Elsevier Introduces Protein Interaction Browser

The Protein Interaction Browser allows readers to view and interactively explore protein-protein interaction PPI networks for all proteins in a scientific paper. The browser is currently available for the Elsevier-published journal FEBS Letters.

via Elsevier.

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CrossRef Revises DOI Display Guidelines #yam

The new guidelines encourage CrossRef member publishers, affiliates, and others in the scholarly community to display CrossRef DOIs as full URLs in the online environment. (A CrossRef DOI is a persistent link to scholarly content.) To create a DOI URL, anyone can simply prepend http://dx.doi.org/ to any DOI.

via CrossRef Blog: News Release: CrossRef Revises DOI Display Guidelines.

The Magical Number Seven

Very interesting paper that i just learned about

The Magical Number Seven, Plus or Minus Two: Some Limits on Our Capacity for Processing Information

The Magical Number Seven.

Addressing the right needs for researchers and students

As a Product Manager I always wonder if I am really addressing the right issues for our users. I recently read an article (linked below) that talks about encouraging young researchers to be comfortable with asking questions and diving into the unknown. Great essay titled – The importance of stupidity in scientific research. Please read it. Though the essay is addressed to students following a PhD program, I could definitely relate to it in my daily work.

Some takeaways are –

  1. productively stupid – that is, if we don’t feel stupid it means we’re not really trying
  2. The more comfortable we become with being stupid, the deeper we will wade into the unknown and the more likely we are to make big discoveries

[The author Dr. Martin A. Schwartz distinguishes between being ‘productively stupid’ and ‘relative stupdity’ within the article.]

But perhaps the bigger takeaway for me was this –

How could I possibly frame the questions that would lead to significant discoveries; design and interpret an experiment so that the conclusions were absolutely convincing; foresee difficulties and see ways around them, or, failing that, solve them when they occurred?

This question has to be very common in the minds of students who are new to the PhD program and trying to find the appropriate topic to research on.  It has to be somewhat similar to my job as a Product Manager trying to find an area of the product to improve. What has been done, what has not been done, is somebody already working on this, who do i talk to, what if i have ‘stupid question’, so on and so forth. More importantly, formulate a hypothesis, determine if its really going to be useful and then sell it.

The question on my mind is – Are we really doing anything via appropriate tools and solution to help address these real work flow issues for researchers. Are we really facilitating the discovery of knowledge? Or are we merely repositories that people come and rummage through in the hopes of finding some nuggets of information?

Please read The importance of stupidity in scientific research — Schwartz 121 11: 1771 — Journal of Cell Science.

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The Fourth Paradigm: Data-Intensive Scientific Discovery – Microsoft Research

Very interesting read.  Currently reading the essay – The impact of workflow tools on data-centric research and Text in data-centric world.

In The Fourth Paradigm: Data-Intensive Scientific Discovery, the collection of essays expands on the vision of pioneering computer scientist Jim Gray for a new, fourth paradigm of discovery based on data-intensive science and offers insights into how it can be fully realized.

via The Fourth Paradigm: Data-Intensive Scientific Discovery – Microsoft Research.

New product strategies for publishing companies

Love this presentation from Judy Sims… Very nicely summarized at the end of her post and i’ve quoted below. There are specific themes I’ve take the liberty of highlighting below that traditional publishers need to pay attention to –

The economics of media have shifted. Scarcity and abundance have flipped. This has caused hyperdeflation in media value and the end of the blockbuster era. Hyperdeflation can be countered by creating snowballs. The old media blockbuster economy was built on exclusion. The new snowball economy will be built by being open to aggregators, micro-platforms and re-constructors and capitalizing on economies of distribution, coordination and production.

This part i really like

In media 2.0 there are 3 sources of value creation.

Revelation – what’s good. (My comment: includes anything that helps our users get what they want – links from competitors, blogs; anything relevant to users – we should provide it.)

Aggregation – bring elegant organization to the huge amount of data I’m exposed to and

Plasticity – let me get my hands on your content to see how I can add my own value to it. (My comment: i.e. via API, etc)

This new economy requires radically different product strategies: letting the outside in, curation rather than ownership, becoming a part of an ecosystem, moving from mass to vertical content and viewing the site as a service instead of a product.

via The New Economics of Media and thestar.com – SimsBlog.

Social Media for Scientists: Video Resources for Life Science Researchers

Social media phenomenon is truly taking off. You are clearly seeing this today with the Iran election protests coverage.

If you are a researcher today, you need to be connected with the rise of this form of publishing via Twitter, FriendFeed, YouTube, TED.com, Jove.com (Journal of Visualized Experiments), SciVee.tv, etc.

Now clearly information is going to be dispersed across various different websites and services catering to a niche area of research. Traditional publishers need to recognize this trend, support it and get into the business of being the curator of all this information.

Also check this out (post linked to below)

there are an increasing number of video sites and resources for scientists. They range from visualized experiments, to reviews of current research and events, to wacky and fun ‘kitchen science’

via San Diego Biotechnology Network: Biotech Events, Jobs, News, Companies, Directory, Blog, & Calendar » Blog Archive » Social Media for Scientists: Video Resources for Life Science Researchers.