Thursday, March 25, 2010

Categories list - 20 years old!

I notice that the Categories List, started and maintained by Bob Rosebrugh, is now 20 years old. The advertisement (see below) for the list was first sent out on 11th March 1990. My email address then was munnari!!

We category theorists owe a great deal to Bob Rosebrugh for this initiative, and for his other creation the on-line journal Theory and Applications of Categories.
Among other things he has dealt very calmly and competently with the little crises which tend to occur on such lists.

Thank you, Bob.

(I think I played a small (very small) part in the creation. Some years prior I spoke at every categories conference about the importance of email and the internet. I will have to look up the date, I think it was around 1983/1985.)

March 11,1990

Dear Colleague:

This letter is to announce the availability of a Bulletin Board for Category
Theory on BITNET. The address is CATEGORIES@MTA.BITNET.

The intention is to operate in a manner similar to the Types Bulletin Board.
To join the mailing list, simply send a message to:


After confirmation of two-way transmission your name will be added to the list.
Please provide a very complete return address. To distinguish messages for
forwarding from others of an administrative nature, please mail to Categories
ONLY messages which are intended to be forwarded. All other messages should be
sent to categories-request@mta.bitnet, or to me ( rrosebrugh@mta.bitnet )

Anyone may submit (electronically only) any material about Category Theory (and
only about Category Theory) for distribution - abstracts, announcements of
results or meetings, queries, or full papers. Material will be forwarded as
received unless there is evidence that the message received is garbled. The
initial committment is that turn-around times will not exceed a couple of days.

TeX files are welcome in any flavour - plain, AmSTeX or LaTeX. They should
include a Character Code Reference which is available on request.
Unfortunately, until we see how well this works, there can be no committment to
either authors or subscribers regarding accuracy of TeX files transmitted. TeX
preprints will be archived separately, and a catalogue of them will be
published irregularly. Macro packages are the responsibility of the author,
however an attempt will be made to archive versions of diagram macro packages.

I gratefully acknowledge assistance from David Jones at Types who suggested
some of the procedures to be used. Electronic addresses to which this is being
sent are taken from lists provided by Mike Barr and Max Kelly, and I thank
them (and Mike Johnson who transmitted Max's list.)

Those seem to be the main points. Looking forward to a useful exchange,


Bob Rosebrugh
/TO categories@mta.bitnet
/BC Mike Barr ,
Francis Borceux ,
Aurelio Carboni ,
Peter Freyd ,
Mike Johnson ,
Paul Johnson ,
Stefano Kasangian ,
Fred Linton ,
Phil Mulry ,
Susan Niefield ,
Bob Pare ,
Andy Pitts ,
Pino Rosolini ,
Dietmar Schumacher ,
Phil Scott ,
Robert Seely ,
Ross Street ,
Paul Taylor ,
Bob Walters ,
Charles Wells ,
Richard Wood

The following message has been sent out to about 100 addresses from
Mike's and Max's address lists. On the assumption that anyone I have heard
from wishes to be included on the subscriber list, I have included you already.
Let's see how it goes.




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