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September 28, 2006 [posted]

MEDLINE® Turns 35!

october 2006 marks the 35th anniversary of MEDLINE (MEDLARS® Online). How far have we come in 35 years? Let's open the two time capsules comparing MEDLINE and what was happening in 1971 with events today:

MEDLINE Time Capsule
1971 2006
(Fiscal Year 2005 Statistics:
October 2004-September 2005)
  • 236 indexed journals; grew to 1,222 journals by September 1972
  • 147,000 total citations for MEDLARS since January 1, 1969; grew to 490,000 by September 1972
  • 22 users
  • 70,000 searches/year by June 1972
  • Operated on an IBM 360/50 mainframe computer
  • Available via dial-up telecommunications
  • 4,928 indexed journals
  • 606,000 citations indexed; 13,476,222 total citations
  • 77 million PubMed® unique visits
  • 754 million PubMed searches
  • PubMed/MEDLINE runs on 20 Dell PowerEdge 1850 servers, 2 CPU 8Gb RAM, with the Linux operating system in 64 bit mode
  • Available via the Internet World Wide Web

Current Events Time Capsule
1971 2006
  • NASA Mariner 1 arrived at Mars - the first spacecraft to orbit the Red Planet.
  • Chemistry Nobel Prize awarded to Gerhard Herzberg, Canada for "for his contributions to the knowledge of electronic structure and geometry of molecules, particularly free radicals."
  • Physiology or Medicine Nobel Prize awarded to Earl W. Sutherland, Jr. of the United States "for his discoveries concerning the mechanisms of the action of hormones."
  • In November Intel publicly introduced the world's first single chip microprocessor.
  • The 26th Amendment lowered the United States voting age from 21 to 18.
  • Walt Disney World opened October 1 in Orlando, Florida.
  • "All in the Family" debuts in 1971 on CBS.
  • National Book Award for fiction presented to Saul Bellow for Mr. Sammler's Planet.
  • The French Connection won the Best Picture Academy Award.
  • #1 song according to Billboard Magazine: Joy to the World (Three Dog Night).
  • March 10 - NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter enters Mars orbit.
  • Leading astronomers declared that Pluto is no longer a planet under historic new guidelines that downsize the solar system from nine planets to eight.
  • A U.S. advisory panel recommended that 11- and 12-year-old girls be routinely vaccinated against the human papillomavirus virus that causes cervical cancer.
  • A drug-resistant bacterium, Staphylococcus aureus, became the most common identifiable cause of skin infections treated in emergency rooms, accounting for 59 percent of such ER cases in 11 major U.S. cities.
  • April - More than 1,000 cases of the mumps reported in Iowa and seven surrounding states in the largest outbreak of the disease in the U.S. in more than 20 years.
  • July: Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest opens - as of September 2006 the film made over $414 million dollars in the U.S.
  • As of September, the current number one song is "SexyBack" (Justin Timberlake).

MEDLINE® Turns 35. NLM Tech Bull. 2006 Sep-Oct;(352):e4.

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