User:Daniel Mietchen/Notebook/Open Science/2010/10/03

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Digitization and networking in science

See also this blog post.

While scientists have gloried in the disruptive effect that the Web is having on publishers and libraries, with many fields strongly pushing open publication models, we are much more resistant to letting it be a disruptive force in the practice of our disciplines. — James Hendler


Definitions

  • Digitization: The extent to which computers are utilized during research, in comparison to what would technically be possible.
  • Networking: The extent to which all active researchers with research interests in a given area can be reached.

Table 1: Steps of the research cycle

Read this table as "Across research fields, most of step X of the research cycle" is low/ intermediate/ high in digitization/ networking.

Digitization
low intermediate high
Networking low recording of ideas reference management, preparation of manuscripts and grants Data acquisition and analysis
intermediate peer review formal publications
high conferences

Table 2: Instruments, Tools, methods

Read this table as "Most of the research performed using X" is low/ intermediate/ high in digitization/ networking.

Digitization
low intermediate high
Networking low excavations archives electrorotation, EEG
intermediate Neuroimaging
high LHC, wikis, blogs (and Science 2.0 in general)

Table 3: Fields of research

Read this table as "Most of the research in the field of X" is low/ intermediate/ high in digitization/ networking.

Digitization
low intermediate high
Networking low Arts and humanities; paleontology Mathematics, psychology, medicine, social sciences Analytical chemistry, computer science
intermediate Evolution of language Physics, neuroimaging, brain morphometry
high Particle physics, astronomy, genetics

A broader perspective

"if you're looking for a narrative that explains the future, consider this: Does the narrative promise you things that sound like religion? A world where today's problems are fixed, but no new problems have arisen? A world where human history is irrelevant? If yes, then you're in the fog of Singularity thinking.
But if that narrative deals with consequences, complications, and many possible outcomes, then you're getting closer to something like a potential truth."