D-Lib Magazine
June 2000

Volume 6 Number 6

ISSN 1082-9873

In Brief

Report on the IEEE Advances in Digital Libraries 2000 Conference

Contributed by:
Pamela Memmott
Corporation for National Research Initiatives
Reston, Virginia, USA

The Institute for Electronic and Electrical Engineers (IEEE) Advances in Digital Libraries (ADL) 2000 Conference convened on May 22 - 24, 2000, in Washington, DC. The conference was sponsored by the IEEE Computer Society Technical Committee on Digital Libraries and The National Library of Medicine. Below is a description of panel discussions and keynote addresses. For those who may be interested in descriptions of the additional sessions attended, please click here.

Craig Silverstein, Director of Technology at Google, Inc., presented the opening keynote address on the "Future History of Information Retrieval." Mr. Silverstein discussed how information retrieval has been moving from searching toward "finding". He defined "finding" as "retrieving or constructing" a single result to fulfill an information need. In addition, Mr. Silverstein focused on how the transformation from searching to "finding" will effect how search services are provided and utilized.

The second day of the conference opened with panel on globally distributed libraries. The panel discussed the DECOMATE II (DElivery of COpyright MATerial to End-Users) initiative. DECOMATE II allows the user to select multiple databases to search at one time, the result of which is a list of the databases and the number of hits in each. From this list, the user can then link to a full list of hits from the individual databases. DECOMATE II also provides an "optimizer tool" that will locate duplicates in the database and a relevance-ranking feature. The second topic the panel discussed was the use of DECOMATE II at the London School of Economics where they have implemented an application named AuthBroker. AuthBroker authorizes users and then responds with information about them, including group memberships and their associated permissions. The application operates using existing external authentication and directory services. Lastly, the panel addressed the Current Awareness Service application which, through the use of a concept browser that ultimately connects to the DECOMATE system, allows for searches on topics where the user may not know exactly what they want or how it is indexed. For example, a student seeking information on marketing but not certain of the different types of marketing, could perform a search simply on "marketing". The search would return results including the many different disciplines (brand marketing, consumer marketing, business-to-business marketing, etc., that were previously indexed) from which the student could then narrow their search. The system ensures that the terms used for a search have been indexed before the connection to DECOMATE.

Closing the second day of the conference was an additional panel that discussed issues for "Digital Libraries in Science Education". Topics covered included:

  • models for achieving the goal of providing a resource that meets the needs of its users, while allowing for long-term sustainability and availability;
  • a means for collecting and storing the multitude of earth science data that is now being collected due to the increased technology of satellites, etc.;
  • DLESE which includes collections of high-quality, peer-reviewed instructional materials providing for both automated and human-interactive services;
  • WWW-based cataloguing for the NEEDS program;
  • the Math Forum's Internet Math Library and the creation of a virtual reference desk to better assist its users; and
  • NSF's vision for LEARNS.

IEEE ADL 2000 closed with a keynote talk by Tom Baker from the German National Research Center for Information Technology (GMD). Dr. Baker described metadata as a language that includes schemas as small vocabularies for making statements about resources that evolve with use, and one in which semantic coherence can be a problem when schemas change. He discussed how registries can function as dictionaries and help metadata vocabularies evolve similar to other human languages. Dr. Baker also addressed the use of RDF schemas to strike a balance between prescription and description in the roles of editors and usage boards. DublinCore was described as a "thick" registry enabling the storage of schemas and other information in a centralized database or repository and used for multiple languages. In addition, Dr. Baker indicated that DCMI could be used for peer review and official recognition of local extensions.

The Proceedings of the IEEE Advances in Digital Libraries 2000 may be ordered in print format from the following sources:

IEEE Computer Society, < http://computer.org >
IEEE Service Center, < http://shop.ieee.org/store/>
IEEE Computer Society, Asia/Pacific Office,
< tokyo.ofc@computer.org >.

(Editor's note: Dr. Baker's story, "Languages for Dublin Core" appeared in the December 1998 issue of D-Lib Magazine.)


Open Archives initiative

Contributed by:
Edward A. Fox
Professor, Department of Computer Science
Virginia Tech
Blacksburg, Virginia, USA

The Open Archives initiative (OAi) <http://www.openarchives.org> was launched in October 1999 to provide a forum to discuss and solve problems of interoperability among author self-archiving solutions.

The second meeting connected with the Open Archives initiative was a one-day workshop <http://purl.org/net/oaijune00/> supported and hosted by both ACM Hypertext '2000 <http://www.ht00.org> and ACM Digital Libraries '2000 <http://www.dl00.org>, on June 3 in San Antonio, Texas, USA. The purpose of this workshop was to ratify, solidify, and expand on previous agreements.

The third OAi meeting <http://purl.org/net/oaisept00>, which still has openings for interested attendees, will be held in Lisbon, Portugal, on September 21, 2000, in conjunction with the September 18-20 activities of ECDL'2000 <http://www.bn.pt/org/agenda/ecdl2000/>. These OAi workshops follow on from the October 20-21, 1999, meeting in Santa Fe, New Mexico, which discussed what was then called the Universal Preprint Service and the Santa Fe Convention (see two February 2000 D-Lib Magazine articles at <http://www.dlib.org/dlib/february00/02contents.html>).

OAi aims to support archives, both those focused on e-prints (e.g., preprints and reprints, often connected with journals and conferences) and those representing a wide variety of other content types (e.g., theses and dissertations, Web log files, and educational resources). The emphasis has been on allowing harvesting of metadata that describes diverse "records" of content, stored in managed repositories. By June, there were 6 conforming archives with content available for harvesting.

At the Second OAi meeting, 43 people assembled from 5 countries. Eleven of those had attended the Santa Fe meeting, and many others were closely affiliated with an organization or group that participated in the Santa Fe meeting. Among those were the workshop organizing committee: Edward Fox, Carl Lagoze, Clifford Lynch, and Hussein Suleman -- each of whom gave brief presentations.

After the results of the Santa Fe meeting were discussed, follow on work was described. In the rest of the morning session, a thorough review led by representatives (Michael Nelson, Hussein Suleman, Robert Tansley, and Simeon Warner) of 4 implementation teams (Old Dominion University, Virginia Tech, Southampton University, and Los Alamos National Laboratory), along with comments solicited from all attendees, resulted in a list of concerns and issues. Workshop attendees agreed to work on these issues and create official and definitive documents that address all key concerns by the end of the calendar year. Coordination will be provided by an emerging OAi steering committee (with agreed participation of Dale Flecker, Edward Fox, Carl Lagoze, Clifford Lynch, and Herbert Van de Sompel -- and additional participation expected), with a focus on creating and managing appropriate mechanisms, both organizational and technical, to support the work of the initiative.

Version 2 of the OAi specifications and a number of conforming implementations, including in PERL and Java, will be available so that archives can participate easily in OAi. Both data and service providers should be able to confidently build on a firm foundation as they expand the set of functions available to deal with a growing distributed base of open metadata and content.

Afternoon sessions briefly considered follow-on work to support dissemination of initiative results, recruitment of new archives to join the OAi, development of additional services, research on the many technical/user/social/economic/legal problems that relate, and management/community development activities.

For more information and additional references see the Web site at <http://www.openarchives.org>, which points to the online workshop proceedings.


First ACM/IEEE CS Joint Conference on Digital Libraries Announced

Contributed by:
Edward A. Fox
Professor, Department of Computer Science
Virginia Tech
Blacksburg, Virginia, USA

At the ACM Digital Libraries Conference DL'2000 in San Antonio, Texas this month, a preliminary announcement was made regarding the 1st ACM/IEEE CS Joint Conference on Digital Libraries, JCDL 2001. "The objective of the JCDL is to promote research and development in the area of digital libraries, continuing in the successful traditions of the Association for Computing Machinery's Digital Libraries Conference and the Institute for Electrical and Electronics Engineers Computer Society's conference on Advances in Digital Libraries. The conference is designed to meet the needs of a large and diverse constituency, comprising practitioners, researchers, educators, policy makers, and users."

The conference is planned for Summer 2001 in Roanoke, Virginia, USA, and a Call for Papers (CfP) will be issued in the near future. The JCDL web site is not yet operational, but is expected to be available soon. Watch for information at <http://www.jcdl.org>. A notice about the Call for Papers will be published in the "Clips and Pointers" column of D-Lib Magazine when the organizers of JCDL 2001 have issued the final version of the CfP.


Göttingen Gutenberg Bible Goes Digital

Contributed by:
Norbert Lossau
Head of the Center for Digitization (GDZ)
Subject librarian for Finno-ugrian Studies
State- und University Library Göettingen
Göttingen, Germany

Göttingen State and University Library holds one of the few complete vellum copies of the Gutenberg Bible, which was printed around 1454. An exhibition in the historical building of Göttingen Library (June 24 - October 29) pays tribute to Gutenberg, the inventor of printing. As part of the exhibition, the Library will present the Library's original vellum copy of the Gutenberg Bible, the digitized version of the Gutenberg Bible, and numerous items from the Library's rich collection of early prints of the 15th and 16th centuries. The exhibition spans a bridge of time from the printed Gutenberg Bible to that of the digital world. Interactive multi-media PCs will allow the comparison of the digitised copy with the original vellum copy.

The digitisation of the Göttingen Gutenberg Bible was an ambitious project for the Library and an excellent model of co-operation between "traditional" Know How of the Department on Rare Books and Manuscripts (Helmut Rohlfing), the Subject Librarian for Religion (Armin Müller-Dreier) and the Digitization Centre of the Library. The project started in Summer 1999. Based on the experience of the Göttingen Digitisation Centre (GDZ) <http://www.sub.uni-goettingen.de/gdz/> the 1282 pages of the Göttingen vellum copy were scanned with a high-end professional digital camera back, Picture Gate 8000 (up to 8000x9700 pixels resolution). Careful attention was paid to create faithful reproductions of the 88 wonderful illuminated, partly gilded pages. A special working place, equipped with a moveable cradle and adjustable vacuum to hold pages contact-free flat, was designed by the engineer and restorer M. Mayer of the Graz University Library. So-called "cool light" area lights (5000 Kelvin, flicker-free) were used to address preservation issues <http://www.gutenbergdigital.de/technik.html>.

At the end of May, the CD-ROM "Gutenberg digital" was officially launched by the Göttingen State and University Library and the K G Saur Publisher. The CD-ROM (2 Discs) is now available for purchase at a cost of DM 98 (ca. 50 USD + 12 USD shipping).

In addition to the complete Gutenberg Bible, the digital version includes: the manuscript of the Göttingen Model Book, a contemporary manuscript which provided the patterns for the decoration of the Göttingen Bible; and the famous Helmasperger's Notarial Instrument (6th November 1455), dealing with Gutenberg's invention, known as the "Werk der Bücher" (work of books) and Gutenberg's business relations with Johannes Fust.

The CD-ROM is bilingual (German and English). The presentation is programmed in HTML and can be viewed with standard (4th generation) Web Browsers. All illuminated pages are prepared in Flash programming language, since the required Flash-Plugin for viewing the pages is implemented in later versions of Web Browsers. You can find a Table of Contents for the two Discs at <http://www.gutenbergdigital.de/vorversion/inhaltcd_en.htm>.

Disk 1 of the set contains the complete Bible as facsimile, navigated by the Books of the Bible. Thumbnail-Views allow for a first orientation within a selected Book, and detailed views are offered in double and single page modes. Added value for text access is given by a selection of well-known Bible verses in different languages (images from the Gutenberg Bible compared to the original Hebrew and Greek text as well as to German, English and French translations). These Passages from the Bible can be found on Disk 2 of the CD-ROM set <http://www.gutenbergdigital.de/vorversion/bisteuee.htm>.

Disk 2 starts with an illustrated text about Johann Gutenberg, his Life, his Epoch-Making Achievements, etc. The text is based on a work of Prof. Dr. Stephan Füssel (Institute for Book Sciences, University of Mainz). The Helmasperger's Notarial Instrument can be viewed as facsimile or in contemporary transcription, each of which are explained by, and enriched with, translations in German or modern English. Some important passages include scholarly commentaries.

The included Göttingen Model Book, with its very precise instructions for the mixing and heightening of colours, provides an outstanding resource for research on medieval book illustration techniques. Disk 2 offers a rich variety of comparisons between the patterns of the Model Book and the colouring of foliage, initials and patterned grounds in various colour combinations of the Göttingen Gutenberg Bible. Researchers and others will find hyperlinks to descriptions of the techniques used to create high quality digital reproductions.

In addition to the CD-ROM which may be purchased, on June 23, the Göttingen State and University Library will make "Gutenberg digital" freely available via the Internet <http://www.gutenbergdigital.de>. A pre-version is accessible now at <http://www.gutenbergdigital.de/vorversion/index.htm>.

For additional information, please contact:

Dr. Norbert Lossau <lossau@mail.sub.uni-goettingen.de>
Martin Liebetruth <liebetru@mail.sub.uni-goettingen.de>

Niedersächsische Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek
Platz der Göttinger Sieben 1
37073 Göttingen, Germany
Phone: +49 +551 +39-5217 or -5386
Fax: +49 +551 +39-5222


Cooperation between the British Library and UK Universities

Contributed by:
Alicia Wise
JISC Collections Manager
Old Library, Kings College London
London, United Kingdom

The British Library and the UK Higher Education sector have a mutual interest in closer strategic collaboration. A task force, supported by the British Library Chairman, John Ashworth, and the Chief Executive of the Higher Education Funding Council for England, Sir Brian Fender, has now been established to drive forward this close strategic collaboration.

Building on a history of collaborative discussion between the Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC) and the British Library, the Task Force aims for specific initiatives for mutual benefit, in line with the British Library's increasing strategic emphasis on collaboration to deliver its objectives.

Membership includes for the British Library: Brian Lang, Lynne Brindley, David Bradbury, Geoff Smith and Malcolm Smith, and for Higher Education Mary Auckland, Reg Carr, Lorcan Dempsey, Paul Hubbard, Mike Hopkins, Nigel Macartney, Ronald Milne, Ian Mowat, Charles Oppenheim, Malcolm Read and Alicia Wise.

The Task Force believes that strategic collaboration will bring benefit to both parties, and will allow the national higher educational needs for research, learning and outreach to be met in the most coherent and cost-effective manner possible.

Three areas will be explored to initiate a practical agenda:

  1. An analysis of potential mechanisms for coordinating the development of a distributed national collection of library research resources, including the need for, and feasibility of, the creation of a national body for this purpose.
  2. A study of the relationship between the British Library's and Higher Education libraries' objectives, leading to the development of high level performance measures of the British Library's contribution to the HE sector.
  3. An examination of the way in which the British Library and Higher Education inter-lending and document supply services currently inter-relate, and how the system of mutual support can be improved.


A National Union Catalogue for the UK?

Contributed by:
Peter Stubley
Assistant Director of Library Services
University of Sheffield
Sheffield, England

A Feasibility Study into a National Union Catalogue for the UK is being undertaken by a consortium led by the University of Sheffield Library and including CURL (the Consortium of University Research Libraries), the University of Glasgow Library and Crossnet Systems.

Fifteen years after the demise of the projected UKLDS (United Kingdom Library Database System), renewed interest is being shown in the idea of a National Union Catalogue. This has been spurred on by initiatives in the UK such as the Electronic Library Programme's virtual catalogue 'Clumps' projects, together with the success of large-scale physical models such as COPAC (the CURL OPAC), and the British Library's OPAC97. But on an international level there have been similar developments such as the National Library of Canada's Virtual Canadian Union Catalogue (vCuc), the Committee on Institutional Cooperation's Virtual Electronic Library (the CIC VEL), Kinetica in Australia and a variety of European projects.

Most importantly, what started out as librarian-oriented tools for inter-lending have now become recognised as having major resource discovery potential for end users: a National Union Catalogue might be expected to list the holdings of all major libraries in the country and answer questions such as, "Where is the nearest copy of a particular book?", "How many copies of a research monograph are there in the UK and where are they situated?", "What are the key collections in my subject area and in which libraries are they located?" and "In which libraries of the region are the scattered runs of a particular journal title located?". Additional, co-operative services -- inter-lending, document delivery, reciprocal borrowing -- might also arise from the pooling of resources associated with the creation of such a "joined-up" catalogue.

The aim of the Feasibility Study is to undertake a review of key issues that impinge on the creation of a National Union Catalogue for monographs, serials and other formats (such as archives and manuscripts) for the UK. The primary focus will be UKHE and national library catalogues and collections, though the public library sector will also be consulted. A major component of the Study will be an investigation into the possibilities of a union serials catalogue for the UK. International developments will be followed closely, and visits are expected to discuss pros, cons, successes and failures. The Study is being funded jointly by the Joint Information Systems Committee of the Higher Education Funding Councils (JISC), the Research Support Libraries Programme (RSLP) and the British Library. The contract was granted in May 2000, and the final report and recommendations will be submitted at the end of 2000.

Plans are underway for wide consultation with the national library community and potential end users, particularly staff and researchers in UK universities. However, wherever you are, if you would like to feed comments into the process, or for further information, please contact: Peter Stubley, St George's Library, University of Sheffield, Mappin Street, Sheffield S1 4DT; telephone: +44 (0) 114 222 7327; fax: +44 (0) 114 279 6406; e-mail: <p.stubley@sheffield.ac.uk>. More information, including a list of Frequently Asked Questions, can be found on the web site for the Feasibility Study at <http://www.uknuc.shef.ac.uk/>.


OED Online for FE and HE Institutions

Contributed by:
Susanna Lob
Marketing Manager, Oxford English Dictionary Online
Oxford University Press
Oxford, United Kingdom

Low cost Access to the New Oxford English Dictionary Online for Further and Higher Education Institutions in the UK and Ireland (Press Release)

The crown jewel of reference works -- the Oxford English Dictionary Online -- will be available at a significantly reduced cost to all further and higher education institutions in the UK and Ireland.

From 1 June 2000, students and staff at subscribing institutions will benefit from unlimited access to "the Internet’s biggest, most prestigious reference work" (The Guardian).

This opportunity comes as a result of a special 3-year pricing arrangement negotiated by the Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC) of the further and high education funding councils and Oxford University Press (OUP).

Special funding from the Further Education Funding bodies via the JISC, together with special pricing from OUP, means that a network licence to OED Online will cost further education colleges just £85 including VAT in the first year of the 3-year deal (compared with astandard list price of £600 plus VAT).

This is the first time that further education colleges have been able to take advantage of a JISC-negotiated deal. This is all part of the strategy to enable students and staff in colleges to participate fully in the government’s lifelong learning agenda by enabling access to high quality learning resources via the Internet.

The Oxford English Dictionary Online will join other high quality resources delivered via the Internet through the Distributed National Electronic Resource (DNER).

CHEST will manage this agreement on behalf of the JISC. Please see <http://www.chest.ac.uk/datasets/oed/> for full details.

In addition, significant cost-savings -- via the Regional Network Alliance -- are available to North American Institutions, please refer to: <http://www.oup-usa.org/epub/oed/index.html>.

For more information please contact:

Dr. Alicia Wise
JISC Collections Manager
Old Library
King’s College London
London WC2R 2LS
(020) 7848 2556
(020) 7848 2937

Susanna Lob
Marketing Manager
Oxford English Dictionary Online
Online Oxford University Press
Great Clarendon St.
Oxford OX2 6DP
01865 267229


New Open Access Resources from Bartleby.com

Contributed by:
Megan Schade
Managing Editor
New York, New York, USA.

Oxford Shakespeare on the Web

In May 2000, Bartleby.com (http://www.bartleby.com made available the 1350-page Oxford Shakespeare for unlimited reading and searching free of charge for the student, scholar and pleasure reader alike.

With ample Shakespeare quotations, anthologized verse, literary history and criticism and related works, the Shakespeare collection at Bartleby.com becomes one of the great modern editions of the Shakespeare's "Complete Works," and currently, it takes its place as the most authoritative Shakespeare freely available on the Internet.

The following comprise the Bartleby.com Shakespeare collection:

  • The Complete Works of William Shakespeare
    The 37 plays, 154 sonnets and miscellaneous verse of the Oxford edition are divided into over 1,000 web files that allow for quick access for reading and printing, accurate searches that highlight any key word or words, as well as bibliographic citation that makes use of a unique web- adapted line-numbering system.
  • Bartlett's Shakespeare Quotations
    Over 1500 quotations from all of Shakespeare's plays and many poems form the nucleus of John Bartlett's famous collection.
  • Anthologized Verse
    The editors of the "Oxford Book of English Verse" and the "Golden Treasury" present 74 verse selections from Shakespeare's poems and plays.
  • Life, Plays, Poems and Bibliography
    The great teacher and scholar George Saintsbury created the touchstone for Shakespeare reference with these chapters from the "Cambridge History of English Literature."
  • "Hamlet and His Problems"
    T.S. Eliot's famous essay on Shakespeare's greatest tragic character.
  • Tales from Shakespeare
    Brother-and-sister writing team Charles and Mary Lamb interweave the words of Shakespeare with their own to bring 20 of his best plays to the young reader.

The Complete Text of H. L. Mencken’s The American Language

In April 2000 Bartleby.com (http://www.bartleby.com), the announced the expansion of its Language, Style & Composition collection with the exclusive web publication of H. L. Mencken’s The American Language, Second Edition; Edward Sapir’s Language: An Introduction to the Study of Speech; and Arthur Quiller-Couch’s On the Art of Reading and Writing. Together with the encyclopedic contemporary reference work The American Heritage® Book of English Usage-as well as other classic texts like Strunk’s The Elements of Style and H. W. Fowler’s The King’s English-Bartleby.com offers the largest library of usage available on the web: accessible 24 hours per day, at no charge.

The following books, which comprise some 2000 full-text searchable pages, make up the Bartleby.com Language, Style & Composition collection:

Henry Gray's "Anatomy of the Human Body"

The 20th edition of Gray's Anatomy, thoroughly revised and reedited by Warren H. Lewis, was hailed an instant classic when originally published in 1918. Bartleby.com breaths new life into this work by publishing it in a format designed exclusively for the web. This 1,396-page ebook is divided into nearly 300 sections, with 1,247 illustrations (many in color and unchanged since the first edition of 1859) rendered in three different resolutions, and with an encyclopedic subject index comprising some 13,000 entries hypertext-linked directly to their respective pages in the text.

About Bartleby.com: Headquartered in New York City, Bartleby.com began publishing on the web in 1994. Now a leading innovator in the field of electronic publishing, Bartleby.com has been widely cited as one of the best reference sites on the web.

Named after the character of Melville's classic "Bartleby, the Scrivener," Bartleby.com provides millions of students, educators and the intellectually curious with unparalleled access to classics and reference books online.

For information contact:

Tish Wagner, Bairey & Bedford Public Relations
Email: <Tish@b2pr.com>
Phone: 770-725-0585

Megan Schade, Bartleby.com
Email: <press@bartleby.com>
Phone: 212-375-6288

John Kibler, Bartleby.com
Email: <webmaster@bartleby.com>
Phone: 212-375-6288


Naval Research Laboratory Press Release

Contributed by:
Public Affairs Branch
Naval Research Laboratory
Washington, D.C., USA

Naval Research Laboratory and American Institute of Physics Complete Project to Expand World Wide Web Journal Access

The Naval Research Laboratory and American Institute of Physics have completed a project to expand World Wide Web journal access. A press release about the project is now available online in HTML format. The full press release is located at <http://www.pao.nrl.navy.mil/rel-00/23-00r.html>. Following is an excerpt from the press release:

"The Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) and the American Institute of Physics (AIP) have recently completed a project to provide Web-based access to an important body of scientific literature. During the past two years, the two organizations have worked cooperatively to improve the availability of AIP-published journals in a digital format."

"During the project, NRL's Ruth H. Hooker Research Library assisted the AIP in creating a digital archive of eight core journals. NRL digitized these journals by scanning their contents into high quality PDF files so that they can be made available from the AIP's Web-based Online Journal Publishing Service (OJPS) in a format consistent with that of more recently published journals. In addition, AIP journals have been added to the 220 journals mounted locally at NRL and searchable through the Library's TORPEDO Ultra system. The successful completion of this work extends AIP's digital journal archive back to 1991."

" 'This project,' says Ms. Laurie E. Stackpole, NRL Chief Librarian, 'demonstrates that scholarly society publishers, like the American Institute of Physics, and scientific research libraries, like NRL's, share a deep commitment to the continuing availability of important scientific publications. By working together, they can forge relationships that not only benefit the participants, but that, even more importantly, improve world-wide access to the results of research, enhancing scientific productivity and fostering creativity.' "

Please see the full press release for further information, including a listing of the eight journals which have been digitized thus far for the archive.


Copyright (c) 2000 Corporation for National Research Initiatives

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DOI: 10.1045/june2000-inbrief