A year and a bit ago, we posted about Elsevier’s possibly-generous, possibly-cynical move to make all papers in its maths journals free to access four years after their publication. I lamented at the time that the only way to access the free papers was through Elsevier’s sanity-sapping ScienceDirect portal.
Well, not any more! The Mathematics Literature Project (which we never got round to posting about when it started, sorry) has collected together all the content that’s been made available and collected it into nice BitTorrent packages for anyone to download. The MLP page on Elsevier open access journals has links to torrents of the complete back-catalogues of 39 journals, going up to 2009. They intend to update the torrents yearly, as more papers become available under the permissive licence.
The MLP was set up by Scott Morrison, who deserves a big pat on the back for putting in so much tedious work downloading papers and compiling the torrents. The project is also analysing journals to get an idea of how beneficial Elsevier’s licence is – if papers are available on the arXiv anyway, it doesn’t matter too much what Elsevier does with their copies. So far, at least in the journals the project is concentrating on, the vast majority of papers are on the arXiv or authors’ webpages anyway.
Elsevier open access mathematics torrents at the Mathematics Literature Project
Mathematics Literature Project progress at the Secret Blogging Seminar
via David Roberts on Google+