B.C. is Before What? | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 86 Issue 37 | p. 4 | Letters
Issue Date: September 15, 2008

B.C. is Before What?

Department: Letters

To augment Douglas A. Smith's letter (C&EN, Aug. 11, page 6), a good number of people I know, both chemists and nonchemists, are being only half-humorous (as I am now) when they agree that the interpretation of the abbreviation "B.C." is more meaningful these days when it is expanded into "Before Computers."

In fact, I sometimes wonder why ACS has never promoted the interpretation of that abbreviation as "Before Chemistry."

There is also a contingent (rather small, I suppose), composed of those chemists who specialize in the use of multivariate mathematical algorithms to interpret data in order to perform chemical analysis, who would be comfortable with the interpretation of it as "Before Chemometrics."

Howard Mark
Suffern, N.Y.

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