***** To join INSNA, visit http://www.insna.org ***** The historical roots of iMetrics: Referenced Publication Years Spectroscopy (RPYS) routinized and applied to Scientometrics, Journal of Informetrics, and (a subset of) JASIST Loet Leydesdorff, Lutz Bornmann, Werner Marx, and Staša Milojević We have developed a (freeware) routine for "referenced publication years spectroscopy" (RPYS) and apply this method to the historiography of "iMetrics," that is, the junction of the journals Scientometrics, Informetrics, and the relevant subset of JASIST (approx. 20%) that shapes the intellectual space for the development of information metrics (bibliometrics, scientometrics, informetrics, and webometrics). The application to information metrics (our own field of research) provides us with the opportunity to validate this methodology, and to add a reflection about using citations for the historical reconstruction. The results show that the field is rooted in individual contributions of the 1920s-1950s (e.g., Alfred J. Lotka), and was then shaped intellectually in the early 1960s by a confluence of the history of science (Derek de Solla Price), documentation (e.g., Michael M. Kessler's "bibliographic coupling"), and "citation indexing" (Eugene Garfield). Institutional development at the interfaces between science studies and information science has been reinforced by the new journal Informetrics since 2007. In a concluding reflection, we return to the question of how the historiography of science using algorithmic means--in terms of citation practices--can be different from an intellectual history of the field based, for example, on reading source materials. ** apologies for cross-postings; available at http://arxiv.org/abs/1309.5706 _____________________________________________________________________ SOCNET is a service of INSNA, the professional association for social network researchers (http://www.insna.org). To unsubscribe, send an email message to [log in to unmask] containing the line UNSUBSCRIBE SOCNET in the body of the message.