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The International Diffuse Reflectance Conference had its beginnings in 1982 as organized by Gerry Birth.  Gerry's original idea was to hold the conference as a Gordon Conference, but the Gordon Conference people didn't consider the content to be of sufficient scientific merit.  So Gerry organized it on the same theme as a Gordon Conference, with morning and evening sessions and free afternoons.  The original concept conceived by Dr. Gerald S. Birth continues with emphasis on diffuse reflectance spectroscopy, no matter which portion of the electromagnetic spectrum it represents. The IDRC tradition has been summarized by Karl Norris: "Most of all it is a time to meet and talk with experts in a special area of ever broadening science. A number of precedents have been a part of this meeting, and most of them are good. They include a relaxed atmosphere, low cost, morning meetings, free afternoons, evening meetings, and a social gathering at the end of the day."

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