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When Black Holes and Neutron Stars Collide, These Are The Possible Results.

A quark star is a hypothesized type of object more dense than a Neutron star but not dense enough...

Gravitational Wave Astronomy In Space, Public Talks of LISA Con #4.

Gravitational wave astronomy in space, that is the goal of the LISA Collaboration.  LISA stands...

Implicit Bias? Even Women And People Of Color Can Have It.

Biased against Women and Black People? That is what the Harvard Implicit Association test  ...

Another Slice of APS April 2019, Knowing Theories Of Others.

A simple slice of life as an academic.  No chair was assigned for the session Z13 in which...

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Hontas FarmerRSS Feed of this column.

Currently I am an adjunct professor at the City Colleges of Chicago and the College of DuPage . My research focuses on astrophysics from massive star formation to astroparticle physics. Born and... Read More »

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Anonymous now has more credibility than all four big US cable news channels and the big newspapers combined.  This is due to the fact that while they and their sources are …anonymous.. they manage to find verifiable information.  This claim is different.   IF this is true there are only TWO ways NASA could have found proof of extraterrestrial life.  SETI has intercepted a convincingly strong source of intelligently engineered radio from a known habitable zone Kepler planet.

Open science communication is not a new idea but the idea of doing the composition of a paper on a cloud based, search indexed, public platform where anyone can see how the sausage is made is.   Authorea is just such a platform and I am using it to put the finishing touches on a paper dealing with a true theory of everything (a field of study littered with corpses so suffice it to say I may well be wrong like everyone else who has tried.)  the main topic of this blog is to be the act of publishing on Authorea or a similar platform vs traditional LaTeX editing. 
Authoring with Authorea

Scientific consensus is not gospel dogma to be enforced, instead it should, and MUST change in the face of contrary data.  There are theories like evolution, general relativity, and climate change which are truly settled science.  Inflation (and string theory) are not there yet.  Letters signed by 33 or 33,333 prestigious physicist won't make that so.  Only data can.  

A so-called "March for Science" will occur April 22nd 2017.  I have half a mind to show up either wearing a sing extolling the climate change fighting virtues of nuclear power OR with a petition to ban dihydrogen monoxide AND another petition banning all use of vaccines.  I'll bet I'd get at least 1 out of every 10 people at any such march to sign for those bans.

The arXiv.org (said as archive) is one of the oldest websites on the internet and serves as a curated collection of scholarly preprints submitted by recognized scientist.  I even have a paper there on massive star formation (arXiv:1311.3983).  I tried to publish in another area and they say submit to a journal and get feedback.  Then a favorable review isn’t enough, so I need to get it published.  Then in a subsequent email from them, I must get it published in a “mainstream journal” with no guarantee that being published in any journal would do the trick.

Jeffery Beall was keeper of a controversial list of predatory publishers that has been shut down. A big problem with this list is it was academically classist and biased towards journals in non-English speaking countries.  Rather than trash the idea of a list of predatory journals, I propose the idea of a non-comprehensive white list of journals combined with a list of questions one can ask for "is this journal predatory?".