Sea Services Forum: Letter from the Publisher

By James A. Barber, Jr., Publisher

This process has evolved for the past century-and-a quarter, from one in which all manuscripts destined for publication by the Naval Institute were routed through the members first, so all dissenting comments could be published with the original article. This is no longer possible with today's worldwide readership, but with e-mail and other electronic technology responses now can be published in the next issue after the original article appears.

If commitment to the open forum has remained strong, what about the issue themselves? The first four papers published in Volume I of Proceedings included essays on training, propulsion, and armament-critical issues then for a Navy that was lagging far behind its European counterparts, and still-critical issues today in designing and building a Navy for the 21st century. The fourth essay, "Experimental Determination of the Center of Gravity," by Naval Constructor T. D. Wilson, also has a modern counterpart, albeit one quite different in both style and substance. Our most recent essay contest winner, Marine Colonel Mark Cancian, also discussed centers of gravity—but in a strategic and operational sense, not a physical one.

In the pages that follow, you will be guided along a nostalgic pathway of issues, ideas, and images-all of which recall and reinforce our 125-year commitment to an idea that has persisted, sometimes under heavy pressure, for more than three millennia: the open forum.

Enjoy the trip.

James A. Barber, Jr., Publisher



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