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September 28th, 2005

Papers Blog

There’s a new papers blog entry up.

As you can probably see from the gap between entries these days, my enthusiasm for the papers blog project, and my time available for doing it, are diminishing somewhat. (The fall off in entries has led to a fall off in hits – from 12000 unique visitors in April down to little over 8000 this month.) Now that everyone in philosophy has papers online, keeping track of all the address changes, clawing through all the false positives (people who keep things like office hours, or lists of talks in their departments etc on their papers page have pages that update all the time without much interest), finding out whether something is a paper or basically a blog post to a non-blog, separating out the philosophy papers from the non-philosophy papers on sites that have both, etc takes more time than I can really spare. And I have another project that I’ll be launching soon that will take up a fair bit of time. So I suspect that I’ll basically give it all up fairly soon.

On the other hand, the procedures for running the site are now fairly well in place. Anyone who is interested in taking it over, either at opp.weatherson.org or at their own address, should leave a note in the comments here. I think I could probably pass on the knowledge I’ve gained from doing this fairly quickly so a new person could hit the ground running. Possibly someone who is better at this kind of thing than me could arrange for grant money to keep the site running with the administrator getting paid. With an hour a day it could be a really very effective site, so the grants in question needn’t be more than a few thousand dollars a year.

Posted by Brian Weatherson in Uncategorized

6 Comments »

This entry was posted on Wednesday, September 28th, 2005 at 10:40 pm and is filed under Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments RSS 2.0 feed. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

6 Responses to “Papers Blog”

  1. Ryan Miller says:

    I think I have time to do this, perhaps you could email me with more information? Specifically, you’re considering an hour a day ideal, but how much time were you actually investing at the 12000 visitor level and how much are you investing now? And what sort of automation are you using to find the sites that have changed? Is this something I could easily teach a work-study student to use? I’m sure I could come up with something myself, but that might take awhile and so your system would presumably be used for that period to ensure a smoother changeover. Thanks for all the work you’ve invested thus far; I know that I’ve used your site a number of times.

  2. wo says:

    Yes, OPP mustn’t die! I’d still be interested in trying to see how much of the task can be automated: checking whether a site has changed, parsing it for links, fetching the linked documents and guessing whether they are relevant doesn’t sound too difficult (unless the documents are in Microsoft Word format). If there’s some chance that this would be used if it works, I would give it a try.

  3. Birgit Kellner says:

    I’m not a professional philosopher, but have been using the papers blog as a source of information with great profit over the last months, ever since I discovered it. To me, it’s been a gold-mine of interesting papers that I would otherwise never have found. Thanks for all your efforts so far; I really hope the papers blog can be continued.

  4. Doug Portmore says:

    Brian,

    Thanks so much for starting the papers blog and for running it as long as you have. It has been and continues to be a very valuable service to the philosophical profession, and I hope that you’ll either reconsider or find someone who is willing to carry the torch.

    Thanks to Ryan for his willingness to take over.

  5. Jonathan Ichikawa says:

    I guess it looks like you have a volunteer. I was going to offer myself, although I can’t do it until I get a new computer, which may be a couple of months. If you still need someone then, I’ll volunteer.

  6. Doug says:

    Thanks very much for maintaining the papers blog as long as you have. I wonder if there isn’t some way of letting authors do the work for you (or for some other indexing service.) The danger is of course that authors will be lazy about it. But as OPP gains in readership, anyone who actually wants an on-line audience would be wise to send links to their papers.