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Fall 2000

Featured in this issue:

According to most of the plenary addresses of the 2000 All Scientists Meeting in Snowbird, Utah, ecological researchers must "think outside the box". Sociologists, modelers, climatologists, paleoecologists, remote sensing specialists, and science administrators all emphasized the need of ecological scientists to become comfortable with multiple disciplines and define questions that are significant in each of these fields simultaneously. Only through such mutual respect and understanding can multiple disciplines be merged into a coherent interdisciplinary research team. In this issue, we pick up this theme and encourage researchers and information technologists to move beyond the traditional role of information management as a data archiving service. We have a unique set of skills to offer ecologists, and those skills are more likely to be used when we define our expertise in relation to pressing ecological questions. The Fall 2000 issue of Databits presents the many ways information managers and technology experts are lending their unique talents to address complex ecological issues and problems today. We have included summaries from information management workshops held at the All Scientists Meeting in the hopes that the readership of this newsletter will envision applications of their own research across the multiple disciplines that comprise ecological science.

DataBits continues as a semi-annual electronic publication of the Long Term Ecological Research Network. It is designed to provide a timely, online resource for research information managers and to incorporate rotating co-editorship. Availability is through web browsing as well as hardcopy output. LTER mail list IMplus will receive DataBits publication notification. Others may subscribe by sending email to with two lines "subscribe databits" and "end" as the message body. To communicate suggestions, articles, and/or interest in co-editing, send email to

----- Co-editors: Ned Gardiner (Coweeta) and Brent Brock (Konza Prairie)