About this project
Reader brings scientific and technical documents into the 21st century by adding intuitive navigation and rich context to scientific and technical documents. We are three friends who are passionate about open science and eager to better the process of discovery by making it easier to find, navigate, and discuss research.
Reader is a powerful viewer for scientific documents that works on mobile, tablet, and computer platforms. You can access manuscripts via a URL in your web browser and there is no software or app to install or configure. Here are some key features:
Share or comment on any sentence or figure in the paper.
Get inline context for references as well as a map of where those references are discussed throughout the paper.
Get inline context and discussion of figures in a paper as well as the entire discussion for a figure, even if it is distributed throughout the paper.
There are lots of other features, like the ability to bookmark papers and citations as well as the ability to search through papers and the supporting information (references, comments, etc).
We hope that Reader will improve the reading experience for everyone including scholars, journalists, and citizen scientists. That’s why we’re making it 100% free. We hope Reader will ignite discussion between scientists, non-scientists, and authors of all kinds.
Reader is designed with mobile in mind and works on your mobile devices and desktop web browser.
Why Are We Doing This?
Have you ever had to read a bunch of science papers for a class assignment, for research, or because you were simply interested in understanding a new science report or discovery? Did you find yourself flipping back and forth between a figure on page 1 and the text on page 13? Did you find yourself wanting to know more about a citation and why it was used? As an author, have you wished for a better way to get feedback on your published work? These are the sorts of pain points we are solving with Reader.
Using a traditional format like .pdf is like watching the big game in a room by yourself. There’s no context or discussion and you’re likely to miss something important.
We want to build a sustainable enterprise so we can continue innovating and adding features to Reader and other related future tools. We also need the resources to precompute large sets of scientific papers from PubMed Central and elsewhere.
We are looking for the support of our families, friends, and colleagues to help us bring Reader to life. Reader will always be free to use for anyone that wants a better way to navigate scientific literature.
$10: Early access to the reader + badge
We are going to be designing some clever t-shirts with your help! We’ll send out surveys to all of the t-shirt backers to pick winners. Design submissions and concepts are welcome!
$40: Lab Notebook
Show your support in style with a high-quality hardbound lab notebook.
If you believe in what we’re doing, click “Back this project” now and help us make Reader a reality!
$80: Book Bag
Risks and challenges
We have a lot of experience in designing and building software. Rudy is a product manager that specialized in social gaming, user experience, and user engagement. Gareth is a programmer and previously contributed to and moderates the free genomics resource GCAT (www.bioplanet.com/GCAT). David is a former professor and well-published in the DNA repair and genomics fields. He brings along vision and direction, having been a long-time creator and consumer of scientific content. Furthermore we have a number of academic scientists, bloggers, and non-experts advising along the way to help us build a tool that really brings value to everyone. We would love input from all of you as well.
We have hired designers and developers to help us complete our mission and are looking to the community for help in getting to the finish line.