By William Steere
A 50th birthday is an efficient one to celebrate-old sufficient to be ex perienced and mature, yet now not so outdated as to be an vintage. And if the fifty years have spanned as a lot switch in medical affairs as has happened through the life of organic Abstracts it truly is without doubt time for a stocktaking. The leaders of biology in 1926 easily couldn't have imagined the condi tions of 1976. And few biologists energetic in 1976 can think what 1926 was once like. That used to be sooner than the explosive development of federal money for learn and improvement, sooner than the large swelling of graduate enrollments and levels, ahead of global conflict II, even ahead of the nice melancholy! a number of old-timers can take into account 1926, and invoice Steere will forgive me for calling him an old-timer. in spite of everything, he offers the proof himself; as a graduate scholar he met the 1st editor whilst organic Abstracts was once purely 3 years previous, and he has identified all its later editors and administra tive officials. What he doesn't say is that tn size of carrier to BIOSIS, in seniority, he stands between just a couple of previous and current individuals of the board of trustees; nor does he point out that not less than as usually as the other biologist he has been known as upon to serve on governmental and associational councils and committees facing coverage and approach about the abstracting, category, and dissemination of clinical wisdom. absolutely he used to be the fitting option to write this history.
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Additional info for Biological Abstracts / BIOSIS: The First Fifty Years. The Evolution of a Major Science Information Service
This has been done except for the index number of 1925. We have on hand over 300 unpublished abstracts of 1925 literature. These abstracts will be turned over to Biological Abstracts. While all assistance has been cheerfully given, I believe there will be a general feeling of satisfaction that the work is to be taken over by Biological Abstracts, which will be able to cover the field of bacteriology more completely. The editorial work has been done by both Major Hitchens and myself as an "extra duty," under many difficulties; and I am sure that placing the editing of Bacteriological Abstracts on a full time status should result in a more satisfactory service.
Without that sense of urgency, financial support, as well as the whole-hearted support of the zoological community, was much more HISTORICAL ORIGINS 17 difficult-if not impossible-to obtain. It was an era long before the emergence of the philosophy, both in the federal government and among leading foundations, that science was an integral and indispensable part of American culture and technology, and must therefore be supported financially. From the turn of the century forward until the 1940s, at least, the annual meetings of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) were the focal point of political action and scientific communication in the several sciences represented there, in spite of the most awkward and inconvenient time of year at which they were convened, always between Christmas and New Year's days.
At this meeting, the Permanent Board of Control, consisting of two representatives elected from each of the allied societies, began functioning for the first time. As agreed upon the previous year, several societies had elected one member for two years and another for four years, as indicated by the parentheses in the list that follows. It was further agreed that at the meetings to be held in December, 1920, a new member would be elected by each of the participating societies for a term of four years, and that such elections would be biennial thereafter.
Biological Abstracts / BIOSIS: The First Fifty Years. The Evolution of a Major Science Information Service by William Steere