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Review forms and the future/next version of OCS?

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Review forms and the future/next version of OCS?

Postby k_popper » Thu Nov 09, 2006 2:19 pm

Hello,

Strangely, due to the current version of OJS being ahead of OCS in terms of the review process and updating of submissions, we used OJS for managing the review process of an academic conference.

Unfortunately, as outlined somewhere else in this forum, OJS 2.x does not currently do a fully online review system (i.e. there is only qualitative, open-ended response; customized online review forms are not available).

We have to decide on the next stages for our conference/reviewing system and therefore have to make some strategic decisions, continuing with the free OJS/OCS or to buy in another software (we are an academic association, so the usual low-budget issue applies). I therefore kindly ask for some future features of OCS and whether the online review (customized forms) will be available. Specifically, it would be nice to see comments on the following:

a) will OCS 2.x catch up with OJS 2.x in terms of the review process?
b) will OCS 2.x include customized review forms (fully online)?
c) will OCS 2.x include a registration system that allows credit card and other mechanisms than paypal?
d) will it be possible to use OCS 2.x for the backend tasks (review, registration) only while running the conference frontend via a standard university website?

Thanks for your response

k
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Postby asmecher » Thu Nov 09, 2006 4:58 pm

Hi k_popper,

Happy to respond.

a) OCS 2.0 is under heavy development at the moment, and we're planning to release early in the new year. This will bring OCS up to OJS's level for review process and robustness of code. It is also based on the OJS codebase, meaning that features can move more freely between OCS and OJS.

b) OCS 2.0 isn't likely to include review forms from the get-go, but as it's a growing priority for OJS, and as the two share the same codebase, it should get this feature shortly after OJS does.

c) A payment system of some sort will be included with OCS 2.0; it will probably support Paypal as a built-in plugin and should provide an API for additional payment systems. (This is also targeted for the next release of OJS.)

d) Many users are using OJS in this manner, and OCS 2.0 will certainly be able to handle the same approach.

Regards,
Alec Smecher
Public Knowledge Project Team
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Programming specification

Postby k_popper » Mon Nov 27, 2006 3:49 pm

I would like to get some IT staff involved at my Uni regarding the custom review form/online review part of the OJS/OCS system. If you have a detailed specification guide, this would help me to make transparent what is needed. It appears that you are working on a solid programming/code basis so the clearer I can communicate what is involved the better the chances to get staff involved in this. I really believe that this is crucial in getting towards what appears to be an important (and currently lacking) feature in PKP OJS/OCS. Thanks
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Postby asmecher » Tue Nov 28, 2006 1:20 pm

Hi k_popper,

Yes, we're receiving increasing interest in form-based reviews, but haven't had the time to devote to it yet. There are a few resources that might help:In addition to being rather old, the partial implementation was never included because of a number of flaws in its design, such as XSS vulnerabilities, a lack of support for multi-journal installations, and so on, so I wouldn't recommend using it as a basis for new development.

The development team is always willing to work with outside developers, particularly if it's for code that may be included in future releases -- please feel free to ask us anything at pkp-support@sfu.ca. I look forward to working with you.

Regards,
Alec Smecher
Open Journal Systems Team
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Postby Bulter » Tue Mar 13, 2007 7:40 am

Is there any update concerning the custom review forms? I see the last message has been several months ago. I am desperately waiting for the custom review forms option as it would make life so much easier.

Several people I know are interested to make use the OJS but as they cannot include their own review form it does not give them any benefit.

Is there any time scale known when this will be implemented?

Cheers!!!

Robert-Jan
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Postby asmecher » Tue Mar 13, 2007 10:01 am

Hi Robert-Jan,

There's been a lot of interest in this feature, and it's becoming a high priority for us. It's not currently planned for the next release, unfortunately, but we're certainly going to be working on it shortly thereafter. We may release a patch to add the feature to the next release once we've had a chance to implement it.

Regards,
Alec Smecher
Open Journal Systems Team
---
Don't miss the First International PKP Scholarly Publishing Conference
July 11 - 13, 2007, Vancouver, BC, Canada
http://ocs.sfu.ca/pkp2007/
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Postby karljunker » Sun Apr 01, 2007 8:08 am

asmecher wrote:Hi Robert-Jan,

There's been a lot of interest in this feature, and it's becoming a high priority for us. It's not currently planned for the next release, unfortunately, but we're certainly going to be working on it shortly thereafter. We may release a patch to add the feature to the next release once we've had a chance to implement it.

Regards,
Alec Smecher
Open Journal Systems Team
---
Don't miss the First International PKP Scholarly Publishing Conference
July 11 - 13, 2007, Vancouver, BC, Canada
http://ocs.sfu.ca/pkp2007/


Dear Alec,

I have followed this thread with great interest over the past year or so. I am now in business/management school in the U.K., until recently I have worked in Germany as an academic member of staff. I am not a programmer but got interested in this topic because I was involved in a number of conferences and calls for papers for journal special issues and did not have any budget to buy any commercial services. A review of the literature produced some insights, but mostly into commercial products -

Gerry McKiernan “Web-based Journal Manuscript Management and Peer-Review Software and Systems,â€
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Postby Bulter » Tue Apr 17, 2007 4:26 am

Dear Alec Smecher,

Could you give any indication when the next release with the customised review forms? It causes us a lot of hassle to go around this problem. Reviewers get confused and annoyed with the software. this is the last thing we want as we would like to use it in the future as well. When too many reviewers and authors object to this situation we have find another programme and that is not what we want.
I hope you can make the form the highest priority so everyone can make use of it shortly.

Best regards

Robert-Jan Bulter
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Postby asmecher » Tue Apr 17, 2007 9:07 am

Hi Robert-Jan,

Our highest priority at the moment is completing OCS 2.0, which we're planning to release at the end of this month and will not include review forms. In early to mid-May, our focus will change back to OJS 2.2 and we'll be putting together a revised estimate for release. I hope we'll be able to implement review forms for OJS version 2.2, but I won't be able to confirm until we've been able to assess the timeline. Review forms are a high priority for us as well.

Once review forms are implemented for OJS, porting that code to OCS is a fairly simple task. We'll probably be releasing review forms for OCS as a patch as soon as it's available in OJS.

Regards,
Alec Smecher
Open Journal Systems Team
---
Don't miss the First International PKP Scholarly Publishing Conference
July 11 - 13, 2007, Vancouver, BC, Canada
http://ocs.sfu.ca/pkp2007/
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Reviewing process

Postby ramon » Thu Apr 19, 2007 11:14 am

Hello all,

One of the tips we give is to add the form in the document itself or as a Supplementary File for reviewers, using Word or OpenOffice form tools.
This would provide a basic review form, that when implemented in the system could be reatroactively fed, so you keep the records.

Other things you could do is add a text form in the review fields, changing the default value of the text-area in the form (ex.: good () .. etc). Reviewers would just need to type the X on the space available. This was easier for version 1.x.

I personally prefer the Word form approach, since it's easier to maintain.
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Re: Reviewing process

Postby k_popper » Fri Jun 08, 2007 7:33 am

ramon wrote:Hello all,

One of the tips we give is to add the form in the document itself or as a Supplementary File for reviewers, using Word or OpenOffice form tools.
This would provide a basic review form, that when implemented in the system could be reatroactively fed, so you keep the records.

Other things you could do is add a text form in the review fields, changing the default value of the text-area in the form (ex.: good () .. etc). Reviewers would just need to type the X on the space available. This was easier for version 1.x.

I personally prefer the Word form approach, since it's easier to maintain.


Hello Ramon,

While the attachment of word / open office / pdf documents is indeed an option which we have explored in an earlier conference we hosted here, it did not generate the appropriate reactions. a) reviewers were confused about where and how to upload the edited attachments and b) conference organisers were inundated with extra organising work since most of the reviewers sent the attachments back via email, which generated additional editing and updating work on behalf of the conference organisers.

It is probably important to point out that the conference we were hosting was a conference in the business/management arena. Business and management scholars are not as much at ease with attaching documents, uploading or remembering passwords etc. as may be the case with IT scholars or engineers... We received many complaints from individuals and this forced us to rethink whether to use a commercial software package which offers pure online / custom review forms integrated into the process.

In all, I want to reinforce my view here that I consider it very important to address this lack of functionality (custom review forms, php-based & database driven online review) in an update to both OCS and OJS. I think the software is great, the lack of comprehensive online review forms is in my view the single limiting factor inhibiting further adoption of an otherwise outstanding product.

I would hope you manage to look into this feature soon. I will certainly keep checking...

k
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Postby asmecher » Fri Jun 08, 2007 12:04 pm

Hi k_popper,

We've been offered an implementation of custom review forms; I've had the chance to look at it and it appears to be well-written, although of course I have no idea whether it adheres to coding standards etc. I hope we'll be able to include this implementation in OJS 2.2, which will be the next release, but I can't guarantee it.

This implementation, if it's suitable, will be included in forthcoming releases of both OJS and OCS.

Regards,
Alec Smecher
Public Knowledge Project Team
---
Don't miss the First International PKP Scholarly Publishing Conference
July 11 - 13, 2007, Vancouver, BC, Canada
http://ocs.sfu.ca/pkp2007/
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