Archive for June 24, 2019

Plan S and the Open Journal of Astrophysics

Posted in Open Access with tags , , , , on June 24, 2019 by telescoper

Things have been a little quiet on this side of the Open Journal of Astrophysics but rest assured it has been very busy behind the scenes, with a sizeable batch of papers going through peer review and a number of those are very near the finishing post.

My target was to build up to an average of about one submission a week by the end of 2019, and I think we’re on track to reach that comfortably by the end of summer.

I’ll report more on new publications as they are published, but before that I thought I’d report on a couple of bits of news to do with Plan S, following the issuance last month of revised guidelines.

First, here is a nice summary (taken from this article) of the different ways in principle one could deliver Open Access publishing in a manner consistent with Plan S:

You can click on the image to make it bigger.

The important thing is that the Open Journal of Astrophysics belongs in the column on the far right of the table. I draw your attention to the various comments, especially the one at the end that says the cost of overlay journals is substantially lower. It is, as I explain here.

the authors of this post think it is unclear whether these are compliant with Plan S. That’s a fair comment, but it can be clarified into a definite yes with very few tweaks. It is very encouraging on this point that the CEO of Scholastica (who provide our platform) has written a blog in which he describes the steps being taken to ensure that all Scholastica journals are indeed compliant with Plan S.

Over the coming months, we will announce new functionality that supports complying with Plan S guidelines, and we’re committed to updating our software to meet changes to the Plan S implementation rules as they come out.

I was very happy to read this plan as it includes adding a number of things to the Scholastica system that we currently have to do ourselves (e.g. registering DOIs with CrossRef).

Anyway, another notification from Scholastica has just come in so that will have to be that for now.



More Vain Human Fake (Cosmology) Science

Posted in The Universe and Stuff with tags , on June 24, 2019 by telescoper

I haven’t mucked out my spam folder for a while and when I did so just now I found that a long-term irritant of mine, a certain Mr David Hine, had attempted to post another comment:

I have to admit that I’m not well up on the biblical references so I looked them up. Isaiah Chapter 40 Verse 22

He sits enthroned above the circle of the earth, and its people are like grasshoppers. He stretches out the heavens like a canopy, and spreads them out like a tent to live in.

I don’t see any mention of the Hubble constant, nor indeed any statement that the stretching of the heavens follows a linear relation (Hubble’s Law).

As for Psalm 2, in the New International Version, Verse 1 reads:

Why do the nations conspire
    and the peoples plot in vain?

I have only just now realized that the second part of this verse refers to the construction of graphs. Personally, I never plot in vain. I normally use python.

UPDATE: I have now received further information of the derivation of the Hubble constant straight from the horse’s arse mouth:


Unfortunately I am so lacking in mental equipment I can’t really understand this equation. It’s not even an equation actually because it doesn’t equate anything with anything.

Anyway, let’s look at the expression given in the above comment. A Megaparsec has the units of length. The speed of light has units of length/time, so  whatever the formula calculates has units of length2 time-1, which is dimensionally incorrect for the Hubble constant, which has units of time-1.

Moreover, if I put values for c, π, 21 and 2 into the equation I don’t even get anything like 70.98047:

π21 ≈ 2.75 × 1010 (dimensionless).

2 × `a Mpc’ × c ≈ 2 × 3.086 ×1022 m × 3 × 108 m s-1 ≈ 1.83 × 1031 m2 s-1.

Thus the full expression has a value approximately 6.66 × 1020 m2 s-1.

The correct value for the Hubble constant is about 2.2 × 10−18 s−1.

Completely wrong value and completely wrong dimensions. The first three figures of the answer may be significant however.

Here’s some reasoned criticism:


I’ve checked the above calculation and don’t see any mistakes. Perhaps I forgot to take away the number I first thought of…