Wednesday 30 January 2019

The Im-flip condition in the two-dimensional Potts model

I have been using this blog for publishing the reviewer reports that I write for journals, since the journals typically do not publish the reports. However, the new journal SciPost Physics does publish the reports for accepted articles. I have recently reviewed an article by Gorbenko, Rychkov and Zan for SciPost Physics, and written about the experience: it would seem that I need not blog about that article, since my report is already online.

However, not everything that I have to say on the article made it into the report. I will now write on two calculations that I did: the first one is a test of one of the article’s main predictions in more general cases, the second one is a direct derivation and generalization of a technical result that they obtain in a roundabout way.

Sunday 13 January 2019

Plan S implementation: in danger of mission creep?

The principles behind plan S have already sparked lots of debate, including an open letter denouncing the plan, based on objections that I found not very convincing. Now that the plan’s promoters have published their draft implementation guidance (and are inviting comments on it), the discussion can become more specific. Given the boldness of the principles, their implementation cannot be painless, and is bound to raise criticisms if not resistance. It is therefore both crucial and difficult to get the implementation right, and to inflict the minimum amount of pain that is necessary for achieving the goals.

This means that the implementation should be tightly focussed on open access and cost reduction, to the exclusion of other possible goals that a reform of the publishing system might have. I will discuss whether the draft implementation guidance is indeed focussed enough. But first, let me be more specific about what a minimal implementation might look like.