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Weekly News Digest

December 17, 2001 — In addition to this week's NewsBreaks article and the monthly NewsLink Spotlight, Information Today, Inc. (ITI) offers Weekly News Digests that feature recent product news and company announcements. Watch for additional coverage to appear in the next print issue of Information Today. For other up-to-the-minute news, check out ITIís Twitter account: @ITINewsBreaks.

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CAS Completes Scientific Century Project

Chemical Abstracts Service (CAS;, a division of the American Chemical Society, announced that it has completed its Scientific Century project. Through this project, CAS has expanded the digital research environment for scientists by making the bibliographic and abstract information from the entire Chemical Abstracts (CA) collection dating back to 1907 available for searching through the STN, SciFinder, and SciFinder Scholar research tools.

CAS has made the historic literature available in the same online databases that cover the latest research. Now available in the CA and CAplus files are 3.8 million records from CA issues prior to 1967. This material, which spans 1907 to the present, brings the total number of online records to 20.5 million. About 789,000 of the earlier records are for patents, while 2.8 million are journal material. The balance of the records is for books, technical reports, conference proceedings, and dissertations.

In 1999 CAS began adding material from pre-1967 CA issues to its online databases. The massive undertaking required converting to electronic form a huge volume of information that was previously available only in print. With the completion of the project, researchers can use STN or SciFinder services to search this earlier literature via words in the abstract text and title, the publication title, author names, publication year, and more.

"Scientists always build upon the work of their predecessors, and earlier research can in many ways have immediate relevance for today," said Matthew J. Toussant, CAS director of editorial operations. "To mention just a few examples, the material we have now made available online contains pioneering studies in subjects as diverse as physics, antibiotics, and DNA. Though these records could have been found previously in the printed volumes of CA, making them immediately available for search and retrieval at the researcher's desktop can only increase their value and utility."

Source: Chemical Abstracts Service

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