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Systems and AIPP, we interact via the formatting of the articles that get submitted and published. One significant area that has been problematic and has resulted in author delays both in presubmission and in publication is the for- mat of LaTex files. There are a variety of compilers and formats available to LaTex users, but only a subset of these will work with the EM submission system and the AIPP production system. A LaTex template existed for JASA a decade ago, but it is long since obsolete and needs to be replaced. A temporary replacement was made available last year, but it needs major revision to suit modern needs. To eliminate this obstacle to our authors, ASA Publica- tions has contracted with Texnology, Inc., a well-regarded vendor, to provide a complete and up-to-date template for JASA, followed by JASA-EL.
6. One problem that also “flew under the radar” for a while was the gaps in our staffing that occurred due to sickness, vacations, and (necessary) attendance by Publications Of- fice personnel at the biyearly ASA meetings. Our staff- ing now is at the “just adequate” level (excepting any new initiatives), and loss of even one staff member for a week or more has a noticeable impact on our operations. Com- plaints about slowness increased during these periods. To deal with this, two solutions were implemented. First, a “backup/handoff ” plan was developed, written up, and for- mally distributed to all Publications Office personnel. This plan made sure that an absence of one key person could be covered by other staff, at least for a short time. For longer absences or multiple absences (such as meetings), a vendor was contracted for coverage. This plan has worked well in the two or three instances we have needed it (since last Fall) and will be further refined in the coming months.
7. A last piece of making sure that we are timely is to have good monitoring of our processes via what is usually known as a “dashboard.” This monitors the key metrics of journal perfor- mance, with speed being one of those. To date, we have as- sembled pieces of such a dashboard but have not completed it as an integrated entity. That is slated for Spring 2017 and hopefully will be done before this article is published.
To conclude this article, we fall back to a more conversation- al mode. First, we acknowledge that this material is probably a bit dry for many readers: it is a detail-oriented publications piece. For that, all we can ask is forgiveness because it is the nature of the beast.
Second, we note that this discussion has been a bit candid about our inner workings as a publications team and about JASA as a journal. That is quite intentional; we are proud to be a WYSIWYG (What You See Is What You Get) shop. This candidness allows us to address the third point more ef- fectively: soliciting your input. Now that you know in detail what we do, it is possible that you know of some better ways to approach things. If so, we would very much like to hear from you! We also pride ourselves on being open to input and (constructive) criticism, and if you have such, please send it to us. The best contact address is our Managing Edi- tor Liz Bury whose ASA email is lbury@acousticalsociety. org. Input sent via her address will be both thanked and con- sidered.
In the last analysis, our authors are the key components of our journals (and any others). Without them, we don’t exist, and so their having a good experience dealing with the pub- lishing process is crucial. We are committed to this, and we hope this article shows our commitment.
James Lynch obtained his BS in physics from the Stevens Institute of Technol- ogy (Hoboken, NJ) in 1972 and his PhD in physics from the University of Texas at Austin in 1978. He is currently a scien- tist emeritus at the Woods Hole Oceano- graphic Institution. Dr. Lynch is a Fel- low of the Acoustical Society of America
(ASA) and of IEEE and is the current editor in chief of ASA publications.
Adrian KC Lee obtained his BEng (elec- trical) from The University of New South Wales (Sydney, NSW, Australia) in 2002 and his ScD from the Harvard-MIT Di- vision of Health Sciences and Technol- ogy in 2007. He is currently an associate professor in the Department of Speech and Hearing Sciences and the Institute
for Learning & Brain Sciences at the University of Washing- ton (Seattle). He has received Young Investigator Program Awards from the Department of Defense and the Pathway to Independence Award from the National Institutes of Health.
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