Every now and then at WUWT there is a hopeful comment (usually unanswered) asking about the mysterious society: "The Open Atmospheric Society" or OAS (but not the other OAS). There is irony in the name, because despite the word "open", as far as I am aware not a single person has ever been identified as a founder or board member or executive director or other employee. It's a secret open society.
But all that secrecy is about to end. Today's the day when all should be revealed. Here's some background to whet your appetite and tide you over while you wait with breathless anticipation.
Turn on the light?
Whatever he meant - the light hasn't been turned on at OAS yet. All that is about to change, according to its charter.
The mystery of the founder(s)
Apart from various WUWT readers who said they were signing on, there have only been five names associated with the OAS:
- Stephen and Dr. Mary Graves, were listed as seed funders, although the money may have come from Stephen And Mary Graves Familyfoundation
- John Coleman and Joseph D'Aleo, both of whom gave testimonials in the press release announcing its opening, but neither indicated they had any formal relationship with the "society".
- Anthony Watts announced it at WUWT, but did not indicate whether or not he had any formal association with the society or its founding, not even when asked directly. (Though as I recall he is listed on the web domain registers as the admin and general dogsbody for the web pages.)
Not counting the seed funding donors, who probably aren't all that interested, only two of the other three people qualify for full membership - Joseph D'Aleo and Anthony Watts. Anthony just sneaks in, I discovered, with his Fall et al paper, plus a very poor article in Nature Climate Change (not an original piece of work, just a comment on another paper), and by getting his name added to a very long list of authors of an obscure Essay in BAMS, which is a forgettable article that seems to have come from a workshop run by Roger Pielke Sr.
Verum in obscuro?
Though we may never find out who the founders are, you're all probably itching to learn about the people who'll be running the show. The Board of Directors would be in place by now (required by 1 January 2015). So we'll no doubt hear the big splash shortly. The Board will have appointed the Executive Director (or will be shortly) . (According to its Charter, the OAS commenced operation on 1 July 2014 and "There shall be a nomination process and election to form the OAS Board of Directors within 6 months of the OAS commencing operation.")
On the other hand, we haven't heard a peep from the OAS in months. Maybe it's changing its motto to Verum in Obscuro.
There's another possibility I guess.
The "days and weeks" roll by and still no OAS Journal?
One other thing that's not yet appeared is a journal. You may recall that back in September, Anthony promised:
It also aims to provide a professional peer reviewed publication platform to produce an online journal with a unique and important requirement placed up-front for any paper submitted; it must be replicable, with all data, software, formulas, and methods submitted with the paper. Without those elements, the paper will be rejected.
I'm thinking they might need to relax that requirement. It's a bit much to ask WUWT-ers to produce a replicable paper, with all data, software, formulas and methods that doesn't look like a complete joke. Not even Anthony Watts can recognise replicability when it hits him in the face.
The grand "press release" back in September, went on to state that:
Further announcements, calls for papers, and organizational notices will be posted in the coming days and weeks.
And the days and weeks have rolled on by with no further announcements, except for a lone, silly and wrong press release. Even then Anthony had to be prompted before putting any name to it.
So we wait patiently and not for much longer. The OAS and its journal might be a roaring success. When the OAS lifts its veil of secrecy (later today? early next week?) we may all be pleasantly surprised.