O'Really?

October 19, 2007

The Webolution Will Be Televised

The American poet and songwriter Gil Scott-Heron once famously remarked that The Revolution Will Not Be Televised [1]. Science has undergone its own quiet revolution since the invention of the Web back in 1990. This has slowly but surely changed scientific communication, not just a Revolution but a “Webolution” [2] if you like. The recent addition of television to the Web means that, to paraphrase Gil, the Webolution will be televised. You can now watch some of the webolution in science, thanks the likes of JOVE (The Journal Of Visualised Experiments), SciVee.TV, Google Video and YouTube. What are these sites like and is their scientific and technical content any good?

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April 13, 2007

Collaboration, collaboration, collaboration!

Geldof Blair collaborationWhat should your three main priorities be as a Scientist? Collaboration, collaboration, collaboration. Quentin Vicens and Phil Bourne have just published Ten Simple Rules for a Successful Collaboration [1] to help you do just that, as part of a continuing series [2,3,4,5].

Tony Bliar once said “Ask me my three main priorities for government, and I tell you: education, education, education.” In Science, its not so much about education as collaboration, collaboration, collaboration. The advice in Ten Simple Rules is all useful stuff, but what caught my eye is the fact that collaboration is on the rise, at least according to the number of co-authors on papers published in PNAS. The average number of co-authors has risen from 3.9 in 1981 to 8.4 in 2001. So before you publish or perish, it seems likely that you’ll also need to collaborate or commiserate… less laboratory, more collaboratory!

Photo credit Garret Keogh

References

  1. Quentin Vicens and Phillip Bourne (2007) Ten Simple Rules for a Successful Collaboration PLOS Computational Biology
  2. Phillip Bourne (2006) Ten Simple Rules for Getting Published PLOS Computational Biology
  3. Philip Bourne and Iddo Friedberg (2006) Ten Simple Rules for Selecting a Postdoctoral Position PLOS Computational Biology
  4. Phillip Bourne and Leo Chalupa (2006) Ten Simple Rules for Getting Grants PLOS Computational Biology
  5. Phillip Bourne and Alon Korngreen (2006) Ten Simple Rules for Reviewers PLOS Computational Biology
  6. This post originally published on nodalpoint with comments

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November 28, 2006

Postdoc Hell: Should I Stay Or Should I Go?

Postdoc Hell? "Please dispose thoughtfully of your used postdocs"Sometimes, being a PostDoctoral researcher is a tough life. Thankfully, help is at hand in Philip Bourne and Iddo Friedberg‘s guide Ten Simple Rules for Selecting a Post-Doctoral Position published in PLOS Computational Biology. This article is part of a series of editorials [1,2,3] which discuss various aspects of the weird and wonderful world of scientific research. They are worth reading if you’re at an early stage of your career, although you may not always agree with all the advice given. For example, the article advises PostDocs to:

Think very carefully before extending your graduate work into a postdoc in the same laboratory where you are now – to some professionals this raises a red flag when they look at your resume. Almost never does it maximise your gain of knowledge and experience, but that can be offset by rapid and important publications.

Do any experienced postdocs (or post-postdocs) out there have an opinions on the importance of moving labs after a PhD? What if you’re already in a great lab and like where you work? To what extent is it important to move, just to get new experience and skills? Or as The Clash once put it [4]:

♫ If I go there will be trouble, if I stay it will be double.
So come on and let me know, should I cool it or should I blow? ♫

References

  1. Phillip Bourne (2006) Ten Simple Rules for Getting Published PLOS Computational Biology
  2. Phillip Bourne and Leo Chalupa (2006) Ten Simple Rules for Getting Grants PLOS Computational Biology
  3. Phillip Bourne and Alon Korngreen (2006) Ten Simple Rules for Reviewers PLOS Computational Biology
  4. Joe Strummer and Mick Jones (1981) Should I stay or should I go?
  5. Jawahar Swaminathan (2006) A ten step plan for PostDoc training nodalpoint.org
  6. this post originally on nodalpoint with comments
  7. Postdoc Hell, a collection of articles describing the plight of the postdoctoral researcher on citeulike


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This work is licensed under a
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update: Mysteriously, Nature jobs used the Clash as a theme to their careers supplement, two weeks after this post was published. See How to ask yourself questions about major career decisions and Should I Stay Or Should I Go?. Coincidence? I wonder if they read nodalpoint?

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