critter names

Una Smith una at LANL.GOV
Thu Oct 11 09:58:18 CDT 2001

Doug Yanega wrote:

>                    I already have 65,000 species and 14,000 generic
>names in my database, and trying to look up each species name to see
>whether it's a noun or not, and each genus to determine its gender,
>and then manually enter this data in another set of fields is NOT
>practical at that scale.  You CANNOT automate the process, because you
>need to actually go to the original publication and see what the
>author designated. No database program will *ever* be able to do that.

Guessing at transmutation and translocation of epithets *can* be done
by computer.  But guessing isn't enough;  verification is necessary,

>     It requires *human labor*, and none of the available electronic
>resources have already invested this labor.

Actually, botanists have Index Kewensis, which attempts to list all
botanical taxonomic names ever published.

        Una Smith

Los Alamos National Laboratory, Mailstop K-710, Los Alamos, NM  87545

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