Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Cites & Insights 14:5 (May 2014) now available

The May 2014 Cites & Insights (14:5) is now available for downloading.

You'll find it at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i5.pdf for the 34-page print-oriented two-column version

or at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i5on.pdf for the 65-page 6x9 online/tablet-oriented single-column version. The issue includes two essays:

Intersections: Ethics and Access 2: The So-Called Sting (pp. 1-20)

John Bohannon wrote a news article in Science that either shows that many open access journals with APC charges have sloppy (or no) peer review...or shows almost nothing at all. This story discusses the article itself, offers a number of responses to it--and then adds something I don't believe you'll find anywhere else: A journal-by-journal test of whether the journals involved would pass a naive three-minute sniff test as to whether they were plausible targets for article submissions without lots of additional checking. Is this really a problem involving a majority of hundreds of journals--or maybe one involving 27% (that is, 17) of 62 journals? Read the story; make up your own mind.

Libraries Future Libraries: A Roundup (pp. 21-34)

Pretty much what the title suggests--not a sequel to a nineteen-year-old book I coauthored, but a roundup of some thoughts from other folks.

A note on formatting

I believe I've solved the "emphasis added" problem--that bolded material within quoted passages should now actually appear bolded. In the process, I've also cut the download size (and presumably time) considerably, especially for the print-oriented issue. I've retroactively done the same for all 2014 issues; let me know if you see problems.

Saturday, March 01, 2014

Cites & INsights April 2014 available

The April 2014 issue of Cites & Insights (volume 14, issue 4, whole # 172) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i4.pdf

The print-oriented two-column edition is 22 pages.

Those reading online or on a tablet may prefer the 6x9" single-column version, which is 41 pages long, at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i4on.pdf

This issue includes two essays:

Intersections: Ethics and Access 1: The Sad Case of Jeffrey Beall (pp. 1-14)

The saga of Jeffrey Beall going from self-appointed investigator into "predatory" open access publishers and journals (and, notably, only OA journals) to ludicrous analyst of serials pricing and the reasons for OA--and beyond that to denouncing OA and its advocates? It's an odd story, and my version includes some really good ideas on avoiding sketchy journals (mostly from a notoriously worthwhile pseudonymous feathered library type) without buying into vigilantism.

The Middle: Forecasts and Futurism (pp. 14-22)

After skipping a year, it's time for another set of forecasts (short-term predictions) and futurism (long-term "predictions"), including some thoughts on the whole trendspotting game.
Does that number in the title of the first essay suggest something? Why, yes, it does--probably two things, one of them almost certain to appear in the May 2014 issue, and involving another "B."

Saturday, February 01, 2014

Cites & Insights 14:3 (March 2014) available

Breaking the silence of project preparation to announce: Cites & Insights 14:3 (March 2014) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i3.pdf

That's a 32-page two-column PDF optimized for printing. If you're planning to read it online or on an e-device, I suggest the 61-page single-column 6" x 9" PDF optimized for viewing (and much smaller as a download) at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i3on.pdf

The issue includes:

The Front: Toward 15 and 200: Your Help Wanted pp. 1-3

Cites & Insights is in its 14th year and has passed Issue 170. I'm asking for help to encourage keeping it up to at least 15 and 200--and offering perks for donors.

Media: Thinking about Magazines pp. 3-24

Think print magazines are disappearing--or, worse, are just miscellaneous collections of articles? Think again. If you want a sense of the continuing importance of print magazines, maybe four words will suffice: World Wildlife and STAND--the new glossy print magazines from, respectively, World Wildlife Fund and the ACLU, both of which recognize the special power of a good magazine. This roundup includes some numbers and some perspectives. (No, Cites & Insights isn't a magazine; it's closer to a newsletter. And while a few journals are also magazines--Science, for example--most journals aren't magazines and most magazines aren't journals.)

The Back pp. 25-32

A baker's dozen of minisnarks (or, if you prefer, a dozen with lagniappe) on sound, prices, TED, silliness and casual (or ignorant) tech-sexism at "the newspaper of record."

Wednesday, January 01, 2014

Cites & Insights February 2014 (14:2) available

The February 2014 issue of Cites & Insights (volume 14, number 2) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i2.pdf. The two-column print-oriented (and optimized for printing) PDF is 42 pages long. If you're planning to read it on a tablet or online, you may prefer the 80-page 6" x 9" single-column version (not optimized for printing) at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i2on.pdf This issue completes the book-length discussion of ebook issues. It contains:

Perspective: E and P: What I Ignored pp. 1-2

Possible motivations behind some comments and stances on pbooks and ebooks

Intersections: It Seems Like the Obvious Case: Ebooks as Textbooks pp. 2-15

For more than a decade I've assumed that textbooks represented the obvious billion-dollar (well, multi-billion-dollar) market for ebooks. It turns out not to be that easy.

Libraries: Ebooks and Libraries pp. 15-42

This discussion leaves out way too much and probably grossly oversimplifies the situation, but I do discuss some items having to do with the philosophical and general issues, problems, publishers and vendors, Kindles and libraries, and Douglas County and friends.

Sunday, December 01, 2013

Cites & Insights 14.1 (January 2014) available

Now entering its fourteenth (!) year, the January 2014 Cites & Insights is now available at http://citesandinsights.info/civ14i1.pdf

The issue is 32 pages long. The single-column "online version" is 62 pages long.

This issue includes:

The Front (p. 1)

A few notes on reaching the fourteenth year.

Words: Books, E and P (pp. 1-25)

Books and the media in which they appear--and note the "E and P" rather than "E vs. P," although some of the items are distinctly "versus."

Media: 50 Movie Gunslinger Classics, Part 1

"Gunslingers" doesn't mean Westerns, although some of these are. It appears to mean that somebody in the movie has a gun. It's an...odd...set.

Friday, November 01, 2013

Cites & Insights 13:12 (December 2013) available

Cites & Insights 13:12 (December 2013) is now available for download at http://citesandinsights.info/civ13i12.pdf.

The issue is 34 pages long.

The single-column 6" x 9" "online version," optimized for faster download and online or tablet reading, is also available--http://citesandinsights.info/civ13i12on.pdf

The issue contains one essay:

Words: The Ebook Marketplace, Part 2 pp. 1-34

More on the last few years in the ebook marketplace, this time focusing on ebook pricing, ebook and ereader sales, software, the past and future, (intentional) humor, rights--not so much DRM as ebook readers' rights, and a few miscellaneous pieces.

If you're waiting for "ebooks and pbooks" (note and, not versus)...that's coming in January 2014.
This completes Volume 13. The indices will only be available as part of the print version of Volume 13, which will be announced when it's ready, probably some time within the next couple of weeks.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

Cites & Insights 13:11 (November 2013) available

The November 2013 Cites & Insights (13:11) is now available for downloading at http://citesandinsights.info/civ13i11.pdf

The issue is 36 pages long. The "online version," designed for reading online or on a tablet or large-screen ereader, is 69 pages long.

This issue includes:

The Front: Erehwon Community Library: A $4 to $1 Example pp. 1-4

An example of what a library could derive from $4 to $1: Public Library Benefits and Budgets, using a mythical "median library" that's the average of the two public libraries with precisely median service population. (This essay is very similar to a September 27, 2013 post at Walt at Random, except that the post misspells the library name.)

Words: The Ebook Marketplace pp. 4-30

It's been a while since I've looked at a range of ebook-related issues. This roundup covers up to four years--and it's really Part 1 (of at least two and maybe three or four parts). It includes items related to ebook devices, competition, collusion, DRM, stupidity, ebooks going beyond narrative text, "what's a book?" and miscellany. (Part 2 will include sales, pricing, software, history and future--and probably lots more.)

The Back pp. 30-36

Sixteen mostly-snarky little essays on a range of topics--including one that's really not snarky: What if a stereo magazine had three successive reviews of three different speaker systems, found all of them excellent--and the three were priced (per pair) at $106,800, $29,800 and $159.99 respectively? (Yes, that's a decimal point in the third price.) Oh, and what if the second and third were designed by the same designer--who added his signature to the nameplate of the $159.99 version?

Reverting to form

For the last few issues, announcements didn't link directly to the PDF(s). Instead, announcements linked to the C&I home page, which now has the "Pay What You Wish" section just above the current issue table of contents and links. I was hoping this speed bump--adding one click to the process of getting to the issue--would encourage a few more people to contribute. I think it worked. A little bit. For a while. But it's now one day shy of three months since there's been a donation. So, at least for now, I'm reverting to the direct links. Of course, I'd still very much appreciate donations. Of course, donations would still encourage me to keep going with C&I. Oh, and it's still the case that donating $50 or more will get you a PDF version of Your Library Is... if you want it.