Science 2.0 Version 3 Product Planning
    By Hank Campbell | July 12th 2010 01:43 AM | 13 comments | Print | E-mail | Track Comments
    The last time we did this, in October 2008,  Science 2.0 Gets A Version 2.0 had a nice ring to it.  Version 3.0 not so much.   But once per decade, whether it needs it or not, we do new features and generally try to make things better without, you know, making it worse.

    So we are going to start discussing some ideas.   An obvious one is to find other 'science 2.0'-ish companies and do things with them.

    Obviously Science 2.0 is more than communication, it is also publication, participation and collaboration, and my thinking was someone ... anyone ... would do a good job on collaboration but I am not sure they have, so if there are ideas on how that could work as part of a bigger framework let me know.    It will be tricky and take a load of bread to capitalize so that may not be reasonable.  The reason none of them have taken off is because people want everything free and in actual tools, that is not possible.

    There are many, many places to publish in peer-review fashion but if we think that needs to be done, that would actually be the easiest so we can discuss it.  Participation is done by companies like FoldIt and Galaxy Zoo and maybe more so we could talk to them about partnerships.

    Those efforts would also happen in parallel so in the meantime I'd like to find a way to get as many ideas as possible on the table so does anyone know of a good way to do that?  Would it be a huge chat online thing, video conferencing with audio?   How do we do product planning and include the community when everyone is remote?  Email and messages seem sort of Science 1.0.



    Gerhard Adam
    It's certainly easy enough to do a Webinar type of activity to get real-time input.  However, it seems that you might want to go with e-mails and a central post someplace to get various ideas put together first.

    Also, keeping in mind time zone differences tends to make real-time web interfaces a bit dicey.
    Email and messages seem sort of Science 1.0.
    Actually pencil and paper probably seem almost prehistoric, but I'll bet everyone uses it when they're trying to get organized.

    Mundus vult decipi
    Can I make a request for an improved search feature, as I've lost count of the number of times I've 'lost' a post I want to reference
    If the idea is to improve collaboration, surely a searchable site/database of posts/users/news/etc, would be most useful, or at the very least better instructions, if any exist, for using the existing search box
    I often have to go outside the site and use google, to find something inside the site

    How would you improve it?   We can search by sitewide keywords (strength/authority) and then by date if that works better.   Then you can go to a user and search just their articles for keywords.   How do you find something in Google you don't find here?
    Gerhard Adam
    As an example, I just did a search for Hank Campbell and got all kinds of irrelevant hits and when I clicked on users, I got no results returned.

    Perhaps I'm doing something wrong, but it's not intuitive.
    Mundus vult decipi
    Well, that was a bug.   But Patrick fixed it.   And that broke something else, but you never noticed because he fixed it right away.   So it should be fixed now.   We hope.
    Bonny Bonobo alias Brat
    Do you have a current bug list somewhere that you can share with your users? Maybe with priorities next to it? Users could add and share information and observations to specific bugs and items and help Patrick fix the bugs. I know there's Patrick's blog about 2.0 and the g(r)eek in us but that's out of date and therefore confusing. I also would like to see improved search facilities. I really like the overall layout and feel of Science 2.0, so I think its important not to lose that atmosphere but definitely there is a need for improved, more intuitive search facilities. A simple improvement that would make a huge difference to me, would be to have the ability to scroll along or down on any list or search result that you're already currently searching and displaying. At the moment you just show for example the top 7 articles or new comments, why can't we scroll down and see the next 7 top articles or comments, like you can click on more for the Science Codex below? Users online at the bottom of the screen just shows several users and then n guests online, why can't we scroll accross to see who else is online? Or if you click on a users profile you see their latest blogs or you can search for more articles by that user and that comes back in a different unscrollable tabloid format, why not just show the latest however many blogs by date by that blogger but have the ability to scroll down to see the next oldest ones? Maybe its just a case of increasing n potential for display from say the current 7 to 14 or 21 in each of these cases, if you're worried about slowing things down too much? The site would look the same but suddenly have way more easy access to information and functionality at the users fingertips. Finally, it would be good to be able to search for the most recent comments by a speciic user again with a list to scroll down. However, maybe that would make things too easy and we wouldn't have to ferret around like we do at present coming across other comments and blogs that we didn't know about, which is half the fun.
    My article about researchers identifying a potential blue green algae cause & L-Serine treatment for Lou Gehrig's ALS, MND, Parkinsons & Alzheimers is at
    Well for starters I just found this article, by searching google for 'Hank Campbell Improving Site Search' - as I couldn't quickly locate it searching your blogs, as I didn't mentally note the title

    Suggestions - not being critical, trying to help - wink

    Alphabetic searches are always useful, and server side includes, to link sections together seem easier...and breadcrumb trails, maybe? [for Patrick Adair, perhaps?]
    Examples of good/easy searchable webpages: Yahoo, Sites LH column, quickview is cool, search assistant ;DMOZ simple layout [note advanced button after search box]
    A site map is useful
    Information Architecture - drop down boxes for search by category/user/keyword/date/etc
    View Top Searches - list
    Search result - relevance to person searching [thanks, Patrick L for the suggestion]
    ....and please move the RSS pop-up which blocks the search window on mouse-overs - ggrr
    embedded google search

    Here's a tip for google searches, type my search where my search is what you're looking for

    Just a starter - see my post at puppy forum


    Sorry guys, I am a late adopter technophobe (not in my lab, but personally) and cannot follow your post Hank. What do you mean by "There are many, many places to publish in peer-review fashion but if we think that needs to be done, that would actually be the easiest"?

    What has peer review to do with the companies? Where are my peers here if I post on microwave assisted synthesis of metal nanoparticles, which I am preparing at the moment? (surely I totally misunderstood something, I know)
    A few suggestions for any version scienceX.0, hope that is not out of place here:

    1) Ensuring that a little editing not un-features a post (maybe needs trial period with brand new bloggers to ensure no inappropriate stuff smuggled in via editing).

    2) Collapsing long comments and comment threads

    3) My posts will be more and more on the interplay between physics and philosophy – but I dread putting them as philosophy, because in fact they are directed at people interested in the exact sciences, but then, they are not pure physics either. The possibility to cross list under up to three or at least two categories would be great (My posts would be often primary subject category: Physics, secondary: Philosophy, third: science education. The article on diphenhydramine for example would be better categorized as philosophy, but I did not dare to do that, since it is obviously pharmaceutical.)

    4) Making the items on the personal start pages easier to overview and search. Now it is visually pleasing with the pictures, and that is very nice as the first view, but there should also be an obvious three or four buttons saying something like (I hope they are not there already and I just did not find them):

    [Sort according to primary subject field (physics, philosophy, etc)]

    [Sort according to date]

    [Sort according to number of comments]

    [Sort according to number of clicks]

    The result of clicking these should be a list with no or much smaller thumbnails, so that one has much more of an overview.

    Bonny Bonobo alias Brat
    Hank, please can you explain the selection criteria for displaying the top articles? Is it based on numbers of hits, comments, views or something more random?
    My article about researchers identifying a potential blue green algae cause & L-Serine treatment for Lou Gehrig's ALS, MND, Parkinsons & Alzheimers is at
    Number of readers.
    Bonny Bonobo alias Brat
    So does that mean that when you post an article here at Science 2.0 and then post the link onto your facebook site where you have 1,870 friends, that you're almost guaranteed a spot in the top articles for a while? If they're good friends that is. Also does having a catchy title that's likely to be picked up by Googlers, like 'September 11th' also help to get them there? Is that why Eric Diaz's 'Why have there been so Many Earthquakes lately" article was in the top articles for so many months?
    My article about researchers identifying a potential blue green algae cause & L-Serine treatment for Lou Gehrig's ALS, MND, Parkinsons & Alzheimers is at
    Different writers have been at it for varying times, sure, so different people have 'core' audience sizes someone new won't have.  Being on TV shows helps too.  No question time and consistency are the big factors.   No one can rig Google that I know of but we are a top science site so out of 10,000,000 links for various things we will still be on the front page.   Facebook&twitter generate no traffic to speak of but if an article gets popular on or slashdot it can generate a lot because those have science audiences.  We put social news and social media links in that toolbar just below each article title so you can try boosting readership with those, though I assume that like here you cant just submit something and have it take off.   It likely takes time to build an audience in social media as well.