The Oxford English dictionary defines a document as ‘something written … which furnishes evidence or information upon any subject’, and documentation as the ‘preparation or use of documentary evidence and authorities’. In other words, anything in which knowledge is recorded is a document, and documentation is any process which serves to make a document available to the seeker after knowledge. This process will be the chief concern of the Journal of documentation. Librarianship and the organization of information services, bibliography and cataloguing, abstracting and indexing, classification and filing, photographic and mechanical methods of reproduction: all these things and many others are the channels of documentation which guide knowledge to the inquirer. All, as opportunity serves, will receive attention in these pages. Nor will this attention be limited by national boundaries or by the artificial segregation of the sciences and humanities. Of all these things the present first number offers some testimony. Yet the times are not propitious for universal undertakings: only a quiet beginning is now attempted, to be amplified later if approved.
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