About Edition Open Access

This website provides open access to the publications of the Max Planck Research Library for the History and Development of Knowledge, in accordance with the Berlin Declaration on Open Access to knowledge in the sciences and humanities, which was launched by the Max Planck Society in 2003. The aim is to disseminate the results of scholarly work – in accordance with the open-access paradigm – to a broad audience rapidly and at low cost. The volumes presented here are directed at scholars and students in a wide range of disciplines.

The initiative is currently supported by research departments of three Max Planck Institutes: the MPI for the History of Science, the Fritz Haber Institute of the MPG, the MPI for Chemical Ecology, and the MPI for Gravitational Physics (Albert Einstein Institute).

The Max Planck Research Library for the History and Development of Knowledge currently comprises four series: Studies, Proceedings, Textbooks and Sources. They present research results and the relevant sources in a new format, combining the advantages of traditional publications and the digital medium. The Sources series feature volumes based on the content of the open access repository ECHO - Cultural Heritage Online.

They present research results and the relevant sources in a new format, combining the advantages of traditional publications and the digital medium. The volumes are available both as printed books via print-on-demand and as online open-access publications. They present original scientific work submitted under the scholarly responsibility of members of the Editorial Board and their academic peers.

The volumes of the four series and their electronic counterparts are directed at scholars and students of various disciplines, as well as at a broader public interested in how science shapes our world. They provide rapid access to knowledge at low cost. Moreover, by combining print with digital publication, the four series offer a new way of publishing research in flux and of studying historical topics or current issues in relation to primary materials that are otherwise not easily available.

Edition Open Access differs from commercial open source initiatives in that it combines the advantages of minimal cost and accessibility for both author and reader. Authors are required to submit their papers according to the standards and requirements of Edition Open Access.

Do more with texts

As this animation shows, the idea behind open access involves more than just downloading texts and for this reason we employ a slightly different technical approach which we ask our authors and cooperation partners to comply with.

The indices, permanent links and the way in which facsimile pages [example] are presented, may serve as a small glimpse of what may be possible in the near future. The data that comprises the publications is structured and under control, and thus the foundation for Edition Open Access has been laid. We are currently evaluating and testing various approaches to develop a suitable online-working environment for our authors, as well as an API to facilitate the dissemenation of the publications.

To increase the scholarly value of the endeavour, the next steps involve connecting Edition Open Access to databases such as arXiv, and to virtual libraries such as Europeana and to web services such as Google Maps. This will help us to both enhance and expand our publications. In addition, various experiments with the Semantic web are being undertaken. The development team is happy to answer any comments and questions.

Why we use TeX in the form of XeLaTeX

One of the ways that Edition Open Access differs from other LaTeX-based workflows is that it utilizes the unicode-based engine XeTeX. This enables almost all unicode characters to be typeset and printed. The difference between standard TeX and XeTeX is minimal: a number of prevalent LaTeX-packages are not supported and thus substituted with more modern equivalents.

We have introduced specific notation for writing TeX commands in order to facilitate the conversion from TeX – a Turing complete programming language – into HTML – a limited markup language. This notation is given in form of a simple stylesheet that is based on familiar commands and environments. This procedure consolidates the data structure and provides the basis for this website, while also leaving room for improvement. It also guarantees the speed of the workflow since a well-formatted publication can go online anywhere between 5 and 90 minutes. More information is provided on the support page.

Series Editors

Ian T. Baldwin (Max Planck Institute for Chemical Ecology, Jena)
Gerd Graßhoff
(Department of Philosophy, Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin)
Jürgen Renn (Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin)
Dagmar Schäfer (Max Planck Institute for the History of Science, Berlin)
Robert Schlögl (Fritz Haber Institute, Berlin)
Bernard F. Schutz (Max Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics, Golm)

Editorial Board

Markus Antonietti (Max Planck Institute of Colloids and Interfaces, Golm)
Antonio Becchi (Humboldt University, Berlin)
Fabio Bevilacqua (University of Pavia)
William G. Boltz (University of Washington, Seattle)
Jens Braarvig (Oslo University)
Horst Bredekamp (Humboldt University, Berlin)
Jed Z. Buchwald (California Institute of Technology, Pasadena)
Olivier Darrigol (CNRS, Paris)
Thomas Duve (Max Planck Institute for European Legal History, Frankfurt am Main)
Mike Edmunds (Cardiff University)
Yehuda Elkana† (Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin)
Fynn Ole Engler (University of Rostock)
Robert K. Englund (University of California, Los Angeles)
Mordechai Feingold (California Institute of Technology, Pasadena)
Rivka Feldhay (Tel-Aviv University)
Gideon Freudenthal (Tel-Aviv University)
Paolo Galluzzi (Istituto e Museo di Storia della Scienza, Florence)
Kostas Gavroglu (University of Athens)
Mark Geller (Freie Universität Berlin)
Domenico Giulini (University of Hannover)
Günther Görz (University of Erlangen)
Gerd Graßhoff (Humboldt University, Berlin)
James Hough (University of Glasgow)
Manfred Laubichler (Arizona State University, Tempe)
Glenn Most (University of Chicago)
Klaus Müllen (Max Planck Institute for Polymer Research, Mainz)
Pier Daniele Napolitani (University of Pisa)
Alessandro Nova (Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz)
Hermann Parzinger (The Prussian Cultural Heritage Foundation, Berlin)
Dan T. Potts (Institute for the Study of the Ancient World, New York)
Mark Schiefsky (Harvard University)
Sabine Schmidtke (Freie Universität Berlin)
Circe Silva da Silva (Federal University of Espírito Santo, Vitoria)
Ana Simões (University of Lisbon)
Dieter Stein (University of Düsseldorf)
Richard Stephenson (Durham University)
Mark Stitt (Max Planck Institute of Molecular Plant Physiology, Potsdam)
Noel M. Swerdlow (California Institute of Technology, Pasadena)
Liba Taub (University of Cambridge)
Martin Vingron (Max Planck Institute for Molecular Genetics, Berlin)
Scott Walter (University of Nancy)
Norton Wise (University of California, Los Angeles)
Gerhard Wolf (Kunsthistorisches Institut in Florenz)
Rüdiger Wolfrum (Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law, Heidelberg)
Gereon Wolters (University of Konstanz)
Zhang Baichun (Chinese Academy of Sciences, Beijing)