How ‘Google Science’ could transform academic publishing

Google is allegedly working on a free, open access platform for the research, collaboration and publishing of peer-reviewed scientific journals.

At least, that is apparently what one individual wants us to believe.

Wired.co.uk is in possession of a document, sent anonymously, detailing how “Google Science” would bring together existing services such as Google Docs, Google Plus, YouTube and more to create a platform that challenges the paid-for model of scientific publishing and provides academics with an opportunity to connect with each other more efficiently. The document was allegedly given to a handful of academics in Berlin this week by Google executives — so says the email sent to this establishment and a number of other sources.

A name appears in one of the screenshots purporting to exhibit Google Science in action — Dieter Krachtus — and Wired.co.uk contacted him to find out if the document is in fact false and mocked up. (There’s also a smiley winky face somewhere in the presentation, and a typo, so we were not totally sold…) Krachtus has since responded to deny sending Wired.co.uk the document, but reveals that the presentation did in fact belong to a 2011 “Google Science project” he prepared for “a couple of friends and acquaintances at Google”. The document, is exactly the same — bar a date change. 

A Google spokesperson is currently looking into the validity of a burgeoning “Google Science” project, but so far has been unable to find anything and has no comment. Krachtus believes the whole thing is a prank being played on him. 

Read on

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