Octopus: preparing for launch

Feb 14, 2022 by Alex Freeman

Again I must apologise that I’ve not been keeping this blog up to date. Octopus has grown hugely in the last year or so and is about to launch as a full, working platform - funded by the UKRI, and in partnership with Jisc and the UK Reproducibility Network (UKRN).

The current Octopus prototype is at https://octopuspublishing.org and you can follow us on Twitter @science_octopus. Hopefully, at the end of February 2022, we will be announcing the first launch of the new platform. It won’t be all-singing, all-dancing to start with - we’re going to launch another prototype with dummy data to continue our user-testing, but this will increase in size and functionality over the months until we’re ready for a full launch in June. At this point, Octopus will become the new primary research record and ideas and work published in it will be ‘registered’ and stand as a record of what has been done. Institutions and funders (as well as everyone else) will be able to use this record to see what work exists on a particular topic, and what work has been done by individuals.

If you want to be part of the user-testing over the coming months, then do let us know: the new project manager at Jisc is Lola Harre ([email protected]) and you can send her an email directly. We’re looking for people at all career stages, in all fields, and doing all kinds of research (both hypothesis-driven and not; qualitative as well as quantitative).

Hopefully in the run-up to Junbe you’ll hear more about Octopus from different sources. We have slide decks you can use if you want to help spread the word! It’s going to be quite a big shift to get everyone to change to this new way of thinking about how they approach their research work and how they share it - but I do think it will help change the research culture if we do.