London, UK (PRWEB UK) 23 November 2012
MiniManuscript.com is a major breakthrough in finding a way through huge piles of academic research and information.
Users work together to summarise research papers. A large amount of literature can be covered in a short space of time, thereby freeing up valuable time and increasing the pace of scientific research.
Jake Fairnie (25), a PhD student from UCL, and Dr Anna Remington (30), a Junior Research Fellow at the University of Oxford, have created MiniManuscript.com.
“We’re a bit like Wikipedia, but for academic literature,” explains Fairnie, “like watching the trailers before deciding what film to see – it doesn't replace the full feature but it means you only go to see the ones you really want to watch.” Alongside the MiniManuscript summaries, there are also discussion threads and other multimedia content related to each article (e.g. YouTube videos and podcasts, see an example here). It brings the literature to life for those who may prefer a less text-heavy learning route.
Winner of the UCL Bright Ideas Award (2012) and a Shell Livewire Grand Ideas Award (September, 2012), academic experts across the world believe it will help millions of students and academics to more quickly and easily understand complex technical documents and research papers. “This is one of those simple but brilliant ideas which will transform the way in which scientists and scholars organise their research” says Professor Sir Ivor Crewe (Master of University College, Oxford). “A truly ground-breaking idea. The potential for growth is phenomenal – as is the impact it will have on academic study not just in the UK, but worldwide” adds Timothy Barnes (Director of UCL Advances; see what others are saying here: http://www.minimanuscript.com/press)
The need for such a tool is clear. As Remington explains: “Jake and I realised that we were reading a lot of the same literature and so we created a shared document where we would write short outlines of research papers. It meant we could cover the material in half the time. It was immediately evident that this should happen on a global scale.”
Embracing this ethos is a timely move in light of the recent explosion in crowd sourced enterprise, open access and the premium placed on Twitter-style brevity.
Is it going to work? Only time will tell. But if anyone can do it – these guys can.