CD-ROM's useful for Herbaria.

Stephen L. Jury (Curator RNG) S.L.Jury at READING.AC.UK
Thu Jan 26 08:59:17 CST 1995

Dear colleagues,

Recently we asked the question of the availability of CD-ROM software,
that would prove useful to Herbaria.  We received the following
responses.  If you have any additions or comments to this then please
mail the list or directly to S.L.Jury at


Rupert Wilson
pp. Stephen Jury


  From: STIPOID at (Mary Barkworth)

  There is a gazetteer for the US, put out by the Geological Survey.  It
  is very reasonable in price, about $70.  I believe Canada has or is
  putting its gazetteer information on CD ROM also but, as I recall, they
  were thinking of charging several hundred dollars - outside the budget of
  UTC unfortunately.  Things may have changed.  I would bet the US Geo
  Survey will end up recovering most of their costs but not Canada.
  Mary Barkworth


 From: Robin Leech <robinl at>

 Regarding your request for gazetteers and such.  Kenelm Philip
 [FNKWP at ACAD3.ALASKA.EDU] has several for North America on a Mac-based
 system.  The Australians have several map and gazetteer systems.  To find
 out something about them, contact Dave Rentz of CSIRO in Canberra at
 [DAVER at ENTO.CSIRO.AU].  You can mention my name as a reference to
 Dave Rentz.

 Robin Leech



 What do you want the software to do?  Are you looking for sources of
 "books" on CD; or is it cataloguing type authorware you are seeking.
 If the latter contact the ETI centre in Amsterdam which has started
 producing a series of CD-roms on TAxonoic groups & Identification
 (e.g. Birds of Europe, NE. Atlantic pelagic Molluscs to name two I
 know of.  They also have the software programmes to build these up
 (Linnaeus).  If you need a contact address let me know.

> If you regularly use a piece of software, or know of any software
> that would of good use in an Herbarium then please post to this
> list, or myself directly.  We are interested to know if any map
> gazetteers, etc exist.

 I believe that the OS have gazeteers on CD - have you tried Bob
 Parry in the Geography department at Reading to ask him.
 Bartholmew's may also be a source.  USGS did something for the states.
 I'd be interested in the responses you get - then I can pass them
 onto our Library here - who currently are trying to purchase a CD-rom


 Mary Seddon
 Curator (Terrestrial Mollusca), Nat.Mus.Wales, Cardiff, UK, CF1 3NP
 E-mail: Seddonm at
 Tel. 44-222-397951x244, Fax 44-222-239009


 From: Robin Panza <panzar at>

 You might email Wayne Ferren at the Herbarium of University of California at
 Santa Barbara.  His address is PROBABLY ferren at

 He has put together a CD ROM of photographs of plant communities.  I believe it
 is intended as reference of what name goes with what description.  I've not
 actually used it but I know it exists.

 Robin Panza
 panzar at


From: Mike Dallwitz <miked at>

Dear Stephen

Your Herbarium might be interested in at least the second of these CD-ROM's.

INTKEY Packages on CD-ROM

Lawrence, J. F., Hastings, A. M., Dallwitz, M. J. and Paine, T. A. (1993).
`Beetle Larvae of the World: Interactive Identification and Information
Retrieval for Families and Sub-families.' CD-ROM, Version 1.0 for MS-DOS.
(CSIRO Publications: Melbourne.) Price: $240 (US$240 for customers outside
Australia and New Zealand) plus 5% for postage and handling.

Watson, L., and Dallwitz, M. J. (1993). `Families of Flowering Plants:
Interactive Identification and Information Retrieval.' CD-ROM, Version 1.0 for
MS-DOS. (CSIRO Publications: Melbourne.) Price: $180 (US$180 for customers
outside Australia and New Zealand) plus 10% for postage and handling.

Available from:

CSIRO Information Services
PO Box 89 (314 Albert Street)
East Melbourne Vic 3002
Phone +61 3 418 7217. Fax +61 3 419 0459

Payment by Bankcard (Australia and New Zealand), Mastercard, or Visa; or cheque
or money order payable to CSIRO.

Mike Dallwitz                                  Internet md at
CSIRO Division of Entomology                   Fax +61 6 246 4000
GPO Box 1700, Canberra ACT 2601, Australia     Phone +61 6 246 4075



We have the Digital Chart of the World, edition 1 with 4 CDROMS and
about 2 Gbytes of data.  It's obtainable from Ordnance Survey or from
the US Defense Mapping Agency at about $200
It's not very easy to use, but it has an incredible amount of data on
it for your money, including British data which you would have to pay
much more for, getting it any other way.

Yours RJP

Richard J. Pankhurst
Royal Botanic Garden
20A Inverleith Row

Phone: +44-31-552-7171 ext. 432
Fax:   +44-31-552-0382 or 0481


From: Eric Zurcher <ericz at>

Dave Rentz forwarded your query on to me. Actually, the Australian situation
isn't quite as tidy as Robin suggested. We use (at least) two different
electronic gazetteers here in CSIRO Division of Entomology. One is a very
simple programme I wrote myself (actually the programme itself is nearly
trivial - obtaining the data set is the tricky part!). It is based on a data
set of place names we obtained several years ago from AUSLIG (the Australian
Surverying and Land Information Group [formerly AUSMAP, for Australian
mapping]). The data set contained the place names and locations which were
available at that time as a printed gazetteer. I merely wrote a simple
programme to access that data. It originally ran on a Vax, but I have ported
it to SunOS and MS-DOS. The other is a more sophisticated system, called
GEOCODE, developed by ERIN (the Australin Environmental Resouces
Information Network). I don't know a great deal about it, but believe it is
meant to handle queries like "25 km NW of Bredbo". Our copy of the
programmed is an early release, running on SunOS. The intention of ERIN at
the time was to develop a system useable on PCs as well, but I don't know
whether the project was completed. Interestingly, most of the taxonomists
here prefer my crude, simple programme to the more elaborate one.

None of this is probably very helpful to you, other than as a reminder that
the hard part is finding a good set of gazetteer data, not in the programs
for accessing it!

I'm not aware of any CD-ROMs that would be of any help to you. In the US,
there is a gazetteer available via WWW (i.e., using Mosaic or Netscape). Its
URL is - you might want to take a look at it.

You might also want to take a look at some of the mapping work being done
here by ERIN. This is also best viewed via WWW; the ERIN homepage URL is

Let me know if you'd like any further information.


Eric Zurcher
CSIRO Division of Entomology
Canberra, Australia
E-mail: ericz at
Phone: +61 6 246 4218


  From: Scott Sundberg <sundbers at BCC.ORST.EDU>

  This would be of general interest to users of Taxacom.  Could you
  summarize what you learn after you've received responses?  I have heard
  of software for mapping in Oregon and a couple of other programs.  I'll
  check into it and get back to you later.

  - Scott Sundberg


  From: webern at (Nancy S. Weber)

  Please make a summary of the useful replies available over TAXACOM.  I
  for one would be interested in learning about CD-ROM software and other
  aspects of using them for botanical data.


  Nancy S. Weber
  Dept. Forest Science
  Oregon State University,
  Corvallis, OR 97331 USA

  (I work with Pezizalean fungi)


Stephen L. Jury  S.L.Jury at (Internet)
                 Herbarium Curator (RNG), Department of Botany,
                 University of Reading, Whiteknights, READING,
                 Berkshire, RG6 2AS. United Kingdom.
        Phone UK (01734) 318169  Overseas + 44 1734 318169
        FAX   UK (01734) 753676  Overseas + 44 1734 753676

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