Tuesday, October 27, 2015

New exhibit: RCA’s Fabulous 45s

By Alex Magoun, IEEE History Center
Whether you grew up downloading MP3s, loading CDs, playing cassettes, or stacking records, you'll want to check out "RCA's Fabulous 45s," the colorful new exhibit on the Library's first floor this fall.  An expanded version of one staged at the David Sarnoff Library in Princeton over ten years ago, it's based on a productive collaboration between Alex Magoun of the IEEE History Center here at Stevens, and Phil Vourtsis, retired engineer and the world's leading collector of 45-rpm record changers.

Vourtsis's wonderful book on the subject contains Magoun's dissertation chapter on the 45-rpm record, a topic he pursued because of his record collecting and DJ activities.  The subject is ideal for Stevens because the innovation of the 45 record and changer system involved mechanical, electrical, and chemical engineers as well as marketing, music, and executive managers.  The story shows how innovation is shaped by market demand, inventive choices, unexpected events, competition from established and new alternatives, corporate promotion, consumer response, and popular culture.  It also involves a practically infinite array of music, a tiny sample of which from the 1940s to the 2000s is also displayed through records and picture sleeves.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Part 5: OA Spotlight: Public Library of Science (PLOS)

by Vicky Ludas Orlofsky

To mark Open Access Week 2015, this week you’ll see a series of posts about different aspects of the Open Access movement in publishing.

PLOS, established in 2001, has emerged as a strong proponent of OA publishing for scholarly material through its range of gold OA journals (all published under the CC BY license; see more about Creative Commons licenses in part 2). While PLOS ONE is their “megajournal,” in that they do not limit themselves to one discipline but instead publish whatever scholarly work they feel is important and should be published, PLOS has a number of more discipline-specific journals:

All PLOS journals are peer-reviewed.

To publish in a PLOS journal, authors must pay an Article Processing Charge (APC), which range from $1,495 for PLOS ONE to $2,900 for PLOS Biology and PLOS Medicine. They do offer assistance for scholars from developing countries as well as authors who show financial need.

PLOS has been a big proponent of altmetrics, which track the impact of a work through means beyond citations. Every article published in a PLOS journal includes Article-Level Metrics, which shows how the article has been Viewed (on PLOS and PubMed, in which all PLOS articles are deposited), Cited (as pulled from Google Scholar), Saved (on Mendeley and CiteYouLike), and Discussed (Wikipedia, Twitter, Facebook, and others). For an example of Article-Level Metrics, see Walking Like Dinosaurs: Chickens with Artificial Tails Provide Clues about Non-Avian Theropod Locomotion*, one of PLOS ONE’s most viewed articles of all time.

Finally, as mentioned in part 2, PLOS and SPARC (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition) have created the How Open Is It? Open Access Spectrum guide by which you can determine how open a particular journal is based on its author and reader policies:


Questions? Comments? Contact Vicky Ludas Orlofsky.

* Grossi B, Iriarte-Díaz J, Larach O, Canals M, & Vásquez RA. (2014). Walking like dinosaurs: Chickens with artificial tails provide clues about non-avian theropod locomotion. PLoS ONE 9(2): e88458. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0088458

Part 4: OA Spotlight: Engineering Research

by Vicky Ludas Orlofsky

To mark Open Access Week 2015, this week you’ll see a series of posts about different aspects of the Open Access movement in publishing.

There is a range of material available open access in Engineering. This includes journals and ebooks as well as reference sites, government information, and even online courses.

Journals and Articles
The Directory of Open Access Journals includes more than 10,000 international OA journals in a variety of academic subjects. You can browse by subject or search for journal or article title keywords. The Engineering (general) subject includes 211 journals from all over the world, including many of the journals listed below.

A number of prominent traditional academic publishers have also started OA engineering journals, all thoroughly peer-reviewed. IEEE has seven gold OA journals, including IEEE Journal of the Electron Devices Society, an OA megajournal (IEEE Access) and more than 100 hybrid OA journals, all found at IEEE Open.

The Nature Publishing Group publishes the multidisciplinary journal Scientific Reports (narrowed to Engineering). A list of all NPG OA and hybrid journals can be found here.

Cogent OA from Taylor & Francis publishes Cogent Engineering.

Elsevier publishes a number of OA and hybrid journals, including many in engineering, including Ain Shams Engineering Journal, Case Studies in Construction Materials, and Engineering Science and Technology, an International Journal, among many others. Find the full list here.

Springer publishes several OA journals in engineering, such as Advanced Modeling and Simulation in Engineering Sciences, Friction, and Mechanics of Advanced Materials and Modern Processes, among others. See the full list here.

Wiley Open Access includes journals like Energy Science & Engineering and others; see the full list here (unfortunately not searchable by discipline).

MDPI, or the Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute, is a dedicated OA publisher with a long list of simply named engineering journals, including Biosensors, Micromachines, and Water. Find the full list here.

You can find 549 ebooks in engineering at InTech: Engineering. InTech lets you narrow down to the most cited books (as cited in Web of Science), most cited chapters (Web of Science and Google Scholar), and most downloaded chapters.

Reference websites
iCrank is a collection of mechanical design engineering resources like apps for thread designers, screw data, and bolt torque charts, links for patent searches, materials information, and jobs listings, and vendors of use.

eFunda stands for “engineering fundamentals” and includes information on materials, design, formulas, processes, unit conversions, math, and much more.

Government information
USA.gov is the portal to all available government information. Always worth doing a search here to see what turns up. For more specifical science results, try Science.gov, which is essentially USA.gov narrowed to federally funded science research.

The National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics includes "data on research and development, the science and engineering workforce, the condition and progress of STEM education, and U.S. competitiveness in science, engineering, technology, and R&D.”

The National Institute of Standards and Technology Data Gateway provides access to NIST’s scientific and technical data.

Finally, check out the Online Engineering Courses from Open Culture.

Open access means making information more available to all who can benefit from it. The journals, ebooks, and wide variety of other information listed here can be of use to you whether or not you belong to an institution like Stevens, now and in the future.

More information can be found at the Library’s Open Access Research Guide.

Questions? Comments? Contact Vicky Ludas Orlofsky.

Next: a look at a prominent OA publisher.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Part 3: Open Access and Grant Funders

by Vicky Ludas Orlofsky

To mark Open Access Week 2015, this week you’ll see a series of posts about different aspects of the Open Access movement in publishing.

Many funders of academic research, both federal and nonprofit, have become very interested in increasing access to the results of the research they fund. Here I will look at examples of federally-funded granting agencies as well as independent nonprofits. There is a difference in both the terminology of government-funded and independently funded work, and in the accessibility to that work. Federal agencies require public access to research, which is not always the same as open access. Public access requires that the public be able to read it, but not reuse or modify it as the open access movement advocates. What this usually works out to is that articles are published in traditional journals (unless the author chooses a gold OA journal) and then deposited in a green OA repository for read-only access following an embargo (if applicable). OA archiving is the most common form of required accessibility for both nonprofit and federal grant agencies, while publishing in OA journals is occasionally encouraged but not required.

One way to find out what your prospective funder may require is the SHERPA/JULIET research funders' open access policies database, which includes international and national grant funders and can be searched by name or country.

Federally funded research
The National Institutes of Health began mandating public access to the publications resulting from the research they funded in 2008. This led to the expansion of PubMed, a citation and sometimes full-text database of biomedical and life sciences articles. Articles mandated to be included in PubMed are often subject to an embargo imposed by the publishers of those articles, meaning that while the citation will appear, there can be a delay of 6 months or longer in accessing the full-text of the article.

Following the example set by the NIH, in 2013, the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy issued the executive memorandum “Increasing Access to the Results of Federally Funded Scientific Research” (PDF) stating that all government agencies with research budgets of $100 million or more must develop a plan to make the results of that research (article and data) available to the public. This directive was reinforced by HR 3547, the Consolidated Appropriations Act (section 527, 2014; refers to Departments of HHS and Education). The agencies have since started submitting and implementing their public access plans. Columbia University Libraries has a great chart listing the agencies and the progress made thus far:   Public access mandates for federally funded research: implementation plans.

One example is the the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), wherein, as of Oct. 1, 2015, all peer-reviewed publications funded partly or totally by NASA, either the author’s final version or the published version, must be made available on the NASA archive within PubMed. Archiving must occur when the article is accepted for publication, and the article can be embargoed for no longer than 12 months. “Publications that contain material governed by personal privacy, export control, proprietary restrictions or national security are excluded” (SHERPA/JULIET: NASA). Articles must include metadata, and the metadata must include a link to the published article. As for data, a Data Management Plan is required in each grant application, and “digital unclassified scientific research data” must be deposited in a repository and the NASA Archives. See the full NASA implementation plan here.

Nonprofit funders
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation made headlines in 2014 when they announced their adoption of an OA policy. The OA policy took effect in January 2015 and required that publications be deposited in findable repositories, published CC BY 4.0 or equivalent, made open and accessible immediately (though a two-year transition period allows for publisher embargoes until Jan. 1, 2017, at which point no embargo will be accepted), and that the data made open and immediately accessible as well. The foundation would any associated fees, meaning that the Article-Processing Charge and any other fees are now written into the grant budget.

Other large nonprofits that require or encourage OA deposit are the Howard Hughes Medical Institute and the MacArthur Foundation. For a full list, see SHERPA/JULIET (sorted by country).

As a result of the worldwide OA movement, it has become imperative that prospective grantees understand the requirements for accessibility to publications and data that their awards may entail. The federal agencies and nonprofit organizations that fund research have begun to see the benefits of making that research available to a much wider audience, which likely includes potential future grantees yet to come.

More information can be found at the Library’s Open Access Research Guide.

Questions? Comments? Contact Vicky Ludas Orlofsky.

Next: where to find OA engineering research online.


Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Part 2: How Open Access Works

by Vicky Ludas Orlofsky

To mark Open Access Week 2015, this week you’ll see a series of posts about different aspects of the Open Access movement in publishing. This is Part 2.

Creators of articles, books, and other works that have been copyrighted can also have their work designated open access by using a Creative Commons (CC) license that works alongside copyright. Creative Commons is a nonprofit organization that has worked to create internationally acceptable licenses with the express purpose of making creative works available for people around the world to use, reuse, and repurpose. Traditional copyright restricts to the author the rights of modification, distribution, reproduction, performance, and display. CC licenses allow for creators to adapt these rights to their purposes: “A CC license lets you decide which rights you’d like to keep, and it clearly conveys to those using your work how they’re permitted to use it without asking you in advance” (Six Licenses for Sharing Your Work, Creative Commons).

Licenses are determined based on how open the creator wants their work to be:

Screen Shot 2015-10-19 at 11.31.09 AM.png
Caption: Six Licenses for Sharing Your Work, Creative Commons, in the public domain

Creative Commons was founded in 2001, and the first set of licenses was released in 2002. Version 4.0 was published in 2013 and remains the most current. See CC’s Frequently Asked Questions for much more about the history of the project, how CC licenses work, and how you as a creator can use one.

CC licenses are how journals make their articles available open access whether they are traditional (all articles are subscription-based but pre- or post-prints can be archived in a repository), hybrid OA (some articles are published traditionally and remain under subscription, and some are eventually made OA, also available through the subscription), or gold OA (all articles published OA).

A handy guide to judging the openness of a journal is the How Open Is It? Open Access Spectrum guide from PLOS (Public Library of Science; for more, see part 5) and SPARC (Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition), which incorporates CC licenses in the Reuse Rights category:

As an example of how publishers co-opt open access with CC licenses, here is the OA policy of Elsevier, one of the largest academic journal publishers in the world:

  • Green self-archiving: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0 (attribution, non-commercial, no derivatives), must follow sharing guidelines
  • Gold/hybrid journals: CC BY 4.0 (attribution) or CC BY-NC-ND 4.0, depending on the journal

In all cases, the published work must be attributed. (Source: Elsevier: Open Access Licenses; Elsevier: Copyright)

The most restrictive CC license is CC BY-NC-ND, which basically allows the user to read the work for free but not reuse it, modify it, or distribute it commercially. The least restrictive license is CC BY, which requires the user attribute the work but otherwise reuse, modify, or distribute at will. Beyond CC BY is the public domain, a feature of international copyright law in which works that have fallen out of copyright protection (or are declared by their creator to have never been in copyright protection) are made available to all for free to do whatever they want to with them. CC0 CC calls CC0, their public domain mark, a “tool” rather than a license, because it indicates “no rights reserved.”
Works that are covered by CC licenses can be found through the CC Search. This includes images, media, music, and other material, some of which is in the public domain. Open access articles can be found through the following search engines, as well as on their journal homepages:

  • BASE Search
    The Bielefeld Academic Search Engine, from Bielefeld University Library (Germany), searches though more than 71 million open access documents in more than 3,000 repositories across the globe.
  • HighWire Search
    Aids in "the digital dissemination of more than 3,000 journals, books, reference works, and proceedings," from Stanford University.
  • ROAD Directory
    Directory of OA Scholarly Resources. An international collection of 11,000 OA journals, conference proceedings, and other scholarly works that have been assigned an ISSN (International Standard Serial Number) from UNESCO.
  • OpenAIREplus
    The Open Access Infrastructure for Research in Europe project is an EU-based initiative to collect in one place "the entire Open Access scientific production of the European Research Area." They now provide access to more than 11.5 million publications from almost 6,000 repositories in EU member countries.

More information can be found at the Library’s Open Access Research Guide.

Questions? Comments? Contact Vicky Ludas Orlofsky.

Next: federal and nonprofit grant funders who support OA.