[OSGeo-Discuss] [Geo4All] Draft of Open Letter on the importance to protecting independent peer review frameworks for Scholarly publications of Scientific Associations

María Arias de Reyna delawen at gmail.com
Wed Jul 25 01:06:31 PDT 2018

On Wed, Jul 25, 2018 at 9:57 AM, Peter Baumann <
p.baumann at jacobs-university.de> wrote:

> Hi Christian,
> while I could not agree more to what you say there is one point to
> disagree with:
> On 24.07.2018 18:43, Christian Willmes wrote:
> Dear Suchith,
> I understand your point, and I also support your views on this, but this
> is from my perspective a too personal/particular issue, as to have it as an
> "OSGeo open letter". Also, because this is more of an ICA and not so much
> an OSGeo issue, I think.
> First, I would keep it more general. You address a particular issue (UN
> SDG book published by esri), and also some personal background (this should
> not matter to the addressed subject). I would recommend you keep it from
> being personal and denouncing proprietary GIS vendors. If a company plays
> by the rules of science, there is nothing wrong about that company
> publishing a scientific book. I.e. almost all book publishers are
> commercial companies with interests somehow and somewhere.
> You need to “attack” scientific “wrong doing” by that particular company
> in conducting the editing and publication of that book. Publishing books if
> done correctly is not wrong, even by a vendor with vested interests. But if
> you witness, for example, that submissions using open source GIS solutions
> are disadvantaged against the submissions using products of the proprietary
> GIS vendor publishing the book, that would be the point to raise and attack.
> Second, better write about how it should be done to avoid this negative
> “Fake Science” things from happening. Here the idea of Open Science and
> Reproducible Science is key, i.e. the most openness and transparency
> possible. We just need more transparency in science and also in the whole
> process of editing/reviewing and publishing a book. And this is where OSGeo
> can contribute. Basically, real reproducible and open science is not
> possible without open source software. If you can’t see how something is
> implemented, you can not really reproduce the results.
> No. Open science and open source software are fundamentally different
> things. For example, if you derive stats from some data set via SQL it does
> not matter whether it comes from open-source PostgreSQL or from proprietary
> Oracle. Because the SQL language in its syntax and semantics is
> standardized, and it is assured thereby that both systems will deliver the
> same results. So standards actually are a prerequisite for science to be
> comparable, but surely not open source.

If you use proprietary products and can't verify that the result is not due
to a bug (even an intended bug ), you are missing an important step on
verifiability. Open Source (as in "I can see the code") is an important
piece of open science.
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