One future for journal publishing, revisited

Back in September, I noted that Tim Gowers announced a new journal, Discrete Analysis. As I said then, the content of the journal probably won’t be of much interest to most readers of Logic Matters. But the form of the journal is fascinating. It is to be an arXiv overlay journal. In the briefest headline terms, what this means, in Tim Gowers’s words, is that

rather than publishing, or even electronically hosting, papers, it will consist of a list of links to arXiv preprints. Other than that, the journal will be entirely conventional: authors will submit links to arXiv preprints, and then the editors of the journal will find referees, using their quick opinions and more detailed reports in the usual way in order to decide which papers will be accepted. … [So] The articles will be peer-reviewed in the traditional way.

The first issue is now online. And rather striking it looks too. There is more about the launch issue and the project in Tim Gowers’s latest blogpost. I wonder if any logicians out there will be spurred on to think about starting such an open-access journal? It seems a terrific idea.

By the way, for those of you with some little maths, if you click on the banner for the lead article, you get a short editorial intro. to Terence Tao’s paper, and — this is nice touch! — a link to a video of a talk that Tao gave about his proof, which (even if you don’t really follow the later parts of it) gives you a sense of what’s going on.

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