The Internet has dramatically changed both the way we do and share research and the way we access and preserve information.
In a print-on-paper age all you could publish was a summary of a research or experiment, in the form of a scientific article. The web now allows us to make public the whole dataset of raw data which stand behind the research or the experiment: we are in the transition between “scientific articles” and “scientific records”, which contain more. New concepts like “nanopublications” or “enhanced publications” were born; more and more journals such as Nature Genetics require authors to publish data alongside the article; and open databases are more and more common. . . .
Open data are the pillars of open science, which many scientists have long been campaigning for. This paper is aimed at presenting the benefits of open access to research data, for science itself, for researchers, for citizens, for enterprises, for society as a whole. . . .