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Zhaoran Xu zxu at SERFIS.BY.UA.EDU
Thu Nov 2 09:12:20 CST 1995

Announcement from SERFIS
November 2, 1995

        A revised schedule for the ***International Workshop of Bilingual
        (English-Chinese) Botanical Information Management*** is attached
        below.  Those who received our registration packageas and are
        interested in the workshop need to respond as soon as possible.
        We will prepare and send to the travel agent a final list of
        participants early next week.

        In the last several months, colleagues asked me some questions
        concerning the workshop.  Since I was in China from Mid-July to
        Late-September for our NSF project, I was unable to promptly
        respond to those questions sent to my email box.  Following is a
        summary of the objectives, the NSF guidelines and application
        procedures for the workshop.  More information will be posted in
        our WWW server:

        Objectives:  1) To promote scholarly communication with Chinese
        botanists and to populate the idea and practice of bilingual
        (English-Chinese) information management.  2) To provide an
        opportunity for participants to experience and to evaluate
        existing botanical database systems, including PANDORA (by R.
        Pankhurst), SERFIS (by R. Haynes & Z. Xu), SMASCH (by T. Duncan)
        and TROPICOS (by C. McMahon).  And 3), for participants to get
        hands-on experience with Internet facilities and resources.

        NSF Guidelines:  1) The workshop is limited to 30 participants.
        2) Any one institution is not allowed to have more than two
         scientifically senior  participants.  3) Women and graduate
        students or  scientifically junior  participants are encouraged.
        And 4), there have to be enough Chinese participants to justify
        the workshop objectives.

        Application Procedures:  We accept application from anyone, but we
        have to select participants because of limited funding and
        laboratory seats.  Those who responded to our  Anticipated
        Participation Form  will have a seat, and the others will be
        selected according to NSF guidelines.  We now have a list of over
        50 people, but no one should be discouraged by this number because
        some anticipated participants may not come and because we can
        request from NSF for another workshop if our waiting list
        justifies that.

                                        --- Zhaoran Xu
                                            zxu at

Preliminary Schedule

               An International Workshop on

About 30 participants will attend the workshop, among whom about 1/3 are
curators (C) and 1/3 are museum database specialists (MDS).  Seven
computer experts (CE) will present special topics and several Chinese
colleagues will discuss information management related to the Chinese

Following is a list of major topics.  In addition, each participant will
have at least 15 minutes to present what he intends to bring to the

December 3, demos and hands-on practice with:
        A survey of database management systems in mainland China: LI Lei
                (CE, China)
        Botanical databases in mainland China: XU Kexue (CE, China)
        GIS application to natural resource management:  XU Jianchu (C,
        Herbarium Databases in Taiwan: PENG Ching-I (C, China)
        HICLAS, a classification system: ZHONG Yang (MDS, China)
        Image processing with Wavelet: Zhijian Wu (MathProf., U.S.)
        PANDORA, a Botanical Database System: Richard Pankhurst (MDS,
        SERFIS, Southeastern Regional Floristic Information System: Robert
                Haynes and Zhaoran Xu (MDS, U.S.)
        SMASCH, Specimen Management System for California Herbaria: Thomas
                Duncan (MDS, U.S.)
        TROPICOS and Flora of China: Christine McMahon (MDS), Ihsan Al-
                Shehbaz, Robert McGill and Jim Zarucchi (C)(U.S.)
        Other presentations.

December 4, visit and see demos in:
        American Computer Consultants (Birmingham, AL), Client-Server
                Networking with Windows NT as server and Windows 95
                as clients: Steve Gleason (CE, U.S.)
        NASA computing facilities (Huntsville, AL)
        SUN Microsystems (Huntsville, AL), Image processing and related
                SUN facilities:  Ron Bush and Robert Montgomery (CE, U.S.)

December 5
   Morning, demos and hands-on practice:
        A survey of Chinese operating systems and word-processors: Hongbo
                Ni (CE, Australia) and Zhaoran Xu
        Bilingual (English-Chinese) information management for geographic,
                personal and taxonomic reference data: Zhaoran Xu
        Prototype of bilingual (English-Chinese) herbarium database
                systems (BBIS95): GUAN Duofei, LI Mingguang (CE, China)
                and Zhaoran Xu
        Sending and displaying Chinese data on the Internet, especially
                with World Wide Web:  Jie Wang (CE, U.S.)
        Other presentations.
        Other presentations
        Discussion and evaluation
        Conclusion of workshop.

In addition, four laboratory sessions are scheduled for workshop
participants to explore the Internet or to practice a specific system
demonstrated in the workshop.  The computer lab has 28 personal
computers that can access the Internet.  During the workshop,
participants will be offered a user-account in both the LAN and SUN
servers.  Following is the Lab Schedule:
        December 2 (Saturday): 1-5 pm
        December 3 (Monday): 1-5 pm and 7-10 pm
        December 5 (Wednesday): 1-5 pm

We will compile and distribute a workshop reference to include core
information of major topics presented in the workshop.  This reference
can be used as a user s guide for relevant systems in or after the

During the workshop, there will several social events, including a mixer
in the evening of December 2, an opening session in the morning of
December 3 and a banquet in the evening of December 5.

Registration Information

                An International Workshop on

An International Workshop on Bilingual (English-Chinese) Botanical
Information Management will be held in 2-6 December 1995 at the
University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Alabama, U.S.A.  The workshop is
funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF), including lodging,
food, domestic travel and some other cost.  Co-funding is provided by
the Chinese National Natural Science Foundation (NSFC) for international
travel from mainland China to Birmingham (AL).

Major Topic Speakers:  May arrive at the University of Alabama on
December 1 or 2, as far as you can arrive in time to attend the Major
Topic Speakers meeting to be held in 3-5 pm on December 2 (Saturday).
You need to submit  a document that contains core information about what
you plan to demonstrate in the workshop.  The document should be limited
to 10 pages of single spaced with courier font 10 point size, including
an overview of the system, the structure and major functions, hardware
and software requirement, and a user guide to install and to use the
system.  Please send us both a hard copy and a 3.5  floppy disk with
your electronic file before November 15.  The document will be compiled
into a reference to be distributed in the workshop.

Other Participants:   Need to arrive on December 2 (Saturday) before
6:00 pm.  Please prepare a summary of what you plan to present in the
workshop.  Your summary should be limited to 2 pages of single-spaced
with courier font 10 point size.  We will collect your summary (both a
hard copy and an electronic file) during the workshop, and the summary
may be compiled into a future workshop publication.

The workshop will provide lodging and food for international
participants from 12:00 pm of December 1 to 12:00 pm of December 7, and
for domestic participants from 12:00 pm of December 2 to 12:00 pm of
December 6.  This intends to give international participants some more
time to prepare themselves before the workshop, which is possible
because our International Programs will cover partial cost of the
workshop.  We can also furnish lodging and food for Major Topic Speakers
on December 1 if he/she choose to come on that day.

Participation is by invitation, but application is open to anybody.
Request for further information may be directed to
        Dr. Robert Haynes, 205-348-1826, Email: rhaynes at
        Dr. Zhaoran Xu, 205-348-1790, Email: zxu at

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