integrate it into third party platforms and services … will embrace the ideas and efforts of researchers in the diverse fields that Meta intersects with – including machine learning, network science, ontologies, science metrics, and data visualization”.
Hopefully that opening up will also include open public access to the most juicy commercial bits of Meta.com, like the ‘early awareness’ Horizon Scanning module. This claimed to be able to descry a predictive map of future research agendas and trends…
“will enable academics and industries to maintain early awareness of emergent scientific and technical advances at a speed, scale and comprehensiveness far beyond human capacity, and years in advance”
Assuming that works as intended (I haven’t encountered any gushing reviews) I’m still not sure I’d want to absolutely rely on a predictive tool that only saw a fraction of the picture. Since a mere “25 million papers” seems a little lightweight, re: a claim to index “the entirety of scientific information”. On the other hand, if it covers all of the output in one’s tight little niche, and has semantic links out into a spread of related and similarly delimited fields, then it could be quite useful for some people.
There’s new behaviour from Google Custom Search, of relevance to Google CSE curators. In the dashboard, one can no longer edit a URL in place (for instance, make a simple updating of a URL from http:// to https:// ) and then save it to update it in the index. Doing this deletes the URL from the index without any warning. If you didn’t keep a backup copy of that URL pattern, you’ve lost it.
The behaviour is so remarkable and abrupt that I think perhaps it’s a temporary glitch. But for now, a wary CSE curator needs to:
1) open the indexed URL in the CSE then copy / paste it to Notepad
2) manually delete it from the URL base
3) make the corrections to the URL in Notepad
4) then paste the URL back into the CSE index, as if it were a fresh URL.
Backing up one’s CSE index (aka ‘annotations’) as .xml is probably also advisable, if glitches are indeed getting into the system.
Publishers have until 10th February 2017 to submit suggested humanities book titles to Knowledge Unlatched. Selected books are made Open Access in perpetuity, albeit usually minus the cover art/design as part of the Creative Commons PDF. Losses are defrayed by a consortium of libraries.
106 Knowledge Unlatched titles currently show up in OAPEN and thus in JURN. Although 343 titles were unlatched for 2016, which means that a lot more are coming soon.
The Victoria & Albert Museum “Persistent Identifiers for the Humanities (workshop report)”, 20th January 2017…
“… the British Library and the DateCite organisation (as part of the THOR project) organised a workshop before Christmas on this issue of ‘Persistent Identifier Services for the Humanities’.
It was apparent from the discussions in the workshop that the implementation of this infrastructure in the humanities is still very much in its infancy in all institutions. Some of the basic concepts inherited from scientific research do not seem to map directly across. For example, do humanities’ researchers consider their source material ‘data’. Or should we even be referring to ‘data’ as a ‘dataset’? It is not immediately obvious what the distinction between the two terms is. Is an individual museum object a dataset or is a set of museum objects a dataset in the same way as a set of data points in scientific research can be?
A separate point of discussion is how to distinguish between the physical object, its digitised version, its associated catalogue record and different versions of this record, (as knowledge is accumulated/revised) as this is not currently clear in DataCite. Although a similar situation was mentioned in the sciences with ice-core samples, where different digital datasets continue to be published from the same physical ice-core samples.”
“Availability of digital object identifiers in publications archived by PubMed”, 3rd January 2017. For…
“the period 1966–2015 (50 years). Of the 496,665 articles studied over this period, 201,055 have DOIs (40.48%).”
So just under 60% are without DOIs, and that’s for biomedical in PubMed — albeit when including thirty years of pre-1995 (pre the mass Internet) coverage. More recently, for 2015, the study found that 13.5% of new content was still without a DOI.
The DOI-free figures for the humanities will be far higher, according to “Availability of digital object identifiers (DOIs) in Web of Science and Scopus”, February 2016…
“Many journals related to the Natural Sciences and Medicine with considerable impact have no DOI. Arts & Humanities WoS [Web of Science] categories have the highest percentage of documents without DOI.” … “exceeding 50% only since 2013. The observed values for Books and Proceedings are even lower despite the importance of these document types …”
As for DOI availability within articles in repositories, IRUS-UK provides a “DOI Summary” field giving “the numbers and percentages that have DOIs available” in UK repositories, although the access to their datasets is controlled. IRUS-UK has no summary infographics that I could find, relevant to DOI availability. But it would be interesting to determine what proportion of UK repository free/open journal articles have DOIs.
Now updated and available as a Microsoft Office Excel .xls file (750kb)…
“Surfmarket [has] made a list of more than 7,400 journals in which […] Dutch universities and academic hospitals can publish in open access for free or with a substantial discount.”
570 of the titles fit the arts & humanities category, and these are all published by a small handful of establishment publishers.
It’s not possible to separate out the list’s eco/nature titles, since the “Natuur” category is too broad. At one end it ranges from New Zealand Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research through to Potato Research, and at the other end goes spinning off into chemistry, maths and physics titles like Polymer Bulletin, Probability Theory and Related Fields, and Progress in Nuclear Energy.
I thought the list might be a useful source of some new URLs for JURN. But there doesn’t yet seem to be any way to filter journals by their “hybrid OA” / “wholly OA” status. Random sampling of the list of the 570 humanities titles suggests most are hybrid, and that as yet they only have a few OA articles in them. Thought doubtless that will start to change, once mandates start to operate fully.
Klapalekiana (Czech Entomological Society, substantially in English)
“Are Open Access Monographs Discoverable in Library Catalogs?”, Libraries and the Academy, Volume 17, No. 1, January 2017…
The analysis indicates that only a small percentage of college and university library catalogs in the United States and Canada consistently enable discovery and access for the test sample.
“The open access aggregators challenge: how well do they identify free full text?”, Medium article-post, 7th January 2017. Looks at BASE and CORE…
when OAI-PMH (which is the standard way of harvesting open access repositories [was established,] no provision was made to have a standard way or a mandatory field to indicate if the item is free to access.” [But today] “many have in fact more metadata-only records than full-text records.
[BASE] “is only able to see 75 free records in National University of Singapore’s IR, 654 free records in Nanyang Technology University’s IR, 143 free records in Singapore Management University’s IR. I did not do a check to see if there were false positives in BASE’s identification of full text but [assuming] they are 100% correct, we see only a full text identification ratio of 0.6%, 3.8% and 2.7% respectively!” […] “the results for CORE are as dismal as BASE.
See also: “From open access metadata to open access content: two principles for increased visibility of open access content”, conference paper presented at Open Repositories 2013, 8th-12th July 2013, Charlottetown, Canada.
… only 27.6% of research outputs in repositories are linked to content that can be downloaded by automatic means and analysed (e.g. indexed). […] the median repository will only provide machine readable content for 13% of its deposited resources. [but] it is likely that these statistics are in fact rather optimistic …
Visit Britain provides nearly 15,000 selected copyright-free images, with a search box. The selection is obviously highly curated and high-quality, and no registration is required to download. If you have a pop-up blocker, you’ll need to whitelist media.visitbritain.com to get at the hi-res magazine-quality image download link. There are a few noticeable gaps in coverage, such as the major ceramics tourism hub which is the city of Stoke-on-Trent (one picture, on a search for “Stoke-on-Trent”).