Unsolicited Answers to Rhetorical Questions

From something I saw in Facebook recently:


Q: Will NextBio do away with PubMed?
A: Absolutely not. In order to even have a chance at making PubMed irrelevant, a 3rd-party tool would have to be free. I believe I have played with the vast majority of 3rd-party PubMed/MEDLINE tools available (see this post category for details).

Q: …will Pubget do away with PubMed?
A: In some libraries for some users, PubGet will be a the preferred option. Will it make PubMed irrelevant? Good lord, no.

K adds:

Suspect they use PubMed to get their lit content, esp since they say they include all the full text from PubMed Central.

K is absolutely right. Both PubGet and NextBio get their data through NCBI API tools.

Now, if GoPubMed (free) did LinkOut and/or made PDF retrieval as easy as PubGet (free) does and marketed it well…that could threaten to make PubMed irrelevant.

However, PubMed makes the index of the world’s medical literature available to millions and it used worldwide as an essential healthcare tool. Ask yourself: Do you want to trust a private corporation to take good and ethical care of such an important public good? I don’t. I’d rather trust the NLM.

One thought on “Unsolicited Answers to Rhetorical Questions

  1. Just a note- the literature search function and much of the other search functions on NextBio are FREE. Yes, to see detailed results requires a log-in, but the registration is FREE.

    Some of the advanced features are not free – but there is a free trial available (advance functions = data upload, advanced signature to signature queries, extra security etc.

    Whether NextBio will ever replace Pubmed- I can’t say – I’d say NextBio is trying to enhance Pubmed not necessarily replace it. I have not tried PubGet so cannot compare – but it looks pretty useful as well. I welcome anyone whose goal is to make science more efficient and to make sense of the huge tangle of data out there. Competition makes for a better product ^_~ . In anycase, NextBio is still building it tools and improving.