When we published Open Doors and Open Minds, we promised a companion piece that discusses in detail some of the legal considerations that university administrators and university general counsels may wish to consider in adopting a public access policy. I’m happy to say that this is now available. This excellent companion piece, providing a thorough overview and careful analysis of legal issues related to public access policies, is written by Simon Frankel and Shannon Nestor, who are lawyers at Covington & Burling, a prominent Washington D.C. law firm. It is available here. I wish to thank them for their contribution of this wonderful resource for public access champions, and we look forward to distributing this widely.
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Astronomers are known for being relatively open with their data, and as a community, they have fairly well-established norms with respect to release of data, sharing of telescope resources, etc. Nevertheless, this does not make them immune from the occasional dispute or controversy over data sharing practices, particularly with very novel or valuable data. The New York Times reports on one of those rare occasions when disputes over data sharing norms do arise in this community–in this case over the existence of extra-terrestrial planets.
The past few weeks have been exceptionally busy here at Science Commons, and there’s quite a bit to report on. Here’s a digest of some of the biggest news over the past few months …
Video from the first ever Sage Commons Congress is now available for viewing and download on the Sage Web site. The speakers range from network thinkers and biologists, to tools builders, disease research foundations who champion Open Access, to those looking to cure their own disease. I highly encourage you to check out these high power talks when you get a chance.
SC’s own Jonathan Rees explores the genre of “data paper”. For those of you interested in data publication and persistence, download the working paper from our Reading Room and help us continue the discussion.
Public comment period for our patent tools is still open. We invite you to join the discussion at our public wiki. There you can read more about the tools – the Research Non-Assertion Pledge and the Public Patent License, catch up on topics of interest and join the discussion list to contribute your thoughts and suggestions.
GlaxoSmithKline recently dedicated more than 13,000 compounds known to be active against malaria to the public domain using CC0 – our public domain waiver. Read more about that incredible contribution here, or visit Wilbanks’ blog on Science Blogs for more history on our open data work here at Creative Commons. It’s a must read.
And finally, Creative Commons recently launched its Catalyst Campaign. Help ignite openness and innovation today. For more information on the campaign and to help us reach our goal, visit http://creativecommons.org/catalyst.
We’re happy to announce that we’re launching the public comment and discussion period for our new patent tools: the Research Non-Assertion Pledge and the Public Patent License. We invite you to join the discussion at our public wiki. There you can read about these tools, catch up on hot topics of interest to the community, or join our public discussion list to contribute your thoughts and suggestions.
These tools were conceived as part of our collaboration with The GreenXchange (GX), a network of companies interested in making publicly available unpatented know-how and patented inventions that have the potential to promote innovation, sustainability, resource management, and other socially responsible uses of ideas and inventions. The Research Non-Assertion Pledge and Public Patent License are just pieces of the underlying infrastructure for how to share and transform that kind of knowledge—just like CC licenses have become part of the infrastructure for exchanging and transforming creative works. While these tools were initially conceived in collaboration with GX, we envision them as generic tools maintained by CC for anyone to use, and we hope they will prove to be useful in other projects in the future as well. That’s why it’s important to us to get comprehensive comments and feedback from the community and the public.
I want to also thank numerous people who have been generous with their time, resources, and advice. In particular, Manny Schecter and Sandy Block at IBM spent great amounts of their time sharing with us their experiences with IBM’s Non-Assertion and the Eco-Patent Commons. Best Buy, Mountain Equipment Co-op, Nike, and Yahoo!, in addition to their advice and support, gave us generous grants to fund our work on the infrastructure and tools. Salesforce, nGenera, 2Degrees, and other participants of GX gave generously of their services and technical expertise. The law firm of Morrison Foerster generously provided us with pro bono legal services and invaluable advice. Michael Mattioli from Ropes & Gray also volunteered to help us tackle some tough patent issues. I also particularly thank our Creative Commons international affiliates for their invaluable aid and for bringing global perspectives to this effort, as well as many others too numerous to list here who provided comments, feedback, and advice along the way. Without such an involved and generous community, this project would never have gotten off the ground. While we have drawn on the contributions of many, we have to be clear that we are ultimately responsible for our choices in the design of the tools and nothing here should be construed as representing the views of these contributors or their endorsement.
We hope that by involving the wider public and community that we will bring in new ideas and perspectives that we might not have otherwise considered. That’s an essential part of our process for releasing new legal tools. So, we encourage you not only to participate in the discussion, but also to bring this to the attention of your friends, colleagues, and others interested in these issues, whom we might not otherwise reach. Send them this link and ask them to join the discussion list posted on the wiki.
Wonderful news out of the Bradley laboratory at Drexel University. Edition 3 of the Open Notebook Science (ONS) Challenge book is now available, including the raw data files and notebooks. The ONS Solubility Challenge book – a bound version of the ONS Solubility database – was first announced back in December 2009 by Jean-Claude Bradley – Open Notebook Science pioneer, and most recently a featured speaker at the Science Commons Symposium in Seattle.
This is the first edition to include a full archive of the Open Notebook Science Challenge notebook, a “snapshot of the state of all source documents”. For more on the first edition and on the Open Notebook Science Solubility Challenge itself, see Jean-Claude’s previous post on the topic on his blog, UsefulChem.
Kudos to Jean-Claude and his team. Keep up the good work!
The videos from Science Commons Symposium are now live online!
As many of you know, we recently held an event called Science Commons Symposium at the Microsoft campus in Redmond Washington. It was a day full of presentations from leaders in the fields of Open Science, Open Access and Open Data. The conversations that took place during the breaks and the post-event reception were just as stimulating as the presentations. I was thoroughly exhilarated by the exciting ideas and bright, passionate people discussing them.
One topic that was heavily discussed in both the speaker presentations and in the hallway conversations was Panton Principles. The Panton Principles are a set of best practices for open data, and were official launched at the symposium by Cameron Neylon in the opening talk. Cameron Neylon, Peter Murray-Rust and John Wilbanks were all instrumental in crafting the Panton Principles and all three addressed them in their presentations. You can find links to video of the presentations below.
Though John Wilbanks did address the Panton Principles, he did so with the perspective of a bigger picture. John’s keynote summed up the history and the future goals of the Open Science movement. John said that the real goal is generative science and defined generative with a quote from Jonathan Zittrain:
“Generativity is a system’s capacity to produce unanticipated change through unfiltered contributions from broad and varied audiences.”
There are several excellent blog posts by people who attended the symposium.
Jean-Claude Bradley, one of the speakers, provides a personal perspective on the day, a brief summary of the presentations and his presentation slides on his blog Useful Chem.
Another speaker, Antony Williams blogged about how the generative science message in John Wilbanks’ keynote resonated powerfully with him and is very well-aligned with his motivation for ChemSpider. You can read Antony’s post and see his presentation slides on his ChemSpider blog.
There were quite a few science librarians in attendance at the symposium. Alison Aldrich sums up the presentations from a librarian’s point of view on her blog Dragonfly. Leave it to a librarian to provide clear, concise summaries of all the presentations along with links to supplemental information.
If you weren’t able to attend in person – or if you were but just need a refresher on the overwhelming amount of excited ideas that were discussed – you will really appreciate the detailed notes taken by Brian Glanz of the Open Science Foundation. Brian diligently took notes on his pad throughout the day and has posted them in an open blog on the Open Science Foundation website.
The Microsoft Research team was our gracious host. In addition to providing us with a wonderful space for the event, keeping everyone well fed and caffeinated, and giving out copies of the new CC-licensed book The Fourth Paradigm, they did an excellent job of capturing the presentations on video. The video is now live and can be watched online at:
Session 1 Featuring Lisa Green, Lee Dirks, Stewart Tansley & Kris Tolle, Cameron Neylon and Jean-Claude Bradley
Session 2 Featuring Antony Williams and Peter Murray-Rust
Session 3 Featuring Heather Joseph and Stephen Friend
Session 4 Featuring Peter Binfield and John Wilbanks
The videos are a wonderful resource – for those of us who were there as well as the people who were not able to be physically present at the symposium. I know that I will be watching them more than once in the near future. The ideas presented at Science Commons Symposium are among the most important in science; they are the ideas that will shape the future of science.
Last October, Kaitlin joined Jordan Hatcher, Leigh Dodds and Tom Heath to give a four hour tutorial titled “Legal and Social Frameworks for Sharing Data on the Web” at the International Semantic Web Conference (ISWC). The tutorial covered the legal and social issues commonly found in data publishing, using the Linked Data Cloud as a leading example of how copyright restrictions, complex licenses and lack of clarity can quickly exacerbate problems for data sharing efforts.
Wish you could have been there? Me too. Luckily for us, all four of the tutorial leaders are composing their thoughts on data sharing for articles in Nodalities. Kaitlin produced a great piece for this month’s issue called Data Sharing on the Web . Be sure to check it out! The hardcopy version of the February Nodalities is not out yet, but you can read it online here.
Nodalities is licensed under CC-BY-SA — but Kaitlin’s article, per her request, is under CC-BY.
Our Science Commons t-shirt design contest is now open to entrants outside of the US. We realized that while we might not be able to afford to fly someone to Seattle from Australia or Germany, we would be missing out on too much talent if we limited the contest to US residents. The prize will be slightly different and negotiated separately, but all are welcome to submit their designs.
You can read more about the contest here in last week’s post, but a reminder about the quickly approaching deadline. Designs are due by February 12th – less than two weeks away – at 5 pm PST. Image files must be formatted as .jpg .png .ai .psd or .svg An image of the Science Commons logo can be downloaded at our Logo Page. Contest submissions and any questions can be directed to Lisa Green.
So tell all your friends, get those pens to paper and jumpstart your design software. Times a’ tickin.
Puneet Kishor is a Science Commons Fellow, specializing in geospatial issues and open data, and a guest blogger here at Science Commons.
Starting Jan 28, 2010, MichiganView is making available all of its more than 93 Gigabytes of Landsat 5 and 7, and NAIP imagery data in the public domain using the new CC0 Waiver provided by Creative Commons. The MichiganView consortium makes available aerial photography and satellite imagery of Michigan to the public for free over the Web. As part of the AmericaView consortium, MichiganView supports access and use of these imagery collections through education, workforce development, and research. CC0 (pronounced CC-Zero) waives any rights in a dataset, ensuring that all of the dataset is available to anyone without encumbrance of any kind.
More information on CC0 is available here, and the reasoning behind the protocol is described here. Further questions about MichiganView may be directed to Dr. Tyler Erickson, Director, MichiganView at firstname.lastname@example.org and questions about the CC0 waiver may be directed to Puneet Kishor, Science Commons Fellow (Geospatial Data) at email@example.com.
Design a new t-shirt for Science Commons and win a trip to Seattle to attend Science Commons Symposium – Pacific Northwest!January 27th, 2010
Science Commons needs a new t-shirt design. Sure, the “e=mc(shared)” shirts are great – mine gets worn more than any other shirt in the dresser – but after years of having that design, we think it would be nice to have a new one. We are turning to the crowd to find a great new design and giving away a prize to the person with the winning design.
We’re calling on all of the science-minded Commons fans out there – from the design savvy to the slightly more artistic engineers and bench scientists. All are welcome to submit, so why not take a break from the lab and research, and take a stab at t-shirt design? Get geeky. We dare you.
The person with the winning design will win a trip to Seattle and a ticket to attend Science Commons Symposium – Pacific Northwest where the new t-shirt will be officially launched. The symposium is an exhilarating event that you don’t want to miss! It will be a full day of stellar speakers presenting on: data accessibility and sharing, open access publishing, social norms of the scientific community, web-enabled research and other exciting ideas. Click here to check out the speaker list.
Submit your entries via email by Friday February 12th. More details on the rules below.
Prize consists of round trip airfare from a US city to Seattle, two night hotel and a ticket to Science Commons Symposium. If you are from outside of the US and would like to participate, let us know and we can work out a different prize for you. Image files must be formatted as .jpg .png .ai .psd or .svg Entries must be received by Friday February 12th at 5pm PST. An image of the Science Commons logo can be downloaded at our Logo Page Contest submissions and any questions can be directed to Lisa Green.