ICZN Code questions

Richard Zander Richard.Zander at MOBOT.ORG
Fri Aug 23 07:30:00 CDT 2002

Well, I figure that book and magazine publishing in digital format simply
hasn't attained durable media, unchangeable and indefinitely archived
content, non-proprietary format, and other requirements that would give an
electronic publication the same usefulness we have in paper copy.

The amazing searchability and broad dissemination of electronic copies is
not enough to make up for this lack. For example, CD-Roms have a lifetime of
say 20-30 years; who will copy the taxonomic information on these to new
media; who will be able to read them with Win2025 or a microchip player or

Although the government and libraries might take the lead in developing a
universal medium and some standard universally searchable format (HTML4?
XML?) to replace hardcopy scientific literature, I think commercial ventures
are being relied upon, and I haven't seen such a venture that I would trust
as a long-term repository of taxonomic information.

Richard H. Zander
Missouri Botanical Garden
PO Box 299
St. Louis, MO 36166-0299
Email: richard.zander at mobot.org

-----Original Message-----
From: Richard Pyle [mailto:deepreef at BISHOPMUSEUM.ORG]
Sent: Thursday, August 22, 2002 5:35 PM
Subject: Re: [TAXACOM] ICZN Code questions

> The Green Book is a good Code; it is the best we could get given
> the time.  Many of the issues that have been posted last week (I
> was on vacation) were presented to the ICZN, some were even in
> the draft version (such as original spelling as the invariant
> epithet), but in the end they all failed. And part of that was
> because the digital community was not understood nor fully
> represented. Oh, well ... ancient history now.

My question is, with the incredible (and incredibly recent) transformation
of the digital age; including it's broader acceptance among those once
branded as Ludites -- has the time yet come to revisit some of these
once-failed ideas again in a formal ICZN context?  Anyone with any sence of
perspective *KNOWS* we're inevitably headed that way anyway.  The question
is, are the nerves still too raw?  The technology not yet fully matured?
Should we wait another year or decade?  Or, is it now time for the case be
built again?


Richard L. Pyle
Ichthyology, Bishop Museum
1525 Bernice St., Honolulu, HI 96817
Ph: (808)848-4115, Fax: (808)847-8252
email: deepreef at bishopmuseum.org
"The opinions expressed are those of the sender, and not necessarily those
of Bishop Museum."

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