Over my head
What's the last sentence mean? It was obviously supposed to be something witty.
Science publishers' efforts to have the research community sup the Web 2.0 Kool-Aid have failed, and scientists have given a resounding thumbs down to a gamut of crowd-tapping initiatives, showgoers at SXSW heard on Saturday. A panel of science web publishers said scientists had consistently shunned wikis, tagging, and social …
There are thousands of scientists using wikis within CSIRO.
Or, to find examples closer to El Reg, try Googling
Scientists are refusing to PAY for wiki's etc. Guess the vendors haven't noticed people can actually get the job done using the open source products ;-)
The World-Wide Web was invented by scientists to share information, so claiming scientists aren't interested in using the web is a bit silly. I think the impression that we don't comes from he fact that we don't use MySpace, YouTube, WikePedia or such commercial sites, but rather arrange our own non-commercial and often very specialized forums.
The slice of the population that likes playing with Web 2.0 gizmos is still pretty small, and it just doesn't intersect much with those doing research. When Web 2.0 applications get to the point of really doing something useful for scientists with reasonable efficiency (we're trying to develop such a thing...) maybe they will do it. I can't see a scientist using existing wiki type tools to annotate and link protein references any more than my grandmother getting her photos on flickr.
Life science researchers also shun LaTeX for MS Word, have never heard of Firefox, and in at least one instance I'm aware of, are still using Zip disks and sneakernet to move their files around the lab, and do so quite happily. Many life scientists(which is the population the article is talking about) are also quite suspicious of any statistical treatment of data more advanced than standard deviation, think microarrays are a fad that'll soon pass with no lasting importance, and extol the virtues of using CsCl to purify DNA.
Their behavior isn't a comment on Web2.0. Most grew up in an era when having an IT person on the team wasn't even a concept. Most software running our instrumentation was written in Visual Basic by the weird brother of one of the employees at the company and only runs under NT. Every tried to do something with the standard tool used by most of my colleagues, Reference Manager? The UI is from windows 3.1, and has probably stayed that way because focus group members raise hell every time a button gets moved.
Seriously, though, Connotea is a fantastic tool, and one that people are starting to pick up on more rapidly. The Digg clone, DissectMedicine is less used, and the "MySpace for Scientists", Nature Network, is expanding to more areas. Nature blogs about it here: http://blogs.nature.com/wp/nascent/2006/04/web_20_in_science.html
Here's the list of the initiatives, which this article fails to mention: http://www.nature.com/launchpad/index.html
Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2019