Look behind you! The past can contribute uniquely to the future
Dominion Astrophysical Observatory, 5071 West Saanich Road, Victoria, BC, V9E 2E7, Canada
Published online: 8 September 2017
The surveys which are the chief foci of this meeting are almost exclusively concerned with recent and upcoming electronic surveys. But the practice of surveying the night sky is not new; some of the first coordinated observatory activities involved surveys, of various hues and sizes, and for many decades the IAU paid tribute to that activity by supporting a special Commission for it. The wealth of past surveys is described briefly. Though now regarded as limited in quality, early surveys carry date-stamps which enable their contents to add usefully, sometimes critically, to modern science.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2017
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