Some people say that for-profit journals do not currently serve our community well.
Some even think they cannot do so.
Others think they are doing a fine job as is (I don't know any such people but
surely they must exist).
I am not
going to weigh in on this issue for now.
However, I have a Manifesto
: a list of actions that we as individuals
to make the academic world a better place.
I truly believe that when people see this list they will agree that
everyone else should follow it.
We academics publish papers so they can be read.
We want anyone in the world to be able to read our papers.
We do not expect any
money in exchange.
Here is what we can all do to facilitate this, not just for our
papers but for everyone's papers.
Whenever you publish a paper in a conference or journal,
post it on your website AND on some appropriate archive.
You would think this is standard practice by now, but alas,
it is not.
If you give a talk on a paper then post the slides and if possible
a video of the talk, along
with the paper, on your website.
On the archives perhaps post a link to the slides and video.
If you have old papers that are not available on line
(it is common go to a website and see only papers past,
say, 1995, are online) then get them scanned in
(some schools do this for you) and put them on your website.
Do not be humble. That is, do not think
Nobody cares about that old paper. Somebody might.
If you goto a website and it has a link to a paper,
but the link does not work, then email the website owner.
Do not be shy.
I have done this with some of the best people
in our field and they have been grateful.
When you write a paper make sure that all of the bibliography entries
include links to where you can get to the paper for free.
If there is no such place, and you can access the paper yourself for free,
then download it, put it in a file in your own directory,
and have your bibliography point there.
If you gather up papers in an area for your own use, then you may
want to make a website out of them.
I have done this with the Erdos Distance Problem, Private Information Retrieval,
Constructive lower bounds on Ramsey Numbers, Applications of Ramsey Theory,
and of course VDW Theorem stuff.
(I understand that it can be a pain in the neck
to maintain such sites.)
If you get a contract to write a book make sure they allow you to
post it free online.
Blown to Bits,
by Abelson, Ledeen, and Lewis is available this way.
Petkovsek, Wilf, and Zeilberger.
(I understand that if you are writing an undergrad textbook and expect to
make real money on it then you may not want to do this.)
Posted By GASARCH to Computational Complexity
at 9/30/2009 11:04:00 AM