Posts Tagged ‘American Chemical Society’

Open Access journal publishing debates – the elephant in the room?

Sunday, November 4th, 2018

For perhaps ten years now, the future of scientific publishing has been hotly debated. The traditional models are often thought to be badly broken, although convergence to a consensus of what a better model should be is not apparently close. But to my mind, much of this debate seems to miss one important point, how to publish data.


Molecule of the year (month/week)?

Monday, December 12th, 2016

Chemical and engineering news (C&EN) is asking people to vote for their molecule of the year from six highlighted candidates. This reminded me of the history of internet-based “molecules of the moment“. It is thought that the concept originated in December 1995 here at Imperial and in January 1996 at Bristol University by Paul May and we were joined by Karl Harrison at Oxford shortly thereafter. Quite a few more such sites followed this concept, differentiated by their time intervals of weeks, months or years. The genre is well suited for internet display because of plugins or “helpers” such as Rasmol, Chime, Jmol and now JSmol which allow the three dimensions of molecular structures to be explored by the reader. Here I discuss a second candidate from the C&EN list; a ferrocene-based Ferris wheel[1],[2] (DOI for 3D model: 10.5517/CCDC.CSD.CC1JPKYQ) originating from research carried out at Imperial by Tim Albrecht, Nick Long and colleagues.



  1. M.S. Inkpen, S. Scheerer, M. Linseis, A.J.P. White, R.F. Winter, T. Albrecht, and N.J. Long, "Oligomeric ferrocene rings", Nature Chemistry, vol. 8, pp. 825-830, 2016.

(Hyper)activating the chemistry journal.

Monday, September 7th, 2009

The science journal is generally acknowledged as first appearing around 1665 with the Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society in London and (simultaneously) the French Academy of Sciences in Paris. By the turn of the millennium, around 10,000 science and medical journals were estimated to exist. By then, the Web had been around for a decade, and most journals had responded to this new medium by re-inventing themselves for it. For most part, they adopted a format which emulated paper (Acrobat), with a few embellishments (such as making the text fully searchable) and then used the Web to deliver this new reformulation of the journal. Otherwise, Robert Hooke would have easily recognized the medium he helped found in the 17th century.