Interview With an Author – Mitch Aide

Last week we published “Real-time bioacoustics monitoring and automated species identification” by T Mitchell Aide (of the University of Puerto Rico) et al. This fascinating paper describes a new system for identifying and monitoring the fluctuations of thousands of species in tropical ecosystems. It got a lot of great coverage including spots on the BBC, Wired, NBC News, and Science Friday among many others.

Given the attention the article generated, we thought it would be good to ask Dr Aide about his experience.


PJ: Tell us a bit about the research you published, and why it is interesting?

TMA: Our goal with this research was to develop a system of hardware and software that would help improve biodiversity monitoring.  We did this by combining off-the-shelf components to move audio recordings from the field to the project webpage in real-time and by developing software that allows the user to manage their recordings and create species-specific models to automate species identification.

PJ: And why did you choose to publish this research in PeerJ rather than some over venue?

TMA: My co-authors and I were tired of paying high prices so that our articles could be open access, plus I like the overall philosophy of the journal.  

PJ: How did you first hear about PeerJ?  

TMA: To be honest, I do not remember, but it was an article in a magazine or newspaper soon after the initial announcement of the journal.  From the beginning the goals of the journal made sense to me. I was also impressed by the people that signed on to the editorial board.  Without thinking twice I paid the fee for the investigator plan.


PJ: And what was your experience of the submission process? 

TMA: The submission process follows a logical order that was very user friendly. The layout is by far the cleanest of any journal I have submitted to. 

PJ: And your experience of the review and production processes? 

TMA: The review process was rapid and transparent.  I really like the idea that the reviews and responses are published along with the article.  Even if reviewers are anonymous, they along with editors and authors are likely to be more careful with their reviews and responses if they know that they will be published.  Hopefully, other journals will start publishing reviews and responses.

The production process and final products are excellent; working with the PeerJ team was a pleasure….they always responded rapidly and they were very helpful. 

PJ: What do you think to the HTML view of your article?

TMA: Another positive experience of publishing in PeerJ has been the metrics data.  It is fascinating to see what web sites are referring readers to the article. Given that the paper has only been out for a week, we can only see the number of views, but hopefully the metrics will also reflect citations.

PJ: Was there anything that surprised you with your overall experience?

TMA: The biggest surprise was the response the article received from the news media.  PeerJ helped developed and distribute the press release, and the impact was huge.

PJ: Did any of your colleagues express anything to you about your publication with PeerJ? And would you submit again?

TMA: Many colleagues were surprised that we published this paper in PeerJ, mainly because they had not heard of the journal.  I have told them that without a doubt, I will submit more papers to PeerJ, and I have encouraged colleagues to start doing the same.

PJ: Many thanks for your time!

If you like what you hear about PeerJ, then try us for yourself. PeerJ is open for your submissions at

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