Farewell to species (but not yet!)

Fri Feb 4 11:37:59 CST 2000

Dear listers,

        I don't disagree that a "permanent" uninomial could be a useful
thing, but I wonder about adding a third series of names to
organisms (common, scientific [binomial] and uninomial).  Do we
really want yet another layer of infomation that would be necessary
to talk to at least certain groups?

Don McAllister wrote:

> . . . Isn't that a bit too
> much to ask for an ethologists, geneticist, biotechnologist,
> herbalist, bird watcher,  etc. that they all learn basic taxonomic and
> nomenclatorial procedure?

Not if they are going to attempt systematic/phylogenetic research!

> I am not sure how invariate chemical nomenclature is, but everyone
> seems to know what I mean by sodium chloride or NaCl around the world.

Yes, but that is because that is what it is!  There is no confusion
as to what this compound is made of, how it is related to sodium
and chloride, or how it is related to other sodium or chloride
compounds.  Organisms are much more complex, and
relationships are not immediately obvious just by looking at them.
Needless to say, organisms are extremely chemically complex as
well, and so to analyze an organism on the chemical level is
completely different from analyzing NaCl!


Dr. James K. Adams
Dept. of Natural Science and Math
Dalton State College
213 N. College Drive
Dalton, GA  30720
Phone: (706)272-4427; fax: (706)272-2533
U of Michigan's President James Angell's
  Secret of Success: "Grow antennae, not horns"

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