How Open should I be?

Here’s a question–and I’m specifically inviting answers–that may or may not be moot:

If there is a GOAJ4: Gold Open Access Journals 2013-2018, should I use LibreOffice rather than Word 2013 and Excel 2013 to produce it, thus being as Open as possible?

[I don’t know yet whether there will be a GOAJ4. I hope to hear soon…]

I’ve downloaded the most recent LibreOffice, just to experiment a bit…

The Issues

So far, the spreadsheet portion of LibreOffice seems to work just fine–for example, it handles very large pivot tables rapidly–but I haven’t tried graphs yet. Since GOAJ graphs aren’t especially fancy, I wouldn’t anticipate problems.

On the document side, however…

  • LibreOffice doesn’t seem to pick up tracking instructions when importing a .docx file–and doesn’t seem to kern by default.
  • As a result of this and possibly other issues, the country supplement shows up as 319 pages rather than 293; GOAJ3 itself shows up as 187 pages rather than 179 (in both cases ignoring front matter); and, just for interest, Cites & Insights 18.7 showed up as 73 pages rather than 70.
  • So far, I haven’t figured out how to say “always kern type,” which you can effectively do in Word by setting that in base styles.I imagine I could figure it out.
  • LibreOffice seems to offer lots more options than Word 2013 in some areas–but I must admit that I found the page views harder to read, sometimes with phantom bolding and the like.

In general, it just feels like LibreOffice 6 is typographically clumsy compared to Word–but, of course, I’m used to Word.

So: what do you think? Worth what may be some extra effort and clumsiness? (Am I missing some fundamental steps in LibreOffice?)

Comments open for two weeks, I believe.

Other Questions Still Open

NOTE [15 Nov 2018]: I’ve resolved all but one of the queries below.

I asked a series of questions at the end of the subject supplement and on Facebook. I’d still like to hear opinions. To date, there haven’t been any:

  • Would it make more sense to categorize journal sizes based on the latest year’s volume, rather than the peak article volume over the six-year period?
  • Does the split between APCLand and OAWorld (used this year in GOAJ3 and this subject supplement, but not in Gold Open Access Journals by Country 2012-2017) make sense, or is it a distraction?
  • For GOAJ3 itself, is the Visibility measure useless, or should I either retain it or even expand it to a more granular measure?
  • For subject segments, should Psychology be lumped into Medicine, and should Anthropology be treated as part of STEM?
  • Do the publisher categories provide useful information?
  • For country listings, should I continue to use names as provided in DOAJ or normalize to shorter forms used in Wikipedia and elsewhere—that is, Iran, Taiwan, Russia, Macedonia, Moldova, Bolivia and Venezuela? If so, what forms should I use for the Republic of Korea (South Korea?) and the Democratic Republic of the Congo?
  • Should the graph of free and pay articles by year be replaced by or supplemented with a table with the same data as numbers?
  • How about commentary? Last year’s subject supplement included my brief comments about what seemed most interesting in each subject’s tables—but the room left by removing commentary means that this subject supplement offers more complete country lists, going down to 20 articles for all subjects except Medicine.
  • Similarly, the last two country-oriented publications have eschewed commentary in order to avoid even longer/larger publications. Would you like to see commentary restored?
  • [Added at 4:40 pm] Or should I keep things as much like the 2012-2017 version as possible, to allow direct comparisons?

And, again, here are resolutions of all but one of these questions.

Comment here or by email to waltcrawford@gmail.com

 

 

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