Mgoblog's Influence on Scientific Publishing

Submitted by Vonkleist on December 5th, 2018 at 11:56 AM

This quote appeared in a recent book from Springer Publishing. The book can be found here 





December 5th, 2018 at 12:05 PM ^

I'm going to neg myself for being too judgmental on the whole "scientific nerds" thing.

I am sitting here doing data frequency distributions for insurance claims fraud detection as I type this.

Yeah, that's so much higher up the "cool" food chain.



December 5th, 2018 at 12:09 PM ^

What is the cheapest Michigan carrier for auto rates btw?  Suburbs and all the typical low risk checks here...Farmers is jacking my rates up 20% a year and I have no claims!  Frankenmuth insurance looks good from what I seen...anyone else you can recommend for 50s age bracket?


December 5th, 2018 at 1:17 PM ^

Username checks out.

The STIG is taught nowhere, nor is it intuitive.  In fact, it's just a great big tangle of slop trying to be everything to everyone for anything that anyone needs to secure - as long as someone's already seen it.

If it hasn't been seen yet, it's not in the STIG...


December 5th, 2018 at 6:22 PM ^


I remember writing an essay in statistics class on the proper and improper uses of the Chi-squared test.

Now I don't remember what that even is.

But ask me a question on the Jaro–Winkler and Levenshtein distance functions in SAS, and I'll melt your poor damn ear for two hours.

We become idiot savants to stay gainfully employed.



December 5th, 2018 at 12:17 PM ^

This isn't surprising, considering this about the author, Ryan McClarren:

"While an undergraduate at the University of Michigan he won three awards for creative writing."

It's a certainty that McClarren was familiar with MGoBlog.

carolina blue

December 5th, 2018 at 12:36 PM ^

Let me help you with this (Wife does this line of work)

 It is the publishers that are scamming you. In some cases professors too (forcing you to buy their self-authored book). The publisher is the one that “changes” the book by switching the chapter arrangement around and some problems in the back of the book. Then, of course, they will no longer publish the previous edition. The bookstore can no longer buy the previous edition to sell to you, so the professor can’t use it. 

The bookstore and the university do get a cut, but it’s not what you think. The bookstore wants to keep reselling that used book at a much lower price because now they’re making a crap ton of profit, and you save a bunch if money. There’s no really reason that $200 stats book can’t be $80 used. The bookstore makes more from that $80 than the new $200 one. Don’t get be started on rentals. Those are even better for both parties. 

But, trust me, it’s the publishers. They control everything. 


December 5th, 2018 at 12:59 PM ^

The bookstore can no longer buy the previous edition to sell to you, so the professor can’t use it. 

Why not though?

I had a prof who pointed out what the differences were in the last several editions of the textbook he used, and said we could use any one of them if we wanted. 

I bought a used edition that was like 3 edits old from a guy I knew that was a couple of years older than me.  Saved an almost life-changing amount of money for me at the time. 

carolina blue

December 5th, 2018 at 1:27 PM ^

They can’t use it because they can’t adopt it. (Adopting is the process of the prof telling the bookstore what book they will use, which they are contractually obligated to do). In some cases you can, and in some cases the bookstore can find copies out there, but there’s no guarantees and the bookstore has a thousand other courses to order for, not just yours. So this extremely time consuming task is very difficult. 

Edit: that’s not to say the student can’t use it. Like you say, approach the professor and find out. I’m talking strictly from the bookstore side. The professor has to declare the official book that will be used this semester. If you decide to get an older one, by all means go for it. Sometimes that’s ok. Others, not so much.


December 5th, 2018 at 6:30 PM ^

Yeah, he still used an "official" textbook that the bookstore carried for $$$.  But he also showed us specifically where the old editions of it were "different" so that we could by them used if we wanted.

He probably did something wrong by doing that, but I'm old so he's probably dead.

Looks like he got away with it. 

Suck it, 1980's textbook publisher.



December 5th, 2018 at 12:43 PM ^

Ungh this was the worst when I was in history in the early aughts. A lot of mine used to have an exclusive deal with Shaman Drum. The last straw for me  was when  I went to go buy the books I would need for history of witchcraft and my bill was going to be $580.

By the end of college I was grits poor and making friends in every class so I could share their books. Only very late did I discover the "new" editions weren't actually necessary. I got the two main textbooks on British History for $10 each in Ypsi that still had their $60 Shaman Drum stickers under the new barcodes.


December 5th, 2018 at 1:49 PM ^

I had a History prof who asked us to buy 20 books from Shaman Drum. That semester, I learned that you can wait until a significant reading assignment or exam depends on that book, then buy it. I ended up with 5 out of the 20.

My English class on fantasy/sci fi writing, I had to buy all 20+. I'll never get back the hours that I spent reading Orlando.


December 5th, 2018 at 2:38 PM ^

Hahahaha, this is amazing.  Mostly in part because of the quote, but also due to the fact that my company licenses a ton of Springer content.  Time to look this one up on the platform.


December 5th, 2018 at 5:02 PM ^

Is Brady Hoke that well known to the academic community that he can be cited without any  explanatory line ("Brady Hoke, college football coach")?