Academic Startup Publons Gives Peer Reviewers Credit For Their Work

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The traditional anonymous peer review process used in academic publishing is meant to ensure objectivity, but it means reviewers give up their time for very little reward. The lack of transparency is also vulnerable to exploitation, which can lead to flawed (if not fraudulent) research making it into prestigious publications. Publons, a platform for post-publication peer review, wants to address these problems by becoming “the Stack Overflow of academic research.”

The Wellington, New Zealand-based startup’s goal is to help scholars advance their careers by building a portfolio of article critiques and, in turn, help journals find quality reviewers. Founded by Andrew Preston and Daniel Johnston, Publons recently participated in accelerator program Lightning Lab and has received $350,000 New Zealand dollars (about $291,000 USD) in seed funding. The site plans to monetize by providing value-added services for academic publishers and hopes to have 20 major international journals signed up within a year.

Publons (the term refers to the smallest unit of information that can be published in a peer-reviewed journal) currently has 11,000 authors and about 3,000 publications in its database. Three hundred users, most of whom are based in the U.S., Europe and China, actively contribute reviews.

Other sites that want to change the achingly slow and cloistered traditional peer review process include academic networking site Academia.edu, which recently raised a $11.1 million Series B round, ResearchGate and flgshare.

Preston, who received his PhD in condensed matter physics from Victoria University in 2010 and did postdoctoral research in x-ray spectroscopy at Boston University, says Publons plan to differentiate by turning peer reviewers into “first-class academic citizens.”

Publons’ founders don’t expect to dramatically overhaul the deeply entrenched academic publishing process, but they want to give peer reviewers an open platform where they can publish critiques of scholarly articles and engage in discussions with other academics. The best reviews on Publons are assigned a digital object identifier (DOI), the standard for citing and indexing academic publications, so authors can include them on curriculum vitaes.

Preston’s favorite reviews on Publons include this critique of a paper called “Single molecule detection using surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS)” by PhD candidate Walter Somerville, which was assigned a DOI, and an augmentation added by computer graphics researcher Eugene d’Eon to one of his papers after finding a new result.

He says both reflect Publons’ mission to improve understanding of the original article and speed up academia’s research-feedback loop.

“Once something is published it is considered static, but we should be able to have a dialogue around the published paper,” says Preston.

AUDIO: N Korea prisoner: ‘I had to bury my son’

North Korean prison camp survivor Kim Young Soon remembers her time in the notorious Yodok prison camp in North Korea.

‘The Voice’: Blake Shelton Accuses Adam Levine Of Sabotaging His Chair (VIDEO)

Wedding singer Grey got the attention of three coaches on “The Voice,” turning the chairs of Blake Shelton, Adam Levine, and Cee Lo Green. But something strange happened at the end of his performance. Anybody who’d been waiting to see one of the coaches’ chairs malfunction probably got a kick out of watching Blake turn back around unexpectedly to face away from the stagehttp://blog.zap2it.com/frominsidethebox/2013/10/the-voice-tamara-chauniece-takes-ceelo-green-to-church.html.

As Christina Aguilera’s chair turned to face the stage, Blake’s chair abruptly turned him back to the audience. As you might have expected, he immediately blamed Adam. “You did this! You did this to me!” he shouted.

Adam totally owned it, rubbing his hands together like a cartoon villain. “Did I?” he asked with devilish glee.

Hollywood Life’s Jordan Clifford came up with an explanation, suggesting that Blake was so blown away by the audition that he spun his chair all the way around. Blake tried to use the mishap to his advantage, saying that he turned a full 360 degrees to get Grey, but it didn’t work. Grey chose to join Team Adam.

Tuesday night’s episode is a “Best of the Blinds,” but then its time to move on to the Battle Rounds. “The Voice” continues on Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on NBC.

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‘Castle’: Rick Comes Up With Long-Distance Relationship Solution, But Is It Too Late? (VIDEO)

Rick came up with a plan that would have helped make his long-distance relationship with Beckett work on “Castle.” He found an apartment in Washington, D.C. and would split his time between there and New York City. It was a great plan, until something out of his control changed everything.

McCord confronted Beckett. “They knew it was you that tipped off the press,” she told her. “A part of me really admires you for the choice that you made, maybe because I’d like to think there was a time I would’ve done it. But the people we answer to feel that way.”

And so, because of her clear sense of justice — which doesn’t work as well in the political landscape of D.C. — Beckett was abruptly fired. She did it to protect an innocent woman from being pressured into spying for the CIA, but that sort of thing is rather frowned upon in the nation’s capitol.

This surprising development left Buddy TV’s Morgan Glennon with plenty of questions. “Thankfully, moving Beckett back to New York at least makes sense from a character perspective,” she wrote. “It’ll be interesting to see what happens with Beckett now that she’s unemployed. Will she be able to immediately resume her job in New York and rescue her desk from the disgustingly messy Sully? Or will the road back be more complicated?”

TVLine’s Matt Webb Mitovich figured this was inevitable. “It ended for the most noble of reasons, Kate wanting justice in all its forms, not only for the guilty but the innocent, too,” he wrote. “(Did Kate subconsciously clumsily tattle to the press on purpose? … It’ll be interesting, though, to see how she lives with this ‘failure,’ if she even deems it such.)”

Find out Beckett’s next move as “Castle” continues on Mondays at 10 p.m. ET on ABC.

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Connie Britton Suggests Kyle Chandler Is Holding Up The ‘Friday Night Lights’ Movie (VIDEO)

When Connie Britton dropped by the “Watch What Happens: Live” clubhouse, Andy Cohen couldn’t help himself. The self-professed “Friday Night Lights” superfan asked her a ton of questions about the show, including what is going on with the long-rumored movie.

“I love the idea! I think it’d be a great idea. But my former husband–,” Britton said, trailing off.

“He thinks you did it already?” Cohen asked. Britton admitted that Chandler had a point. She went on to say, “We would only do it if it was going to be a great movie.”

Back in August, Britton confirmed that she had received a script for the project, so is she indicating that Coach Eric Taylor himself, Kyle Chandler, is holding up the project? Or is the scrip not a “great movie,” perhaps.

One viewer wanted to know if it was great kissing Chandler on the show. Britton then talked about how embarrassed Chandler would get before any romantic scenes. “Here’s a little known fact,” she said. “In the second episode ever they wrote us a big sex scene that opened the episode, and he was so uncomfortable with it, and it was so terrible, that it was cut out of the show and we never had a sex scene again … in the history of ‘Friday Night Lights.’”

Chandler, Britton and a bunch of the show’s cast reunited over the summer at the ATX Television Festival, so maybe that time together will inspire them all to work toward making that “Friday Night Lights” move into a reality.

For now, fans can watch Connie Britton every week on “Nashville,” Wednesday nights at 10 p.m. ET on ABC. “Watch What Happens: Live” airs Sunday through Thursday at 11 p.m. ET on Bravo.

TV Replay scours the vast television landscape to find the most interesting, amusing, and, on a good day, amazing moments, and delivers them right to your browser.

Tom Hanks Reveals Startling Health News On ‘Late Show With David Letterman (VIDEO)

While Tom Hanks was visiting “Late Show,” he revealed some big news about his health. According to Hanks, he’d been dealing with high blood pressure numbers since he was 36 years old. He said that his doctor told him, “You’ve graduated. You’ve got type 2 diabetes, young man.”

“My doctor said, ‘Look, if you can weigh as much as you weighed in high school, you will essentially be completely healthy and not have type 2 diabetes,'” Hanks said. “And I said to her, ‘Well, I’m gonna have type 2 diabetes.’”

Hanks shared this news after David Letterman commented on his weight — he was looking noticeably trimmer. While Hanks is in better shape, and thinner than he’s been, he said there’s no way he could get back down to his high school weight. He joked that he was 98 pounds back then.

Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes, and Hanks isn’t the only celebrity who has it. Patti LaBelle, Drew Carey, Sherri Shepherd and Paula Deen all have been diagnosed with it.

Meanwhile, Hanks isn’t letting it slow him down any. He’s getting early Oscar buzz for his latest project. He plays a modern-day pirate in the film “Captain Phillips,” which is in theaters Friday.

Tune in to “Late Show with David Letterman” every weeknight at 11:35 p.m. ET on CBS.

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‘The Voice’ Blind Auditions Draw To A Close, Michael Lynch Inspires Duet With Christina Aguilera (VIDEO)

It was the final night of blind auditions on “The Voice,” which meant the coaches were finalizing their teams. One contestant who certainly demanded their attention was 27-year-old Michael Lynch. He blew them away by tackling Enrique Iglesias’, “Bailamos.”

The bigger surprise may have come when the chairs turned around. Michael is Irish. He just learned Spanish in school and fell so in love with the language that he chose to sing in Spanish. Then, he took it a step further by choosing to working with Christina Aguilera. What he didn’t now was how quickly she wanted to start working with him.

Inspired by his performance, Christina jumped out of her seat. “Give me a mic! Let’s, let’s do a little salsa,” she shouted before breaking into an impromptu duet with the latest member of Team Christina.

Over at Hollywood Life, Jordan Clifford called that moment a great “sneak peek” at what’s to come as the season progresses. Buddy TV’s Esther Gim had a feeling Christina would want him, calling them a “match made in heaven.”

Tuesday night’s episode is a “Best of the Blinds,” but then its time to move on to the Battle Rounds. “The Voice” continues on Mondays and Tuesdays at 8 p.m. ET on NBC.

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‘Bones’: Shocking Twist Changes Everything For The Cast (VIDEO)

The close of one chapter ushered in an era of unlimited possibilities on “Bones.” It was the confrontation fans had been waiting a long time to see. Pelant was back and this time he revealed that he was in love with Brennan. She tracked him down in his lair, but she wasn’t alone. She thought she was — which wasn’t her smartest move — but Booth figured out where Pelant was as well.

After some grandstanding that fell on deaf ears, Booth shot Pelant. And just like that, their long nightmare was over. Booth was able to reveal to Brennan that Pelant was the reason he turned down her proposal and refused to talk about it.

“If I ask you to marry me, will you say yes?” Booth asked Brennan.

“If I say yes, will we get married?” she responded.

“Yes,” he said, and truly nothing should get in the way this time.

“All’s right in the world,” wrote Zap2It’s Laurel Brown. “Let’s hope this one sticks! We’ve been waiting a long time.” TV Fanatic’s Miranda Wicker was loving it, too. “Pelant dying was the only possible end for the character,” she wrote. “He had to go. For good. And now he’s gone. Now Booth and Brennan can plan a wedding (and live mostly happily ever after).”

“Bones” can move into its next chapter now. The story continues on Mondays at 8 p.m. ET on Fox.

TV Replay scours the vast television landscape to find the most interesting, amusing, and, on a good day, amazing moments, and delivers them right to your browser.