Webometric Thoughts

February 20, 2008

Researcher ID: A password nightmare!

Filed under: Citation analysis,ResearcherID,Web of Science — admin @ 7:33 pm

Whilst searching on ISI Web of Knowledge I came across ResearcherID. It basically assigns you a unique identifier to which you then add your publications, ‘to aid in solving the common problem of author misidentification’. It’s a good idea, but it has been executed badly. Even the relatively simple process of creating a password was badly worked.

These days it seems as though we all have a million different accounts, and as such we have a choice of either writing all our passwords down (stupid), using the same password everywhere (stupid), or creating our own system for establishing passwords (sensible). Unfortunately when web sites have stringent stipulations about the form of the passwords, our extremely sensible password allocation systems soon fall apart. Researcher ID has the most stupid password stipulations I have yet to come across:letters, numbers, length…and symbols!
Password Guidelines

Must be 8 or more characters (no spaces) and contain:
– at least 1 numeral: 0 – 9
– at least 1 alpha character, case-sensitive
– at least 1 symbol: ! @ # $ % ^ * ( ) ~ `{ } [ ] | \
Example: 1sun%moon


Additional annoyances include: rubbish search fields; and the fact it only adds records directly from ISI Web of Science, not ISI Proceedings. The site should also use the fact that researchers want to have their citations recognised, and rather than only showing the citations identified by WoS they could enable users to match up the results from cited reference searches.

Nonetheless I have created a basic page with some of my outputs. Although I doubt very much whether I will remember the password long enough to update the page.

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