Chemical Information Bulletin, Volume 52, Number 1, Spring 2000 Page: 1
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Message from the Chair
Greetings! It is a great honor and pleasure to serve you as Chair of this Division, of which I have been a member for
over twenty years. Writing this in the first month of the new millennium makes me even more aware than usual of
the passage of time and the changes that accompany it. Since the Division was first formed, we have seen paperbased
systems augmented (and to some degree replaced) by card-sorter systems, batch-processing computer
systems, text-based online retrieval systems, graphical online retrieval systems, and most recently, Web-based
online services. Computers have increased in power and capacity while, at the same time, shrinking in size until
they now fit in the palm of the hand. Chemical software systems have increased in power and complexity until new
sub-disciplines of chemistry, undreamed of even twenty years ago, are now part of routine research procedure.
Electronic publishing and distribution of research results is currently revolutionizing the way chemists
It is indeed time to reflect on this change and to consider whether the Division reflects the interests of its members
as well as it did, say, twenty years ago when microcomputers were in their infancy, telecommunication networks
scarcely existed, and the World Wide Web did not exist. I want to make it my chief mission in this, the first year of
the new millennium, to initiate and hopefully conclude a major review of the aims and objectives of the Division.
Already I have discovered an enormous inbuilt inertia to change resulting from the bureaucratic procedures of ACS
and its divisions and I realize that my ambition is perhaps larger than my capacity to deliver in a brief twelve month
period as Chair. Moreover, I don't wish to imply that the Division hasn't changed and adapted over the last twenty
years - it has! However, the changes taking place in the environment in which we work are now so large and farreaching
that I believe we are obliged to pause for reflection.
So what are the questions we should be asking ourselves? We need to know more about who you, the members of
CINF, are, what you do, and what you expect from the Division. In the last year, we have been able to discover, for
the first time I believe, the distribution of age and length of membership of the division. To our delight we discover
that although we have many long-term members, there are many more who have joined the Division in the last five
years. However, in the recent past the members who are active in the Division committees probably haven't
reflected the views of younger group members too well. I am delighted that in 2000 some of the new committee
members do indeed come from this group.
I invite all of you to contact me over the new few weeks to let me know your opinions. What should we do to make
the Division more relevant to the 21St century? Is the name of the Division right? Should we change the name to the
Cheminformatics Division? Should we consider proposing a merger with the Division of Computers in Chemistry
(COMP)? (Some of our most successful conference programs are those in which we participate with COMP.) Are
we organizing the right symposia at national ACS meetings? Please let me know about your interests, concerns and
views by e-mail (email@example.com). I can't promise that I will answer every message but I do promise that
all your views will be considered.
This year I am facing an exceptional challenge due to the physical distance and the number of time zones which
separate me from many of you (although a significant number of members are not U.S.-based). As the first CINF
Chair not to be based in the U.S., I will depend even more than usual on the members of CINF committees. I want
to thank publicly all committee members for your hard work and apologize in advance for the extra difficulties
which will arise from my physical remoteness from many of you. I also want to acknowledge the hard work which
Grace Baysinger has put in during her term in office, and to thank her in advance for the continued support I know
she will give me this year.
2000 promises to be an exciting year for the Division. We have some great programs planned for San Francisco and
Washington (thanks to the hard work of Andy Berks and his committee). I look forward to seeing many of you in
San Francisco, and hope to meet many of you at the Welcome Reception on Sunday evening and hopefully at
another event which we are trying to organize for Tuesday evening. Watch this space!
2000 CINF Chair
CHEMICAL INFORMATION BULLETIN
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American Chemical Society. Division of Chemical Information. Chemical Information Bulletin, Volume 52, Number 1, Spring 2000, periodical, Spring 2000; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc5631/m1/3/: accessed June 24, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; .