Click on the thumbnail at the bottom right of this page to go to the bitmap scan of this document. The text of this document appears immediately below.
THE ROYAL ASTRONOMICAL SOCIETY OF CANADA STANDING COMMITTEE ON OBSERVATIONAL ACTIVITIES FROM NATIONAL CHAIRMAN Bulletin No. 4 In this, my first bulletin as Chairman of the Standing Committee on Observational Activities, it seems appropriate to restate the purpose of the Committee and to review the progress that has been made to date. The Committee has three main objectives:- 1. To keep members informed of the observational activities of all Centres. 2. To give help and encouragement to the Centres in developing observatiOnal progranraes. 3. To develop, ultimately, programmes of definite scientific value in which the experienced amateur can participate. With sixteen widely separated Centres from Halifax to Victoria, communication has always been a major problem. Prior to 1958 we were hardly aware of each other' s existence, for few members from outside of Toronto attended the Society's Annual Meeting and At-Home, held always in Toronto on a Friday evening in late winter. Then the suggestion was made that every alternate year the Annual Meeting be held outside of Toronto, and the Hamilton Centre was host in 1958. The following year the Annual Meeting, held again in Toronto, was expanded into a two-day event with a paper session. In Montreal in 1960 there was the first display of observational work, and discussion groups held at that time led to the formation of the Standing Committee on Observational Activities the following year. The Standing Committee is composed of the Chairman and three members and the National Co- ordinator of each of the observing disciplines. While it was decided that all observa- tions could be classified under ten main observing disciplines, it was agreed that these should be introduced one or two at a time. At present there are National Co-ordinators for six disciplines, as shown on the attached list. Admittedly, these have not all been as active as we would have wished but we have gained experience and I am confident that we are now ready for another step forward. Our efforts are now being directed towards issuing bulletins at regular intervals. It is believed that the duplicating and mailing of the bulletins, formerly the responsibility of the Co-ordinators, can be handled more efficiently by the National Office. It is there- fore planned to have mailings through the National Office three or four times a year, each mailing to include the bulletin of any Co-ordinator who has material ready at that time. With this bulletin you will also receive bulletins from the Co-ordinators of the Aurora Section and the Comet and Nova Section. Communication continues to be a problem. No matter how many bulletins we write, they are useless unless we get them into the hands of the right people. It is not practicable to send copies to all members of the Society but a wider distribution than heretofore will be possible under the new system. Several tukeyll members of each Centre will receive copies, and we ask everyone receiving a bulletin to make a special effort to bring it to the attention of any members who might be interested. Communication is a two-way street ù Were there no response from the Centres, the Co- ordinators would soon have nothing to write about. The paper sessions and exhibits that are now a part of every General Assembly indicate that there is plenty of enthusiasm all across the country. From the exhibit in Toronto last May we know that the Ottawa Centre