Saturday, April 18, 2009

Will blogs revolutionize how science is done?

The latest issue of Nature Physics has an editorial which is worth thinking about. It is followed by a Commentary by Michael Nielsen. Both claim that due to new on-line tools such as blogs and wikis a major revolution is about to occur in the way science is done. Although, I remain to be convinced the changes will be as dramatic, as significant, and as fast as claimed, there are some important points I am in sympathy with.
Indeed this why I started this blog!

* Scientists are too secretive about sharing new ideas and data.

* Science will advance faster the more informal and unstructured collaboration occurs.

* We could all benefit from "picking the brains" of great scientific minds. Blogs, wiki's, etc. provide a highly efficient means of this happening.

* There are significant amounts of insights, experiences, data, questions, that never "see the light of day" because they are not suitable for conventional
publications but need to be disseminated.

1 comment:

  1. I only wish there were more condensed matter blogs. The blog is a good format -- informal and open. Students and other interested readers can follow along and even get some (nearly) real-time answers to questions. The way scientists communicate is already changing. The Internet could become the never-ending conference (without the layovers and smelly hotel rooms). It's only a matter of time before we start twittering our results.