Academic Computing PTY LTD was formed in 2020 to address the needs of the academic (university and college) community, specifically faciliation of the academic research, publication, professional association, and conferencing space.
We have extensive experience in the academic sector in the above roles, and have provided services to academic associations and universities since 2010. Our products are also useful for political organisations.
- No standard software in the market except Word, EndNote (for referencing etc), and probably Moodle and Sakai, which have problems (later analysis)
- No integration, major silo problems (OpenAthens and DOIs, ORCID aside), basically libraries can integrate with journals but that’s it
- No standard software for journals (each journal publisher has their own UI, OJS is unstable/hard to manage)
- No standard software for professional associations (big gap)
- No standard software for conferences (EasyChair and others exist but nothing standardised)
- Covid-19 has made digital-everything normal now.
Vast profiteering in journal publishing space:
- produce material
Taxpayers pay for:
- research to be done, e.g. NRF, DHET
- to access research outputs (paywall)
- place article online
- “page fees” to academics/universities
- to buy journals or articles
- charge libraries for subscriptions
Academics generate the content, and then pay to publish and consume their own work
- Publishers make billion
This resulted in some pushback from academics:
- Sci-hub case. Founded by Alexandra Elbakyan in 2011 in Kazakhstan to undermine the above monopolisation of knowledge. sci-hub.domain … the domain changes regularly due to copyright lawsuits
- Open Publishing movement e.g. frontiersin.org and others which charge to publish but not to read
- Open Publishing options with traditional publishers, again, pay to make your paper “open” so that you can be read
- Other sites: Academics now put their papers on academia.edu and researchgate.net, but the copyright belongs to the publisher!
Existing academic platforms are not ideal
- Most publishers use Web 1.0 – 2.0 (ancient) software for accepting journal submissions – eg “editorialmanager”
- Moodle is resource-hungry and requires a high level infrastructure.
- Sakai is exceptionally slow, crashes if modified, uses a 3-semester model suitable only for Americans, also ancient user interface. It’s used by a number of local universities
- OJS – open journal system – crashes as soon as there’s a decimal point change in PHP