Sean Eddy, a member of the editorial board of BMC Bioinformatics, has won the Benjamin Franklin Award for Open Access in the Life Sciences.
The award is presented by the Bioinformatics Organization in honour of Benjamin Franklin, "One of the most remarkable men of his
time. Scientist, inventor, statesman, he freely and openly shared his
ideas and refused to patent his inventions." It is intended for those who have "promoted free and open access to the materials and methods used in the life sciences".
Sean’s committment to open access is demonstrated by his reaction to Celera’s 2001 publication of the human genome in Science, which prohibited free distribution of the sequence without restrictions. He says that as a consequence he now "uses Celera’s DVD as a coffee coaster".
In his acceptance speech, Sean highlighted one of the aims of open access, namely that “we want not just humans to be able to read the literature, but computers to be able to read the literature”. This is why at BioMed Central we make all of our articles available for download for data mining, and why we support MathML for submissions made using Publicon.
Sean joins previous winners Michael Ashburner, Ewan Birney, Lincoln Stein, James Kent and Mike Eisen. For more on this story, see here.
Well done Sean!