A LETTER FROM THE EDITOR


IEEE Intelligent Systems, September/October 2007, November/December 2007, and January/February 2008, pp. 2–3

monarch butterfly coming out of cocoon

Reinventing Academic Publishing

by Jim Hendler

Although quoting yourself is generally considered tacky, I’ve been involved in several recent activities and discussions I’d like to share with you. These largely arose from “Publishing on the Semantic Web,” a column that Tim Berners-Lee and I coauthored in Nature back in 2001. In that column, one of a series of opinion pieces about academic publishing’s future, we discussed the Semantic Web’s potential impact. We ended with this somewhat brash statement:

The semantic web will provide unifying underlying technologies to allow these concepts to be progressively linked into a universal web of knowledge, and will therefore help to break down the walls erected by lack of communication, and allow researchers to find and understand products from other scientific disciplines. The very notion of a journal of medicine separate from a journal of bioinformatics, separate from the writings of physicists, chemists, psychologists and even kindergarten teachers, will someday become as out of date as the print journal is becoming to our graduate students.

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