1 Over the years I have published many papers in American Journals and have been honoured so to do. My only problem is not with the science but rather with the desk Editorial practice. These people have invariably imposed “American useage and spelling”. I have even had a referee comment that my English is unacceptable – from a Colonial!
This Journal will appear in Her Majesty’s Useage. Those of you unfamiliar with Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II are advised to pick up http://www.royal.gov.uk. Thus ‘sulfur’ is ‘sulphur’ or ‘fiber’ is correctly spelt ‘fibre’. We realise that some of you will find this difficult, but in the end the English Language has to be defined within the covers of the Oxford English Dictionary. I’m the first to admit it doesn’t really matter – but it’s fun!

2 To be more serious – several authors have raised the question of copyright but more seriously is our habit of publishing spectra in GRAMS. Their problem – and it is a problem – is that the data we offer is of newly recorded quality. Hence readers can manipulate the author’s data as they will. AND authors are quite rightly nervous. The problem here at IJVS is scanning. We would ideally like to scan submitted diagrams and spectra and hence produce figures that support the author’s story but do not provide the reader with a definitive data stream.

The problem we find is that scanners, designed normally to produce acceptable reproductions of photographs in colour do so by losing resolution. Spectra need sharpness to look impressive and the scanned output looks dreadful. If we use ultra high resolution the files become enormous and in a spectrum most of the page is blank!

One solution would be to offer degraded data in GRAMS but this is a bit pointless. Not everyone has GRAMS and some people have to go to some lengths to view the spectra through it. If the output they then get lacks detail why bother.

Do any of the readers have any suggestions? Remember, we must continue to use a format that is available ANYWHERE and we must keep the file lengths as short as possible.

3 Turning to this edition – we are featuring Innelastic Neutron Scattering. “What on earth is that?” I hear you shout. Read and all will be revealed. Its a very specialised technique but it is really worthwhile. Stewart Parker’s and Hervé Jobic are real experts in the field and they have sent us very readable accounts. The number of submitted articles continues to increase. We have a very mixed bag for you this time. Tom Klapötke’s group work on unbelievably unstable materials. Rumour has it Tom regularly blows up his instruments! Their paper on N2O5 is well worth reading. SERS using optical fibres – a very interesting account on technique from Jiaying Ma and Ying Sing Li – well worth your attention.

Gary Ellis can always be relied upon to help as he is a great web surfer – do look at his piece on spectroscopy links.

That’s enough from me – good reading.

Patrick Hendra