OpenWetWare:Steering committee/Meeting - November 2007

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SC Reports

Brief reports on the month's activity should be written by each chair 2 days before the SC meeting. At the meeting each chair will bring up any open issues that require discussion, but won't need to recount everything described below.


  • Stable trend in edits and number of new articles per month for the period, compared to previous year.
  • Draft list of distilled site statistics - goal for next SC meeting is to see how hard it would be to automate the generation of wiki-stats. right now it has to be run manually.
  • If you want access to google analytics to see traffic stats, let bill know.


  • Nature MSB changes their OA policy to allow author to choose if they want to allow derivative works (in part due to our request)


News and highlights

  • UNM PHYC500 course highlight posted this month.
  • Do we want to switch the OWW Blogs news item to a permanent main page link?
  • Do we want the iGEM2007 item to remain up?


  • We decided to feed the SC blog to the main page and then use that to highlight other bloggers when there is a particularly good post, etc. This will also encourage using the blog more heavily which will be a good thing. An example of what the new home page would look like is here


Julius B. Lucks 08:46, 1 November 2007 (CDT): Stub of some notes - I'll fill in soon.

  • Rolled out new content of generated user page
    • By scanning the new user pages, it looks like 16% (11/68) have changed their User page content, and 84% (57/68) have not. There did not appear to be any correlation between the account creation time and whether or not they have changed it (although I did not check this explicitly.)
      • I think changing the Welcome email to be simpler, and direct them to their new User pages would be a nice strategy to promote them changing this page.
      • Also, Bill and I have started to seed the User_talk pages with this text that teaches new users about messaging via the talk pages, as well as encourages them to edit their User pages.
  • We only have 18 survey entries. We need to do something about advertising the survey better.
    • Ricardo Vidal 11:49, 6 November 2007 (CST):I put up a post at my blog and contacted a couple of people I think use OWW. Maybe making a small button to put up on OWW-user personal sites/blogs?


  • Julius recommended standard documentation, tutorials for the various extensions on the site. He and Mac will work on improving the existing documentation and aggregating it in a findable place.
  • We'd also like to have the ability to post a banner across the top of all pages (like wikipedia does for fundraising drives) -- in case we need to make an announcement about server outage, or about something like the survey. (Bill will work on implementing this).


  • Mac/Bill debriefed on number of things done this month: server move, improved user management, RSS aggregator.
  • Next month going to work on Word/Excel importers and on lab notebooks.


Julius B. Lucks 08:59, 1 November 2007 (CDT): Over the SC list, we discussed the possibility of 'publishing' OWW works on The basic idea can be seen on the [OpenWetWare:Steering_committee/Publishing_chairs#Recent_Ideas|Publising Chairs page]. This idea has been discussed with, and they think it sounds like a great idea. We need to discuss several things:

  1. Does this idea make sense for OWW? There is nothing stopping an OWW user from publishing a pre-print derived from the OWW wiki on, but do we want to officially promote it (and thereby have somethin to do with best practices)?
  2. How can we roll this out? Bill is already working on integrating the arXiv API with the wiki, and there was talk of adding it to the biblio pluggin. This means that arXiv id's will work just like pubmed id's and people can easily cite their arXiv works. We could even make this automatic when a work has been turned into an e-print.
    • The arXiv is not yet ready to handle automatic submissions (but will be soon). We could make a 'Publish to' button or link which then describes the manual procedure of turning the wiki page into a presentable PDF for submission. We will also have to write something about authorship in there as well. We will also have to create a list of journals that will accept a publication that has been posted on arXiv (Nature, PNAS, etc.) and a contact at that journal just in case an issue arises.
  3. Identify a user or group of users that is ready to try this process out and walk through it with them.


  • Julius will get in touch with Nature preceedings folks to see about putting together a list of journals that accept papers that have been shared on a pre-print server.