Get involved: Contributorship Badges project call – May 20

Since our launch two years ago, we’ve been working on prototypes to not only address meaty problems in the research space, but also show how the web and open technology can further scientific tools. We believe there’s a tremendous amount one can learn about reuse and working collaboratively through open source projects, and want to (more explicitly) test that out as we develop our next prototype. On May 20th (next Wednesday) at 11am ET, I’ll be hosting a call for anyone interested in contributing to the Contributorship Badges project. We hope you’ll join us.

WHAT: Call for anyone interested in helping build Contributorship Badges for Science
WHEN: May 20, 11am ET

What we’re trying: learn by building

We want to help researchers learn how to leverage the web by building within the open source community. By encouraging participation in an ongoing project, more researchers will experience best practices in open source and learn how to run their own projects in a way that engages the community and builds skills. This builds on a core belief part of our pedagogy here at Mozilla, that the most transformative moments often come from working on things that matter, building them together, and empowering others to get involved..

By learning best practices in open source, we can foster a community in research that shares skills, increases code quality and encourages discoverability and use through collaboration.

What are Contributorship Badges?

The Contributorship Badges project was announced late last year as a collaboration testing out the use of badges as a standardized digital credential for the work done by each author on an academic article. Since then, we’ve starting building a prototype that uses Mozilla’s Open Badges infrastructure to store and issue badges to an author’s ORCID (a unique researcher identifier) based on their contribution to a paper published by BioMed Central (BMC) or Public Library of Science (PLoS). The badges awarded are based on the 14-role author contribution ‘taxonomy’ being developed by the Wellcome Trust, Digital Science and others.

I’ve worked on setting up the bare-bones skeleton and general plan of this project, including getting started and contributing guidelines. Next wednesday, I’ll be hosting a call for anyone who wants to get involved where I’ll go over what’s been done and where people can jump in. I plan on spending majority of my time on badges mentoring new contributors and reviewing patches.

The Mozilla Science Lab will still be leading development on the prototype. I’d like to see more researchers contributing code, design, and other suggestions and experiencing being a part of an open source project.

Join us May 20

This call is open to designers, developers, researchers, publishers — pretty much anyone interested in participating and learning more about the project. We could use all sorts of input on this (beyond just code), so if you’re new to open source, come join us – we’d love to have you involved. We want to give researchers a painless way to experience open, iterative workflow and learn how open source can help their community.

Building Contributorship Badges for Science has the potential to be a great learning experience for us. I hope you’ll join us as we learn and build together!

Further reading