APS E-PRINT WORKSHOP

Los Alamos, New Mexico
October 14-15, 1994

Introduction

The APS E-Print Workshop was held in Los Alamos, New Mexico on 14-15 October 1994. The workshop focused on the role of The American Physical Society in the operation of electronic-print archives, sometimes referred to as "e-print," for the dissemination of physics manuscripts in advance of their being peer reviewed or published.

One of the Society's major goals has been to move its scholarly publications away from print and toward electronic production and dissemination. This goal has become obtainable given the latest technological advancements for disseminating scientific information. Our current situation provides both physicists and the Society an opportunity to join forces to support and improve scholarly communication in physics.

The e-print archives, pioneered by Paul Ginsparg at Los Alamos, are revolutionizing the circulation of preprints, and are making the dissemination of information quicker and more efficient. The American Physical Society has followed the e-print archive phenomenon with great interest.

The objectives of the meeting were the following:

  • Discuss a general strategy, for physics to deal with e-print archives
  • Develop a society-wide strategy for e-print archives; discuss a possible plan for the initiation of e-print archive collaborations with Divisions and Topical Groups including details for setting them up, financial support, management, etc.
  • Develop a model for tracking papers from their initiation to ultimate disposition
  • Examine the copyright and general intellectual property issues related to e-print archives
  • Address the role played by the traditional peer-refereeing scientific publishing process in the electronic media

Workshop Papers

  1. Reorganization of the APS Journals for the Era of Electronic Communication (PDF)
    Michael E. Peskin
    Abstract: Electronic preprint distribution has fundamentally changed the role of scientific journals by providing immediate, widespread access to new scientific results. The APS journals should respond to this change as an opportunity to change their mission. In this note, I propose a new organization for the APS journals which would incorporate an electronic preprint archive, and which would allow the print journals to more effectively aid physicists in their use of scientific information.
  2. TeX, hypertext and the WWW: HyperTeX (PDF)
    Arthur Smith
    Abstract: The past year has seen a revolution in the processes of internet-based information navigation and retrieval with the advent of easy-to-use graphical browsers (in particular Mosaic) based on the World-Wide-Web (WWW). The revolution is a result of two components - first the browsers allow a near-uniform (point-and-click or other method) access to documents in almost any format (interpreted according to local .mailcap files) and from almost any internet-based source, accessed as regular files or via ftp, gopher, http or one of many other possible methods, and along with this the Universal Resource Locator (URL) mechanism provides a surprisingly easy and uniform way to specify the location of any document on the net. Second, for certain classes of documents (html files, or gopher text files) embedded URL's or other addresses are understood to refer to other, external, documents which can be followed according to the interests of the person viewing the document, producing an interconnected web of documents.
  3. Integrated Information Management in Physics (PDF)
    Eberhard R. Hilf
    Abstract: a report of activities in Germany is given and some arguments how the future development could be. In Germany the Physics, Information Science and Mathematics Societies are picking the thread jointly and hopefully in close collaboration with their international partners. It is argued, that since we do not know where the future will go, intensive discussions and innovative experiments of trying different ways have t o be done. The past system has had some advantages: truely international, interdisciplinary standards for publication and refereeing. This should not get lost, thus the experiments we propose should be the same way: international and with different fields.
  4. Forgotten Majorities in E-Print (PDF Only)
    John Wilkins
    Abstract: I want very briefly to consider three groups who may be forgotten in distributing preprints electronically - experimentalists, those less well supported, and young scientists.

Complementary Papers

  1. Tragic loss or good riddance? The impending demise of traditional scholarly journals
    Andrew M. Odlyzko
    This paper is scheduled to appear in International Journal of Human-Computer Studies (formerly International Journal of Man-Machine Studies). A condensed version is to appear in Notices of the American Mathematical Society, January 1995.
    Copyright A.M. Odlyzko, 1994.
  2. First Steps towards Electronic Research Communication
    Paul Ginsparg
  3. Text of message posted to sci.math.research (slightly edited)
    Richard S. Palais
  4. Consequences of e-publication in theoretical physics
    Frank Quinn

Transcript Of Talks

OCTOBER 14, 1994 OCTOBER 15, 1994 CURRENT THINKING PANEL

Overview by Moderator: Bob Kelly (APS)

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTIES ISSUES

Overview by Moderator: Maria Lebron (APS)

TRACKING OF PAPERS

Overview by Moderator: Peggy Judd (AIP)

  • Bob Austin (Princeton University)
  • John Light (Journal of Chemical Physics)
  • Bert TePaske-King (Mathematical Reviews)
  • Michael Keller (Stanford University)
PEER-REVIEW

Overview by Moderator: Ben Bederson (APS)

SOCIETY AND PHYSICS-WIDE STRATEGY

Overview by Moderator: Michael Turner (Fermi National Laboratory)

  • Sam M. Austin (Michigan State University, PRC)
  • Michael Peskin (SLAC)
  • Paul Mende (Brown University)
  • Alan Singleton (Institute of Physics Publishing)
  • Harry Lustig (Treasurer, APS)
  • Eberhard Hilf (Carl von Ossietzky Universitaet Oldenburg)

Closing Remarks from Ben Bederson and Bob Kelly

Post-Meeting

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