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The Media

What Does It Actually Cost To Publish a Scientific Paper? 166

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the one-trillion-dollars dept.
ananyo writes "Nature has published an investigation into the real costs of publishing research after delving into the secretive, murky world of science publishing. Few publishers (open access or otherwise-including Nature Publishing Group) would reveal their profit margins, but they've pieced together a picture of how much it really costs to publish a paper by talking to analysts and insiders. Quoting from the piece: '"The costs of research publishing can be much lower than people think," agrees Peter Binfield, co-founder of one of the newest open-access journals, PeerJ, and formerly a publisher at PLoS. But publishers of subscription journals insist that such views are misguided — born of a failure to appreciate the value they add to the papers they publish, and to the research community as a whole. They say that their commercial operations are in fact quite efficient, so that if a switch to open-access publishing led scientists to drive down fees by choosing cheaper journals, it would undermine important values such as editorial quality.' There's also a comment piece by three open access advocates setting out what they think needs to happen next to push forward the movement as well as a piece arguing that 'Objections to the Creative Commons attribution license are straw men raised by parties who want open access to be as closed as possible.'"
Security

When Your Data Absolutely, Positively has to be Destroyed (Video) 295

Posted by Roblimo
from the it's-all-about-the-magnetism dept.
Here's a corporate motto for you: "Destroying data since 1959." Timothy ran into a company called Garner Products (which doesn't use that motto as far as we know), at a security conference. While most exhibitors were busily preserving or encrypting data one way or another, Garner was not only destroying data but delighting in it. And yes, they've really been doing this since 1959; they started out degaussing broadcast cartridges so broadcasters could re-use them without worrying about old cue tones creeping into new recordings. Now, you might ask, "Instead of spending $9,000 or more to render hard drives useless, couldn't you just use a $24 sledge hammer? And have the fun of destroying something physical as a free bonus?" Yes, you could. You'd get healthy exercise as well, and if you only wanted to destroy the data on the hard drives, so what? New drives are cheap these days. But some government agencies and financial institutions require degaussing before the physical destruction (and Garner has machines that do physical destruction, too -- which is how they deal with SSDs). Garner Products President Ron Stofan says in the interview that their destruction process is more certain than shooting a hard drive with a .45. But neither he nor Tim demonstrated a shooting vs. degaussing test for us, so we remain skeptical.

Comment: Re:Bad news for ya, kid (Score 1) 605

by zapyon (#42914467) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Is the Bar Being Lowered At Universities?

(Yes, I realize I used the passive voice there, but English is the only language I know where language teachers frown on the passive voice.)

This is probably because you don't know language teachers of other languages who frown on using passive voice in their respective languages. I, for one, know that teachers of the German language equally frown upon (excessive) use of passive voice.

Comment: This is not about software quality. (Score 5, Informative) 480

by zapyon (#42006741) Attached to: German City Says OpenOffice Shortcomings Are Forcing It Back To Microsoft
Other cities like Munich (LibreOffice) and Leipzig (OpenOffice) are doing just fine with the same family of office software. Without further information it is moot to guess if a) the Freiburg admins were not willing or capable of installing and configuring OpenOffice in a way that was satisfying to users or b) the users were unwilling to use the software (something different? something new? no way!) or c) some city managers decided to rather put some money in Microsoft's purse for any number of reasons (similar things happened to other public offices in Germany before).
Robotics

+ - OpenGertie - Open Hardware relative of Pixar's Luxo Junior->

Submitted by zapyon
zapyon (575974) writes "Fabian Gerlinghaus has constructed a robotic desklamp that includes a camera and a microphone as a "flexible and low-cost resource for conducting research into cognitive products and human-robot interaction." As it is open hardware all plans are available and you may make your own if you have a 3D printer available."
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Thus spake the master programmer: "When a program is being tested, it is too late to make design changes." -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"

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