Readers of AIP Matters are treated each week to short features that highlight news and activities from AIP's Publishing Center in Melville, NY, and from the Physics Resources Center (PRC) in College Park, MD. I want to draw attention to the important connections between the two locations' business operations. To the casual observer they may seem unrelated, yet, in fact, they represent complementary sides of the business. Over the next two weeks, I will hold all-staff meetings (June 19 in College Park and June 24 in Melville) to share my impressions of my first year on the job and my vision for the future of the institute. An important factor in realizing my vision for AIP is the strength that can be harnessed for the benefit of our customers if we optimize the links between our two operations.
The Publishing Center manages the publication process for AIP's 10 peer-reviewed physics journals and provides publishing services for many more journals. Journals are the primary means of scientific communication. They live or die by the quality of the science presented in them by authors. Progress in science is dependent on how efficiently scientists can communicate their results to their peers and to those implementing the results in new technology and practices.
So how does the Physics Resources Center complement the Publishing Center's work? If journals represent the primary output of the scientific community, PRC supports the input—scientists who research and publish, academics who serve as editors and reviewers, and other stakeholders who implement the research results. PRC services span the range from nurturing undergraduate students' interest in physics to delivering career options, from addressing the community's data needs to communicating research results to the public, and from interfacing with Congress on science policy and funding issues to preserving the history of science. If PRC is successful, we can be assured of a continuous input to our journals. And, if our journals maintain high quality and we provide reliable worldwide access to them, they will be successful vehicles of science communication and the scientific enterprise.
Recognizing the essential link between these two complementary and mutually indispensable operations is just the first step. Reinforcing the feedback between them and leveraging our combined areas of expertise will strengthen the institute for our customers. For physics and physicists to stay valuable to the world community, both sides—the outreach and the scientific communication—need to be continuously nurtured. This is the job AIP can do well.
Empires of the mind
A number of key staff from Publishing Services participated in the 30th annual meeting of the Society for Scholarly Publishing held in Boston, MA, at the end of May. This year's theme was Empires of the Mind: Inventing the Future of Scholarly Publishing. While the Publishing Sales group staffed a booth at the exhibit, other AIP staff were involved in making presentations. Doug LaFrenier served as co-chair of the program planning committee and moderated a session on creating successful online communities. In addition to serving on the planning committee, Christine Orr moderated a session on enhancing scholarly content using taxonomies and folksonomies. Tim Ingoldsby presented at a pre-meeting seminar on incorporating Office 2007 into the scholarly publishing environment, and Larry Belmont gave a presentation about Scitation's agile development strategy. Thanks to those combined efforts, AIP enjoyed high visibility and reinforced its image as a leading-edge scholarly publisher and service provider.
The Society of Physics Students (SPS) and the National Society of Hispanic Physicists (NSHP) entered into a formal partnership this spring and are now offering joint student memberships at a discounted price. SPS is pleased to support the work of NSHP, which seeks to increase opportunities for Hispanics in physics and to increase the number of practicing Hispanic physicists. The partnership comes at a good time, as one of SPS' current objectives is to raise visibility and focus on student diversity in physics with the Future Faces of Physics campaign.
Eye candy for the AIP home page
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A representative from a leading lighting company recently visited AIP's Melville offices to introduce "Energy Saver" compact fluorescent bulbs. These Energy Star-qualified bulbs use 75 percent less energy, contain less mercury than a standard incandescent bulb, and last up to 10 times longer. An energy audit is now underway to assess the financial implications of a complete switch from standard incandescent ceiling bulbs to these energy savers at both Melville and College Park locations. To see if the new bulbs are easy on the eyes, half of the standard bulbs were replaced in the Melville facilities office with energy-saver T8 25-watt extra-long-life bulbs. Side by side, we can't tell the difference.
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