Monday, May 21, 2007

Creating a new publication model

I like to gripe about our current conference/journal system, and how ungainly a method it is for publishing and disseminating quality work. Not surprisingly, other areas of computer science appear to have similar issues as well.

Hal Daume, my colleage at the U. of U., has sparked off a rather interesting discussion with his post on NLPers about the need for a new open-access journal for NLP research. The original motivation for his post is partly NLP-specific, but the evolving discussion over at his wiki provides a closeup view of the process of designing a new publication model that sits somewhere between traditional journals and traditional conference.

It's too early to tell what will come of this, but if their model gains some traction, it might provide a good exemplar for future reform in other disciplines in computer science.


  1. No clue what problems you are talking about. Any piece of crap I submit get published sooner or later.

    Oh, you mean this is the problem...

  2. On a related note, I wish for web 2.0 versions of arXiv/citeseer, where writers can post their articles. Readers can view articles, post comments, reviews, and ratings ...

  3. What do you think of then ?

  4. There some open access journals that seem to have got all the details right such as JAIR. JAIR has a status as a non-profit and receives donations to support it. Wiuhout such status (which requires audits and such) there is no way to get support for minor costs except through 'in kind' donations and those don't always cover what you want covered.

    A natural source of support might be libraries happy not to pay exhorbitant journal prices. Might they not cover a small nominal amount for a subscription? Unfortunately, because the pure open access model gives away the access both to indivuduals and libraries there is no way to get libraries to pay anything to support journals whose existence is in their best interests.


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