Category Archives: Publishing

My book is out! The Eleventh Doctor: a critical ramble through Matt Smith’s tenure in Doctor Who

It’s here!

The Eleventh Doctor: a critical ramble through Matt Smith's tenure in Doctor Who by Mike Taylor

My book on the Eleventh Doctor is now out in Kindle editions [amazon.com, amazon.co.uk]! Please, folks, spread the word in any Doctor Who communities that you’re a part of, and on your own blogs!

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How I came to buy the DVD of series 2 of Stewart Lee’s Comedy Vehicle

A true story:

  • My favourite author in the world is C. S. Lewis. I’ve read everything of his that I’ve been able to find, most of it four or five times. I long ago lost count of how many times I’ve read the Narnia books.
  • Long ago (in Internet years) I searched for a C. S. Lewis FAQ, and found one that was written by someone called Andrew Rilstone.
  • I started reading the rest of Rilstone’s web-site (as it then was), then his blog once he started writing in that format. Highly recommended, by the way: full of insight, wit, and a gloriously eclectic mix of high literature and pop-culture.
  • One of the more frequent commenters on Rilstone’s blog was Andrew Hickey, whose blog Sci-Ence! Justice Leak! I also started to read.
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Help the USA into the 21st century (even if you’re not American)

[This is cross-posted from my other blog, Sauropod Vertebra Picture of the Week. I never cross-post: this is, as far as I remember, literally the first time I have done it. But this issue is so important and so urgent that I am making an exception. Please, please: sign the petition, upvote the Reddit and Hacker News submissions, blog about it, tweet about it, tell your friends.]

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Good news! If you want to read research that was funded by the U.S. National Instututes of Health (NIH), you can. Their public access policy means that papers published on their dime become universally accessible in PubMed Central.

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Who needs access? You need access!

If you’re wondering why it’s been so quiet around here recently …

I’ve been working on a new site, which I and two colleagues will be maintaining, and which I think is potentially the most important thing I’ve ever done.  It’s called Who Needs Access? You Need Access!, and you can read it at http://whoneedsaccess.org/

Who needs access?  Kelly Trout, nurse and independent researcher

We have a problem: the majority of the research that our governments fund is not available to most people.  Continue reading

Oppose SOPA, PIPA and the RWA

Today is a big day for the Internet.  Nearly everyone reading this site will be aware of the Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA) and the Protect IP Act (PIPA), two appallingly ill-conceived pieces of legislation under consideration in the US but with profound ramifications for the whole world.  Written at the behest of big copyright holders by people with no understanding of how the Internet works either mechanically or culturally, they would be absolutely disastrous if passed.

In response to this, many high-profile web-sites are demonstrating the results such laws would have by going dark for the day.  They include Reddit and, most importantly, Wikipedia.  (Also, the entire Cheezburger network and many, many others.)  We can only hope that this distributed demonstration results not just in SOPA and PIPA being rejected, but in an emphatic smackdown that makes it impossible for similarly dumb legislation to get mind-space in the future.

But there is another threat also making its way through the US Congress — less publicised but also hugely important.

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Whither publishers?, part 2

Back in February, I was provoked by an article on Eric Hellman’s blog to write a post, Whither Publishers?, on the future of publishers in a digital world.  Today, in a completely different move that is certainly not just a retread, I find myself provoked by a comment on Eric’s blog to write … another post on the future of publishers in a digital world.

What’s worse, it’s almost the same post.  So try not to fall asleep.

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Whither publishers?

I wrote this a few weeks ago as a comment on Eric Hellman’s blog (which by the way is an excellent read).  But when I happened to re-read it today, I realised that the thoughts that comment are significant enough that they probably merit their own post.  Here is it.

Eric wrote in his article:

Although one attendee worried to me about pervasive complacency in the trade publishing industry, Gonzalez’s view is that publishing is an activity fundamentally essential to our culture, and that one way or another, publishers are finding ways to survive and thrive as their focus shifts from a print oriented supply chain to a digital ecosystem.

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