George E. P. Box died in March 2013. He was a remarkably creative scientist and his celebrated professional career in statistics was always at the interface of science and statistics. George Box, J. Stuart Hunter and Cuthbert Daniel were instrumental in launching Technometrics in 1959, with Stu Hunter as the initial editor. Many of his articles were published in the journal. Therefore we think it is especially fitting that Technometrics should host this on-line collection with some of his most memorable and influential articles.
They also include articles from Journal of the American Statistical Association and Quality Engineering. Taylor & Francis is offering these articles freely in honor of George Box until December 31st, 2014. It is very sad that closed science and engineering journals block access to the great work created by scientists and engineers and most often paid for by government (while working for state government universities and with grants organizations like the National Science Foundation[NSF]). At least they are making a minor exception to provide the public (that should be unlimited access to these works) a limited access to these articles this year. These scientists and engineers dedicated their careers to using knowledge to improve society not to hide knowledge from society.
Some of the excellent articles make available for a short time:
- A Useful Method For Model-Building by George E.P. Box and William G. Hunter, Technometrics Volume 4 Issue 3 (1962)
- Science and Statistics by George EP Box, Journal of the American Statistical Association (1975)
- An Analysis for Unreplicated Fractional Factorials by George E.P. Box and R. Daniel Meyer, Technometrics (1986)
- Is Your Robust Design Procedure Robust? by George Box and Conrad Fung, Quality Engineering, (1994)
The “virtual issue” includes many more articles.
We really need to reform the practices that have the articles written by people like George Box, my father and many others while employed at public universities (and often publishing work supported by NSF and other government organizations) co-opted by journals. Those journals protect decades old business models and the expense of the advancement of science, engineering, statistics and society.
It is a horrible state of affairs that should not be tolerated. The poor business models were tolerable in 1960. Today they block public access to documents for which there is no justification to block – just providing benefit to an outdated journal publisher. Meanwhile the work of those scientists and engineers is largely lost and the public suffers. We should not tolerate those journals closing access to science.
Box on Quality and Discovery is a book that includes a large number of the articles by Box. Used copies are available for as little as $5 on amazon now. Improving Almost Anything (revised edition of his masterworks since 1982) is another book collecting his post 1982 articles (I think they duplicate most of the same material but I may be remembering wrong, and this may even just be an update on the same book). Improving Almost Anything is expensive ($60 used) but that is cheap compared to the journal publishers charging $10, $20 even $30 for one article.
Related: Harvard Steps Up Defense Against Abusive Journal Publishers – Fields Medalist Tim Gowers Takes Action To Stop Cooperating with Anti-Open Science Cartel – Howard Hughes Medical Institute Takes Big Open Access Step