Posts by Bart Janssen

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  • Hard News: Some reprehensible bullshit, in reply to Russell Brown,

    the HACK Cheryl Howie

    fixed for you

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3488 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Park Life, in reply to Sacha,

    How many Aucklanders own those?

    pfft I do - they are shite but good enuff for my skill level :). And they were dirt cheap second hand.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3488 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Park Life, in reply to BenWilson,

    Personally I think it would be kind of cool to have the golfers weave in and out of the areas that are used for other activities.

    Until someone loses an eye.

    Sure it might be a complicated puzzle to solve, but if it could be solved then it would be kind of cool. Bear in mind that no playing field is perfectly safe. Also bear in mind that Chamberlain is not a tournament class golf course so some compromises in the course are possible.

    I'm sure you can come up with a couple of hundred reasons to disagree with me but I still think the idea would be cool. At the very least it would be nice to have a golf course where golfers are not completely segregated from the plebs.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3488 posts Report Reply

  • Hard News: Park Life,

    Just out of curiosity, would it be impossible to integrate the playing fields within the golf course? Yes that would mean some fences to protect people from slices and hooks. But the separation of the golf area from the rest of the public space seems to make the whole area feel exclusive (even if it isn't).

    Personally I think it would be kind of cool to have the golfers weave in and out of the areas that are used for other activities.

    As an aside for a few years a mate and I used to regularly bowl on down to Chamberlain at about 4pm each Friday to play for half price.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3488 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Market failure in the research world, in reply to BenWilson,

    I and almost all my colleagues have rather large egos in some sense, or we wouldn’t be doing research at all.

    I’ll trust you on whether that is actually so, but have to ask, do you think it’s a good thing that it is so?

    It's part of the selection process. Science, by its very nature, involves constant failure. Good labs are critical environments, not nasty, and not personal, but critical of ideas and methods. Most PhDs involve periods of hard tedious work, frequently resulting in results that are unpublishable.

    For better or worse (and I have somewhat mixed feelings about it) you don't get through a PhD and continue in research without a fairly large slice of self-belief and ego.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3488 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Market failure in the research world, in reply to BenWilson,

    You could publish directly onto the internet at no more cost than the effort of setting up the site.

    Sadly that isn't true. My employer, a CRI, has very specific policies about staff web sites. It's a matter some considerable annoyance to me that my colleagues and collaborators in Universities have personal web pages hosted by the university that describe them and their work. Whereas my employer is uncomfortable with such pages - sigh.

    Also you are forgetting about who pays for the work, no funding agency would accept a self-published web page as an outcome from their grant money and if that was my only outcome I could kiss goodbye any future funding. It simply would not be acceptable.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3488 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Market failure in the research world, in reply to Mark C. Wilson,

    It is perhaps field-dependent

    Very much so. The "hard sciences" are way ahead of us in that respect.

    I don't begrudge some of the fee because it costs money to have could copy editors and good admin staff at a journal. But some journals are milking it.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3488 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Market failure in the research world, in reply to BenWilson,

    and you can’t just publish without permission if you don’t own the research.

    It's not quite about permission. We very very very rarely get told we can't publish.

    But when we do publish we have a responsibility to all the authors to publish in the place that is best for all the author's careers.

    It's one thing for me to say to hell with the commercial journals I'll publish in Frontiers anyway.

    It's quite another for me to make that decision for an early career scientist who is on the paper as well and the technician and my collaborators.

    It shouldn't affect our careers where we publish (only what we publish) but it does because the bean counters only know what the numbers (like impact factor) tell them.

    Also cheap is a relative term, generally it costs around $3000 for us to publish in an open access journal!

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3488 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Market failure in the research world, in reply to BenWilson,

    Yes. It’s an extreme form of objective alienation, considering how smart the victims are, and how much influence they can wield, and even just considering their own personal finances.

    But we don't control our research finances at all. The Universities and CRIs in NZ and most research institutes worldwide have been conquered by the managers.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3488 posts Report Reply

  • Speaker: Market failure in the research world,

    I am a huge supporter of open access journals. But I'd point out they aren't free. There is almost always a "page charge" even for internet-only journals to cover admin costs. That charge isn't paid by the libraries but by the researcher = tax payer.

    I'm also aware that while you may dismiss the prestige part of publishing in Nature or Science, the reality for most scientists is prestige/recognition is a big part of the reward for doing the job.

    I'm not whinging (this time) about how little recognition scientists get in the "real world", but getting a paper into one of the top journals is a huge buzz. In a career that is punctuated more by failure than success of any kind. You can't dismiss that effect.

    In 2012 we published in Current Biology, one of the better journals, after being bounced after a week at Nature and after being bounced after review by Science. I'm proud of those things. Yes proud. Nature bounces most papers within 24 hours. Science sends only a fraction of the papers it receives out for review. And Current Biology (our next choice) is a damn good journal.

    That pride is important to my ability to carry on when my institute freezes our budgets again. Sure that's simply my ego, I know that, but it is real.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 3488 posts Report Reply

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