Dorothy Bishop has a good blog post discussing her lack of faith in the quality of Frontiers journals. I’ve heard other people express similar views recently, and I’m starting to share their concerns. While there are certainly still solid articles published in Frontiers journals, there are often an equal number of studies whose scientific rigor is questionable (and sometimes even obviously lacking). I am a big fan of Open Access publishing, especially journals such as PLOS ONE which emphasize quality science over subjective novelty. Unfortunately, Frontiers seems to have gone wrong somewhere when it comes to striking a balance between inclusiveness and quality control. Bishop suggests this may be due to financial incentives to publish articles that would otherwise be rejected, and I wonder if it may also be due in part to the “Community-run” journal model of Frontiers which essentially creates multiple independently-run journals under the Frontiers name, potentially each with their own particular standards and policies depending on who the editors are. Hopefully the leadership and Frontiers will start to recognize these issues and act quickly to resolve them, because it would be a shame to see such a big supporter of open science be relegated to the scientific dust bin.
Motion sensing using the doppler effect
Very neat trick using computer speakers and the doppler effect to do surprisingly accurate motion tracking. Try it yourself in the browser (but be warned it’s not pleasant to listen to).
A Subway Delay Story
The MTA made an adorable 8-bit video to explain how they deal with subway delays.
Who Needs a GPS? A New York Geography Quiz
Who Needs a GPS? A New York Geography Quiz – NYTimes.com
I managed 85th percentile, which I think is pretty good for someone who didn’t grow up in the city.
Gridlock vs. Bottlenecks
Gridlock vs. Bottlenecks is a very cool interactive exploration of traffic dynamics and how traffic jams can sometimes emerge almost out of nowhere.