September 9, 1974

Executive Committee of the American Institute of Physics

Minutes of Meeting

Members Present: H. Richard Crane – Chairman, Joseph A. Burton, Laurence W. Fredrick, W. W. Havens, Jr., E. Leonard Jossem, H. William Koch, Jarus W. Quinn

Non-Voting Participants: Robert T. Beyer (ASA), John C. Miller (SOR)

AIP Staff Present: H. William Koch, Director; Sidney Millman, Acting Secretary; G. F. Gilbert, Treasurer; Lewis Slack, Assoc. Director for General Activities; Robert H. Marks, Assoc. Director for Publishing; Dorothy M. Lasky, Assistant to the Director; Mary M. Johnson, Assistant to the Acting Secretary

Chairman Crane called the meeting to order at 9:00 a.m.

1. Minutes

Millman stated that he is departing somewhat from previous methods of distributing the minutes of the Executive Committee meetings. Instead of mailing final minutes of a previous meeting to all Governing Board members and others in time for the next meeting of the Executive Committee, Mary Johnson has mailed a draft of the August 14 minutes only to the members of the Executive Committee. The final minutes will not be generally distributed until after they have been approved. We intend to follow this procedure in the future. This will insure our getting corrections to the minutes not only from the participating AIP staff and from easily accessible Executive Committee members but from all members of the Committee before distribution.

After hearing Jossem’s proposed corrections, the minutes of the Executive Committee meeting of August 14, 1974, including these corrections, were approved.

2. Computerized Publishing

Marks presented a fairly extensive review of the computerized activities in his Branch broken down into the following components.

  1. Computerized Article Heads

    1. Status. The use of computerized heads and tails for the JOURNAL OF APPLIED PHYSICS was started as an experiment in 1972 under NSF funding. The experiment was a success and in 1973 the rest of the AIP and Society journals were added to the “heads and tails” program. The program was organized so that none of the journal schedules were adversely affected. Heads composed during 1973 by computerized methods ranged from a low of 25% for PHYSICAL REVIEW-C to 100% for JAP. For 1974 it was decided to drop computerized tails. The “heads” program is now on a full production basis with all article heads being produced for practically all the AIP and Society journals. Difficulties in meeting the required fast production schedule of PR-C were encountered. However, the journal has not been delayed because of this and the September issue of PR-C had almost 60% of the article heads computer photocomposed.

      Havens stated that some of the PR editors do not want to use the photocomposed heads. Marks replied that the editor of PR-C objected to the appearance on aesthetic grounds, since in many cases there is a different density of type when corrections are stripped in manually during production. The density of the photocomposed heads is now closely monitored and the number of required strip-in corrections is much less. The cost of the heads program is running right on budget for 1974.

    2. Relation to Output Products. Marks reminded the Committee of an important advantage of computerized heads in that many output products are made possible with this program. Of current interest are (1) Journal Indexes (2) PR Abstracts (3) Abstracts for Nuclear Science Abstracts (4) Current Physics Index and (5) Future Input of abstracts to other secondary services such as INSPEC and Engineering Abstracts.

      Journal index production is streamlined and it is possible to bind the index in with the last issue of the journal volume. The June 15, 1974 issue of APPLIED PHYSICS LETTERS with its index was shown as an example. The PR Index has been delayed in order to make the style and format changes requested by the PR editors. However, those changes have by now been made and sample pages with computer printout of the author and subject index of PR will be submitted to the editors.

      PR ABSTRACTS is now photocomposed from the heads tape and the October 1st camera-ready pages were delivered two days ahead of schedule. The cost is less than typewriter composition and there is, in addition, a saving in printing and paper because of the tighter page format.

      NUCLEAR SCIENCE ABSTRACTS is another use of these heads which was started in 1973. We have delivered more than 3,500 abstracts to the Atomic Energy Commission at $12 each since the first of this year. We are in the process of determining what the actual cost is in order to justify the $12 price to the AEC.

      The CURRENT PHYSICS INDEX is the fourth use. This quarterly publication planned for 1975 will contain the abstracts of all AIP published articles (including the Soviet translation journals) classified according to the Physics & Astronomy Classification System (PACS). It will also serve as a printed index to the archival and Current Physics Microfilm.

    3. Future of SPIN Tape. Marks noted that the Publications Division is presently keyboarding about 14,000 articles from non-AIP journals for CURRENT PHYSICS TITLES and the SPIN tape. It dropped the article tails in 1974. Since CPT will not be published in 1975, the only use for these articles would be in SPIN which now contains about 30,000 articles. There are presently eight SPIN subscribers for an annual income of about $20,000. The keyboarding and indexing of these 14,000 non-AIP articles would cost about $70,000. We have the permission of these non-AIP publishers to include their abstracts in CURRENT PHYSICS ADVANCE ABSTRACTS and SPIN.

      One possibility for 1975 is to produce an abbreviated SPIN tape containing only abstracts of AIP journals and make it available to anyone who wants in for internal use at cost (about $300 to $500 per year). Publishers of secondary information products such as INSPEC and Engineering Index would be offered its use at a flat rate per article. Others selling computerized information services from computer tape would receive it free of charge in return for a suitable royalty based on end use.

      There was some discussion of what the abbreviated tape should be called. One suggestion was to drop the name SPIN and call it CURRENT PHYSICS INDEX. However, with the additional articles included for NSA (from Astrophysical Journal, Annals of Physics, Journal of Geophysical Research, etc.) the computer tape will not have exactly the same contents as CPI. In addition, it was pointed out that the name SPIN is now well known and should, if possible, be retained. It would, however, be made clear to all present and future users of the tape that the journal coverage of SPIN has been greatly reduced.

      After considerable discussion of the possible future use and the problems of marketing an abbreviated SPIN, it was decided that the AIP will only put AIP and Society articles on SPIN in addition to the extra journal articles required for NSA. Present subscribers will be notified of this change as soon as possible and offered the option of obtaining the 1975 abbreviated version of SPIN for about $500 to cover the cost of copying, tape, reels, and postage. The following motion was passed:

      MOVED that the AIP put on tape only the information obtained from AIP- and Society-published articles and those extra abstracts which are necessary for NSA.

    4. Relation to other Organizations Marks reported that AIP has been asked by IEEE for permission to solicit Society members in promoting their products. This is the subject of a memo dated 3 September 1974 from Koch to the Executive Committee which was distributed at the meeting. The potential problems of permitting another membership organization to directly solicit AIP Society members was pointed out. It was noted that IEEE charges $50 per 1,000 names compared to our charge of $30 per 1,000 names. Burton suggested we wait until this subject is discussed by the APS Publications Committee later in the week. Under our present policy, AIP would obtain approval from the particular APS division or Society involved, and would supply the mailing list. After discussion, it was decided not to implement any changes in present policy and procedures governing the use of mailing lists.

  2. Computerized Text Composition

    Marks reported that AIP had some bad experience with computer photocomposition of the first four 1974 issues of PHYSICS OF FLUIDS. There were high hopes for the process but the contractor ran short of cash and had to shut down production. The journal was switched back to monotype composition for the remaining 1974 issues. In 1975 PF will be typewriter composed.

    AIP has applied for a patent on the keyboard and related computer programs developed at Brookhaven by APS with NSF support for composing text with built up mathematics. Roesser and Associates signed the patent application in return for a royalty-free non-exclusive license. AIP hopes to encourage other firms, particularly keyboard manufacturers, to develop the process further.

  3. Related Issues

    1. Japanese Production of JAP and PR Cumulative Indexes

      Attention was directed to a letter from Kantor, Shaw & Davidoff, attorneys, re Nichigai Associates (U.S.A.) Inc. which had been distributed, concerning a cumulative subject and author index to JOURNAL OF APPLIED PHYSICS, APPLIED PHYSICS LETTERS, and PHYSICAL REVIEW. Nichigai has already composed this index without permission and are offering to pay us a 20% royalty with a promise that they will not do it again. It would cost us about $50,000 to produce a competing product and would take three to four months. It was stated that we should not do anything to encourage this firm. Another suggestion was to authorize preparation of an index covering JAP and APS for the years 1970-75, for which the information will already be available in computer form, and start advertising it now. Marks said that we could probably sell our version for about $100. The following two motions were passed:

      1. MOVED that we accept the Japanese proposal on JAP and APL.

      Burton abstained and suggested that Marks hold off on a reply to the Japanese until APS makes its recommendation on PR.

      1. MOVED that Marks be asked to prepare a plan for a system of cumulative indexes for all AIP and Society journals.

    2. AIP Membership in ICSU Abstracting Board

      Koch raised the question of our continued membership in ICSU/AB in view of the cutbacks we have made in our secondary products. It is also in line with the general feeling he has sensed that AIP management should stick more specifically to direct service requests from its Member Societies. There are nineteen organizations and eight member countries represented. John Ziman is the present IUPAP representative. The membership cost is $1,300 a year on a calendar year basis. We could therefore wait until October l to decide, if the Committee so wishes. Koch also mentioned some of the advantages derived in being a member and being kept informed even if AIP is not going to be in the abstracting business. Burton encouraged Koch to write up a two-page outline of the advantages and suggested deferring a decision until the next meeting.

    3. AIP Participation in International Advisory Board on Secondary Services

      Koch called attention to a memo of J. M. Ziman proposing the establishment of a policy committee to producers of secondary services in physics. Havens pointed out that it would be nice to have a statement about how it is going to work. Koch indicated that such a statement will certainly be developed if this suggestion is approved. This led to the passage of the following motion:

      MOVED that AIP proceed along the lines outlined by Koch to encourage John Ziman in getting an Advisory Board established.

    4. Reprint Book Agreement of Dowden, Hutchinson & Ross, Inc.

      Marks called attention to the latest "Memorandum of Agreement" by Dowden, Hutchinson & Ross, Inc. and asked for approval for AIP journals to be included in the agreement and for authorization to contact the other Societies for similar arrangements. The following motion was passed to encourage Marks to proceed as outlined:

      MOVED that AIP be authorized to sign the agreement with Dowden, Hutchinson & Ross, Inc., granting permission to use AIP journal articles in their book publishing program; and to contact Member Societies for permission to include their journals in the agreement.

    5. Rental of Stony Brook Space

      Marks called attention to a copy of a letter from T. A. Pond, Executive Vice President of the State University of New York (SUNY) at Stony Brook. SUNY has first-class space in the basement of their physics laboratory. It is well-lighted, air-conditioned, and the rental is very favorable. AIP presently has 4,000 square feet at Brookhaven National Laboratory and there is not room for expansion to meet future needs. The initial move would be to transfer the present AIP Brookhaven staff which produces about 20,000 pages a year. Next, the staff would be expanded to handle typewriter composition of PR-B (about 10,000 pages per year). Then additional AIP and Society journals would be added with an eventual output of some 40,000 pages per year. This would be an interim move and does not solve the long-range problem of centralizing all of AIP’s publishing activities. The following motion was passed:

      MOVED that the staff be authorized to contact APS for permission to move the AIP operation from Brookhaven to Stony Brook. If APS concurs that this move would also be in the best interests of APS, then the SUNY offer of space should be accepted by AIP.

    6. Meeting with AAPT on Publishing of TPT & Nonmember Subscription Fulfillment

      Koch read a draft letter to A. A. Strassenburg dated September 9, 1974, copy attached as Exhibit A. He noted the breakdown of items in nonmember subscription fulfillment to be performed by AAPT and AIP. The AIP staff views this as very much of an experiment and will keep the Executive Committee advised as to its progress. Under the terms of our service agreement, this option would have to be offered to all Member Societies when it moves out of the experimental phase. We are anxious to accommodate AAPT.

      Jossem MOVED that the procedure outlined by Koch be approved and the motion passed.

    7. Soviet Response to AIP Proposals on Photocopying & Translating

      Koch called attention to a letter dated August 28, 1974, from Mesh Kniga, copies of which had been distributed. They want world distribution rights of the Russian-language versions, and this is agreeable to us. He displayed a copy of “U.S. – U.S.S.R. Copyright Negotiations on Scientific and Technical Journals” published by NSF and said he would distribute it to members of this Committee. (Copies mailed on September 13, 1974.) The following motion was passed:

      MOVED that the latest proposed agreement with Mesh Kniga for the period June 1973 to the end of 1974 be approved.

The meeting was adjourned for luncheon at 12:10 p.m. and reconvened at 12:45 p.m.

3. AIP Advisory Committees

Koch opened the discussion on this subject by reminding the members of Burton’s suggestion that AIP advisory committees be made advisory to the Governing Board, and expressed the thought that this would be of great value. He called attention to a document entitled “AIP Advisory Committees” which he had prepared, containing a possible grouping of the various advisory committees. Burton pointed out that his main objective was to try to improve the coupling of the Governing Board with AIP management. It could provide Board members with a more direct involvement in the functioning of AIP. This would be facilitated if Governing Board members are members of each of these committees. Jossem expressed concern about having too many committees reporting directly to the Board and that it would leave a Governing Board meeting consisting of little else but committee reports.

Havens would recommend to the other AIP Societies the mechanism used by APS to keep the Director of AIP informed on APS activities, that is, making him a member of the APS Council without vote.

This led to the passing of the following motion:

MOVED that the AIP staff be encouraged to propose a reorganization of the committee structure taking into account the various suggestions made.

4. Appointment of New Director of Physics History Division

Koch opened the discussion on this subject by referring to Martin Klein’s letter of August 27, 1974, giving the results of the search committee’s efforts (copy attached as Exhibit B), and to a draft of an appointment letter to Spencer Weart resulting from a discussion with Havens (copy attached as Exhibit C). Koch also noted a memo from s. A. Goudsmit on this subject, copy attached as Exhibit D.

Havens noted that in his poll of members of the APS Executive Committee he found that all the members agreed that the Director of the History Program should "tend to his knitting" and not go off on tangents. This is in agreement with the sentiments expressed in the Goudsmit memo. In addition, some suggested waiting until the next meeting of the APS Executive Committee for more discussion. Havens did not recommend that we wait. Jossem felt that the paragraphs in the offer letter seem to be adequate safeguards. After further discussion, it was agreed that Koch could proceed with the mailing of this proposed letter to Weart.

5. Subscription Fulfillment

  1. Meeting with Advisory Committee on Subscription Handling

    Gilbert reported that a meeting of this committee with the AIP staff took place on August 15 and that a draft of Strassenburg’s report on Subscription Fulfillment was received this morning. After Strassenburg receives comments and corrections from meeting attendees, he will send copies of the report to all Governing Board members. It is expected to be in the hands of the Executive Committee in time for the next meeting. Millman, who is a member of the Advisory Committee on Subscription Handling and who was present at the August 15 meeting, said that he concurred with the general conclusions that AIP has made reasonable progress in implementing some of the recommendations contained in the Von Simson report.

  2. Subscription Billing Schedule

    Gilbert called attention to a memo of John DiCaro dated September 5, 1974, giving detailed schedules for billing and indicated that he did not expect to encounter any problems unless there are unforeseen equipment malfunctions.

6. Status of Responses to LRPC Report

Crane reported on the progress he was making in summarizing the various responses to the Long-Range Planning Committee report. He found that responses from individuals who were not responding officially contained just as much good information as the official responses from Society officers. One can group the responses in such categories as:

  • Comments about the report itself – the form, spirit, etc.
  • Comments about the purpose and charter of AIP
  • AIP-Society relations
  • Financing of AIP activities
  • Governance, conduct and form of the Governing Board and Executive Committee meetings
  • Financial reporting
  • General Activities
  • Definition of service

Crane believes that there is no need to dwell on comments about the report itself as we do not intend to patch it up and publish it. He feels that the only thing the Governing Board can do is to respond to certain questions about policy. He therefore tried to formulate several questions which can be put to the Board for discussion. Some questions might be, "What our purposes should be and what efforts should be allocated between the various purposes." Other questions might revolve on AIP-Society relations, financing, the matter of priorities, operation and conduct of the Board and Executive Committee, etc.


Crane also felt that the Institute is not a federation. Part of it is like a cooperative farm store: the other part is more like a foundation. The same staff, Board of Directors, and Executive Committee runs both operations and a good deal of the difficulty has arisen because of a difference of opinion as to the allocation of Board and staff effort between those two activities. We might ask the Board if we should de-emphasize the foundation part and put more emphasis on the service part. Crane believes that the Societies should pay for what they get and get what they pay for, and that the "foundation" aspect of the Institute should be kept separate.

Another question might be whether AIP should have individual members, and have some of its Board members elected by the constituency, thereby reducing the number of representatives appointed by Societies and increasing members-at-large. Burton felt strongly that the constituency of AIP is its Member Societies. One might argue that income from AIP-owned journals ought to be used to subsidize Society journals, but Crane believes that there is strong support for the Societies to continue to pay the costs of their own services.

Crane noted further that there are a few points on which the responses are loud and clear and one is: responsibilities of the Societies to AIP. Another is: much greater emphasis on services.

Jossem thought that the Board would be interested in hearing Crane’s summary statement on the responses so as to get a feel for which way the wind is blowing. Burton suggested that the Executive Committee get copies of all the official responses, and Crane agreed that this could be done. (Copies mailed on September 24, 1974.)

7. Proposal to Rescind Resolution re AIP Secretary

Crane reminded the Committee that this subject came up at the last meeting. He thinks that the original action was out of order and he would be inclined to ask the Board if they wish to have a proposal made for a new bylaw. The general sentiment seemed to be in favor of not bringing it up as an agenda item at the Governing Board meeting.

8. Resolution re Wallace Waterfall

Millman pointed out that copies of a proposed resolution were sent to members of the Committee prior to the meeting with the suggestion that we wait for the whole Board to act. Everyone agreed that this is a good procedure to follow.

9. Request of 1974 Nominating Committee to Propose Waterfall Replacement on the AIP Executive Committee

Havens reported that the Nominating Committee had anticipated this and recommended that Robert T. Beyer be made a member of the Executive Committee in the event Waterfall was unable to serve. It still makes the same recommendation. It was also noted that a recent letter from the Acoustical Society informed us that Martin Greenspan would replace Waterfall on the Governing Board.

10. Proposals for Governing Board Agenda

Koch proposed that we review the roles of AIP, Member Societies, the Governing Board, Executive Committee, and staff. We would also include such items as a six-year Manpower plan, computerized publishing, and reports from advisory committees. Crane observed that, in the publications area, we really have some drastic things to report. Jossem suggested that we might put up an exhibit of what is going on in the Publishing Program; for example, what happens to an article from the time it is received until it is published. Koch mentioned the possibility of having Norman Bradbury tell us about the National Academy of Sciences and its Assembly of Physical and Mathematical Sciences.

Burton wondered whether at some future time we might combine the Assembly and Governing Board meetings, with the Society officers sitting in as observers. Koch felt that the function of the Assembly is to give the Society officers an opportunity to blow off steam and that Burton’s proposed arrangement might inhibit them.

11. Fiscal Policy Committee

Gilbert observed that in October, we will have to decide what action to take with respect to Quoted Prices for the fourth quarter of 1974. Quinn believed that the Governing Board should be asked to decide on the fundamental question of using Quoted Prices in 1975. Gilbert noted that we can decide at the Fiscal Policy Committee October meeting what we want to do with the variance. The course of action we take will be influenced by what is acceptable to our auditor. Burton added that it would have to be acceptable to the Societies, too. There was a general agreement that this is obviously a topic to be discussed at the Governing Board meeting and that the reports from the Fiscal Policy Committee should be accompanied by a specific recommendation.

The meeting was adjourned at 3:35 p.m.