Fashion advice from a true intellectual

Whatever you think about the year 2017, it's safe to say it was not the year of intellectuals. So it's comforting to know that there are still a few intellectuals out there.

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5 Science-Based (Adult) Coloring Books

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you’ve probably noticed that coloring is “in” again. You can find adult coloring books at nearly every book and gift shop. Skeptics might be wondering what all the fuss is about… after all, didn’t we leave this hobby behind in elementary school for a reason?

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The Shortest Papers Ever Published

This blog post is about short papers. It seems out of place writing a long introduction.

If you ever wondered about the shortest papers ever published, or you just want to take the unique opportunity to read several papers in full within one minute, this post is for you.

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Walking through a Digital Memorial: the #pdftribute PDFs

Aaron Swartz was a vocal proponent of a free and open Internet and a staunch believer in open access. His Guerilla Open Access Manifesto, written in 2008, is just as powerful and relevant to the world of academic publishing today as it was 6 years ago.

A little over a year ago, the Internet began mourning the loss of this well-loved entrepreneur and pioneer. Tech-savvy academics were shocked by Aaron’s death; some were upset at the handling of his legal case while others called on universities to respond by doubling down on open access to the scientific literature. Meanwhile, the news media were left struggling to explain just what JSTOR was and why Aaron was potentially facing years in prison for downloading a bunch of PDFs.

And then, academics joined together worldwide in a small act of defiant tribute.

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The beauty of scientific papers - Design trends of the past 350 years

Reading blogs about scientific publishing can be a sobering experience. Peer review is broken; publishers are evil; papers are evaluated by the wrong metrics; and the data is probably faked anyway.

The positive moments are too easily forgotten. For one, there is the initial relief when you first submit your paper. Suddenly, your vague ideas or unsolved problems from a year ago have materialized into something substantial, something worth communicating to the world. And of course, there’s the excitement when your paper finally gets accepted for publication.

But this post is about another, more subtle happy moment in the lifecycle of a paper: it’s that email you get, when the production team sends you a PDF and you first see your paper in its typeset form. This the final form with which your work will enter the scientific record. And, it’s beautiful!

We believe that a scientific paper can be a thing of beauty in its own right. Which is why for our inaugural post, I opened the archives and took a closer look at the design trends and beautiful papers from the past 350 years.

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