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Essential collection
  1. M J DAVIES, Editor

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A collaboration among the British Cardiac Society, the American College of Cardiology, the American Heart Association, and the European Society of Cardiology has culminated in the production of an innovative electronic publication. CardioCollection™ is a CD-ROM containing complete contents (full text, tables, and graphics) for three years of four major international cardiology journals:Heart, Circulation, Journal of the American College of Cardiology, and the European Heart Journal. In addition to the full contents of each journal (1995–97) this fully searchable CD-ROM also contains ACC/AHA guidelines and task force reports of the ESC, as well as themedline subset—that is, abstractsof all references cited within the journals indexed byIndex Medicus.

The societies and publishers of the four journals have been working with MultiMedia Software Inc of Maryland, USA to develop CardioCollection™ over the past two years. The aim of the CD-ROM is to provide a comprehensive library of important literature of cardiovascular diagnosis and treatment. The user friendly software allows the operator to search across all four journals using fuzzy logic searching. Alternatively the search can be restricted by journal, year, author, institution, medline abstracts, etc. A ranking of search results points the user to the most relevant articles. The software allows users to “bookmark” articles for quick retrieval; to annotate articles with personal notes; to copy and print full articles, text only, or graphics only. CardioCollection™ will be essential for anyone writing grant applications or scientific papers and reports as it can generate instant, accurate reference lists.

CardioCollection™ was demonstrated at the ESC congress in Stockholm in August 1997 and at the ACC scientific sessions in Atlanta in March 1998. Feedback from delegates was incorporated into the final product, which is now available for purchase. The publishers of the four journals will be demonstrating the 1995–97 CardioCollection™ during the 1998 ESC congress in Vienna, and delegates are encouraged to visit one of the many stands in the commercial exhibition to assess the power of this innovative collaboration. Further information is also available on the internet at, which also provides links to the participating societies and publishers.

The collection will be updated annually and each new CD will contain three years of contents of the four journals—that is, the 1999 disk will contain 1996–98 issues, the 2000 disk will contain 1997–99 issues, etc. Subscribers to CardioCollection™ will be able to buy the updates at a considerably reduced renewal rate. It is worth noting that buying CardioCollection™ is much less expensive than binding all four journals each year (remember Circulation is now published weekly)—and think of all that free office space! Members of the British Cardiac Society (as well as members of the other participating societies) will be able to purchase the initial CD and update disks at a reduced price.

The editors of the four collaborating journals have been unanimous in their enthusiastic support for this exciting venture—a superb example of international cooperation. We hope that our enthusiasm will be shared by our readers and that CardioCollection™ proves to be of great value to all cardiologists, enabling more rapid access to the important and recent international cardiovascular literature.