[Taxacom] Herbarium sequence revisited

Thomas G. Lammers lammers at uwosh.edu
Tue Jun 6 07:46:10 CDT 2006

At 02:50 AM 6/6/2006, Chapman, Alex wrote:
>My interpretation of these previous discussions is that most contributors 
>believed that a systematic sequence (as opposed to alphabetic) was the 
>preferred one if the opportunity arose, however, adoption of APG may be 
>premature (as at January 2002).  In June 2006, my feeling is that the 
>basic ordinal framework is now strongly supported and unlikely to change 
>topology in any radical way.  However, as Peter Stevens acknowledged in 
>1999, "even with the APG system, there are very, very many ways of 
>arranging families in a linear sequence".  My question is - has anyone 
>attempted to define a linear sequence of families aligned to the APG II 
>ordinal framework (and below) and has it been implemented in a herbarium 
>of reasonable size?  If so, what is the user experience - for both 
>curators and visitors.  If it was considered but rejected as an option, 
>what were the perceived problems (and what system was subsequently adopted)?
>Our team here would value any insights TAXACOM list members may have on 
>this subject.

Here is a totally radical thought, that basically just represents thinking 
out loud.

Basic premise: a linear sequence seems antithetical to our tree-like model 
of evolution, yet some of us desire that thearrangement of families relate 
to phylogeny.

Would it be at all possible to arrange cabinets not in linear rows, but in 
*clusters*???   Islands representing the various APG II orders?  And the 
allied clusters nmearer one another?  It would probably be terribly 
wasteful of floor space, but that might depend on the footprint 
available.  In some spaces, would it perhaps be a more efficient use of 
space?? (I have a hard time conceptualizing in 3-D so I can't say.)

In any case, it might be something to consider, for folks who have rejected 
the ease and convenience of the alphabet.

Thomas G. Lammers, Ph.D.

Associate Professor and Curator of the Herbarium (OSH)
Department of Biology and Microbiology
University of Wisconsin Oshkosh
Oshkosh, Wisconsin 54901-8640 USA

e-mail:       lammers at uwosh.edu
phone:      920-424-1002
fax:           920-424-1101

Plant systematics; classification, nomenclature, evolution, and 
biogeography of the Campanulaceae s. lat.

"Today's mighty oak is yesterday's nut that stood his ground."
                                                               -- Anonymous

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