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New Facebook for scientists available soon October 24, 2008

Posted by tomography in Community sites, science, Social network.

There are a large number of community sites dedicated for scientists and physicians such as ResearchGATE, BiomedExperts, Sermo, Tiromed, ScienceStage and many others, but the latest one has already been announced in the latest issue of the Journal of Medical Internet Research.

Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh recently announced a prototype networking application called Digital/Vita to help physicians and research scientists find appropriate collaborators quickly and efficiently (J Med Internet Res 2008;10[3]).

Scientists are still using traditional methods (e.g.: browsing through the literature or asking knowledgeable colleagues) to find potential candidates for collaboration, but these are becoming increasingly inefficient.

Digital/Vita will help them become more efficient by automatizing much of this process. Its main focus is on the CV, but you won’t be spending hours filling out another CV, since the system is supposed to recognize various formats, and help you export that data in various other useful formats such as grant applications.

Managing biographical information with Digita/Vita not only requires no extra effort from a scientist compared with traditional approaches, it actually reduces effort because the raw biographical information is converted automatically to several frequently used standard formats.

Is this a vital project? It sure adds simplicity to social media based on the snapshots. After all a list of contacts and a good, manageable CV is all one needs in professional life. The rest is just decoration [on Facebook].

Further reading:

– Andras



1. sebastian - October 24, 2008

Well, fine – but does anybody need another “facebook for scientists”? Th first one mentioned here – ResearchGATE – is also the best one, so why sign up somewhere else?

2. tomography - October 24, 2008

To be honest with you, I am not really sure. Probably there is not really a need for another one, but some companies believe that they can succeed where others have failed. Time will tell wether they are right or wrong. In my opinion there is a need for specific medical communities (that is why radRounds is successful), but general communities are going to have a short half-life. I might be wrong, though! 🙂
I guess it is the same with research communities as it is with sodas: why drink Pespi rather than Coke or DrPepper? Different people, different tastes.
What do you think?

3. Michael R. Alvers - October 27, 2008

GoPubMed.org compiles the vita for you out of your publications. This is the only community platform – limited to the life sciences – which does this for the user. The users/authors can easily correct their profiles and connect there selfs with other researchers.

It’s free of charge and no commercial interests are associated with it. Give it a try!

4. tomography - October 28, 2008

Thank you, Michael!
I will definitely check it out and write something about it.

5. Katie - November 3, 2008

Andras, BiomedExperts.com is also free of charge and provides users with the ability to search their connections by varying degrees of separation. It is notably different from these others mentioned as it was the only literature-based site and was pre-populated with more than 1.5 million expert profiles from PUBMED. It was also ranked second in a recently published Elsevier study as one of the Social Media Top Ten regularly visited by 35% of the surveyed population (researchers who use social networking applications.)

6. tomography - November 4, 2008

Thank you, Katie!
I will check it out definitely.

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