Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Replacement for Virtual Journals?

I notice that the APS Virtual Journals are going away. I was a big fan of the nano virtual journal, since the people who ran it generally did a really nice job of aggregating articles from a large number of journals (APS, AIP, IOP, Nature, Science, PNAS, etc.) on a weekly basis. True, they never did manage to work out a deal to coordinate with the ACS, and they'd made a conscious decision to avoid journals dedicated to nano (e.g., Nature Nano). Still it will be missed.

Now I will show my age. Is there a nice web 2.0 way to replace the virtual journal? In the announcement linked above, they justify the end of these virtual journals by saying that there are new and better tools available for gathering this sort of information. What I'd like to do, I think, is look at the RSS feeds of the tables of contents of a bunch of journals, filter on certain keywords, and aggregate together links to all the articles. Is there a nice way to do this without miss and fuss? Suggestions would be appreciated.



Will said...

Yahoo Pipes is actually really useful for this sort of thing:


Not what you're looking for, but on a related note, Mitch from Chemistry-Blog made Chemfeeds:


sam said...

I was about to mention Pipes, too. I've used it before and it works really well. It's a lot of effort up front (deciding which keywords etc.) but then you have a single RSS feed exactly how you want it.

Pascal Mickelson said...

Hi Doug.

If you're using a Mac, NetNewsWire ( http://netnewswireapp.com/ ) is an RSS reader which can do keyword searches of all your feeds with minimal effort. Just set up a "smart list" that looks for RSS items that contain the keywords of your choice. Super easy.

You can even group together all your smart lists into one folder that will display all those results together.

Cheers! --Pascal

Jonah said...

Hey Pascal,
Did we ever talk about that? I use the exact same setup! I run through my feeds in nnw then import what is interesting into mendeley. I still manage the pdfs in Papers as mendeley's free account does not give me nearly enough space if I add them in. All of these are nice to sync with their iOS clients too.

Pascal Mickelson said...

Jonah, I'm not sure if we ever discussed it, but it seems likely because I've used this setup since I wrote my masters thesis.

I use BibDesk to manage my citations and keep track of pdfs, but that's very similar to Papers+Mendeley.

barabogi said...

Google RSS reader does not support any filter function. But, you can add that, using "google reader filter"