who’s wto

Monday, February 7th, 2011

What happened in the nineteen century to tangible properties is happening now to intangibles. Take as a first example a recent change in Saudi Arabian law brought about by the World Trade Organization. As the historian Carla Hesse has noted, in traditional Islamic practice, authors did not own the ideas expressed in their books: “A […]

the market thing

Friday, June 13th, 2008

“Oil is too important to leave to market forces”, this is the title of an article published yesterday in Timesonline. Its writer suggests that the governments should get involved to fix the problem of high oil prices. It brings me to the “free market” moral: it should be free as long as the greedy can […]

Guaranteed public access to publicly-funded research results

Saturday, January 27th, 2007

You may sign the Petition for guaranteed public access to publicly-funded research results. It is addressed to the European Commission (you have a choice to sign as an individual or on behalf of your organization). Tell your friends about it: this (the access to the research you financed) is one of the services you paid […]

open-access, comments on the TRS list of issues

Wednesday, December 14th, 2005

TRS asks (by the way, TRS, please publish your statements in a reusable format, so I can quote your text accurately; printing it on paper, then scanning it and publishing the pdf containing the scan is much more expensive: I waste time retyping your text, somebody’s wasting time by manipulating such non-semantic objects; the modern […]

open-access, there you go

Wednesday, December 14th, 2005

Just happy that other people too have deep concerns about the open-access issue: Fellows of The Royal Society reacted promptly, with an open letter. (The reader would be able to put things in context by perusing also the links therein, one of which is to the RCUK position statement on research outputs, june 2005.) TRS’s […]


Saturday, December 3rd, 2005

Some organization (The Royal Society, henceforth TRS) has published a position paper on open-access and it’s nagging me. TRS starts with a slow introduction aiming to put the reader in a kind of open-access state for the ideas that follow (by suggesting they are in the open-access camp, but with some nuances): TRS states that […]

semantic libraries

Wednesday, October 5th, 2005

Why semantic libraries 1.Context The scientific research and its use by the public is strongly affected by the way authors, librarians and publishers interact. The fast evolution of the digital environment brought this interaction in a modern crisis: the scientists use today non-semantic software tools for authoring their articles (tools designed around certain types of […]

publicly funded copyright

Saturday, July 30th, 2005

If the public of a country funds some research or educational activity which results in an article, book or report, that should be accessible unconditionally to that public. In other words, the results of any kind of activity that is at least partially funded from public money, should be accessible to the public, right? There’s […]