Binary 2D Ontology of Scientific Papers

positive is up or right
Presentation (English)
Content
Hidden treasures
Seminal or solid work
Time-wasters
Distractions

This table shows a way of thinking about scientific papers. The ontology uses two dimensions to sort papers into four cells. Obviously it could be refined with more values than "positive" and "negative" and labels for the extra cells. Also, the reality is always much more complicated with many dimensions in play and with papers that are part this and part that for various dimensions. However the main advantage of the basic 2D and binary approach is clarity. In most cases the main cells will have natural labels, though I'm not sure I've selected the best labels for this one.

The "Content" dimension is about the quality of the Positive means the science is important and accurate, while negative means something is wrong there. Good science at the top, errors or worse goes to the bottom.

The "Presentation" dimension is about how the material is presented, with "(English)" because my own focus is largely on the quality of the English, even though presentation is a much broader topic. If the presentation as good, the kind of paper that is worth imitating to present scientific results, then it's positive on the right side. If not, it goes left.

The most interesting cell is probably upper left, the "Hidden treasures" cell. This is what happens when good work is described badly. In the worst case, the person who did the work may lose deserved credit when someone else takes the same ideas, improves and refines them, and then gets more recognition for publishing a paper in the upper right corner. It's one of those LCD things. You need both strong content and a strong presentation for maximum impact.

Just for context and comparison and to give credit where it is due, here is the first such ontology as I remember receiving it from Professor Bill Martin at Rice University around 1975. The context was his introduction to sociology class, where the people are the entities being classified.

positive is up or right
Goals
Rules
Ritualist
Conformist
Rebel
Innovator

The analysis is similar to the first table. In those days I considered myself primarily a ritualist who was indifferent to the goals, and even rejected the goal of making lots of money, but who regarded the rules as important. The conformist should be obvious enough, along with the rebels. The innovator is a bit complicated because serious innovators might be going so far against the rules as to become criminals even though they are pursuing the sanctioned goal of making lots of money. Dr Martin may have used a different label for that bottom right cell.