apostilb marginal illuminations on science


Apostilb is a place for communicating science. We (@neuroamanda and @RaoOfPhysics) are two communicators who work for big science organizations, which sometimes constrains the range of things we can write about. This is an exercise for us to extend those bounds and summarize interesting science we come across. Periodically, we will post a new piece about recent research (less than five years old) that hasn’t been covered widely in other outlets. Sometimes we might also write about popular science topics.

Lay science summaries have become topical in the scicomm community. Science enthusiasts have taken it upon themselves to translate lots of research articles into lay language, on many different platforms. Researchers who are interested in the broader impacts of their work have also started providing non-technical abstracts in different forms, from tweets to video. An opinion piece in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences has called for lay summaries to become a standard part of scientific publishing, to enhance public understanding and facilitate interdisciplinary communication.

Apostilb brings you:

freely available
(open access) research
undiscovered science lay summaries

Apostilb: reflections is our meta-blog about science communication, journalism, research and everything in between.

About the name

  1. apostil: a marginal note; a gloss

    Annotating scholarly works has a long history. This kind of marginalia, an old form of commentary or peer review, has emerged again with scholarly communication sites like PubPeer and PubMed Commons. We have also integrated the annotation service hypothes.is here as a discussion platform.

  2. apostilb: a unit of luminance

    With our apostils we are trying to shine a light on the original scientific content, seeing it in a new and hopefully universally intelligible light.

The designer of the apostilb logo describes its design and significance.