In a land before DOIs

Like many of you, I have had an ORCID for some years. The idea of a universal identifier for researchers is obviously appealing, and ORCID has prevailed over previous attempts to create such an identifier (remember ResearcherID and Loop(?)?).

With every ORCID comes the option of a publication list, which can be set to auto-update from services such as crossref, resulting in a current and accurate record of one’s publications. This is neat. But life is in constant flux.

Some time ago, my university installed symplectic elements, a system that is used to create (amongst other things) current and accurate records of our publications in a bid to showcase (or at least document) our outputs. Because adaption was somewhat sluggish, the university eventually used some crafty blackmailing techniques incentives, and so I bit the bullet and imported a bibtex file of all my publications, which took me less than ten minutes: despite its poncy name, symplectic elements is quite usable and works well.

In a land before DOIs 1
Careful with that machine, Eugene

I also registered my ORCID with symplectic elements so that my record is auto-updated from this auto-updating source. Pure bliss. And I mostly forgot about the whole setup, because it just works.

Then, just before Easter, the library called and asked if I was up for testing a new feature: a semi-automatic feed from symplectic elements back to my ORCID profile. Are you still with me?

The reason they asked me is that a) I seem to be a techy type and b) I had lots of publications on symplectic that were not on ORCID.

In a land before DOIs 2
With my trusty typewriter, back home in the land before DOI

The reason for that, I finally realised, has something to do with that said publications predate not just ORCIDs but also the advent of DOIs. Yes, that old.

How old? ORCIDs were introduced in 2012. DOIs were introduced in 2000.

Now I feel ancient. But the transfer worked like a charm.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.