Open Access News

News from the open access movement

Monday, March 31, 2008

GenBank will be 25

Next week GenBank will turn 25.  (Thanks to Francis Ouellette.)  From the the announcement:

For a quarter century, GenBank has helped advance scientific discovery worldwide.  The nucleic acid sequence database was established by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in 1982.  Since its creation, the GenBank database has grown at an exponential rate.  Amazing as it may seem, in 1984, the entirety of GenBank’s data was published in a two volume hardcover book.  Today, if the current contents of GenBank’s database were printed, it would fill more than 300 pickup trucks with paper....

GenBank was one of the earliest bioinformatics community projects on the Internet promoting open access communications among bioscientists.  In 1992, the GenBank project transitioned to the newly created National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI) within NIH where it resides today....

PS:  The NIH's two-day birthday party conference for GenBank is already full.

Update.  Good point from Glyn Moody:

The received wisdom is that open source begat open access, which begat open data, and in broad outline that's true enough. But in one respect it's quite wrong: the first, and arguably most important open data store was set up fully 25 years ago, and is still going from strength to strength....