Cameron Neylon wrote on the Science in the Open blog several weeks ago that the future of research communication is aggregation. In a new post, he talks about how to implement the "publication as aggregation":
Fundamentally the idea is that we publish fragments, and then aggregate these fragments together. The mechanism of aggregation is supposed to be an expanded version of the familiar paradigm of citation: the introduction of a paper will link to and cite other papers as usual, and these would be incorporated as links and citations within the presentation of the paper. But in addition the paper will cite the introduction. By default the introduction would be included in the view of the paper presented to the user, but equally the user might choose to only look at figures, only conclusions, or only the citations. Figures would be citations to data, again available on the web, again with a default visualization that might be an embedded active graph or a static image.