[Taxacom] classification of Class Rosopsida

Kenneth Kinman kennethkinman at webtv.net
Thu Apr 9 20:29:13 CDT 2009

Dear All,
       To answer Jim's questions, I would dismiss the third (scientific
research or alchemy?) as somewhat insulting and not worth a response.
The second is obvious, my classifications always aim toward a
"consensus" among a wide variety of "experts" (which also tends to help
end users who are not experts).      
       The first question (evidence, or just looks better) is the most
interesting.  I don't think it is necessarily appropriate or
advantageous to assume that the question or answer should be
"either/or".  Anyone who closely evaluates my classification would
realize it is based on a wide range of evidence (not only the
cladistically important evidence, but plesiomorphies and
ancestor-descendant relationships as well, and carefully considering
whether some are questionable as to whether they are really
plesiomorphic or synapomorphic).       
       That it "looks better", is more concise, and heuristically stores
as much information as possible, are all benefits that I have found can
be derived from this type of cladisto-eclectic classification.  I've put
a great deal of thought and time over the last 15 years into angiosperm
classification in particular.  Of the three angiopserm Classes that I
now recognize (Magnoliopsida, Liliopsida, and Rosopsida), the Rosopsida
is the most challenging.  I make no apologies for attempting a consensus
classification, and I believe it will convince both traditionalists and
strict cladists to slowly modify their classifications in a way that
brings them closer to one another (even though a single, wide-used
consensus classification may not emerge for another decade or two).       
          -------Ken Kinman        
P.S. As for the term "systematist", I don't think that should be
restricted to just those who concentrate on "cladistic systematization"
alone.  The latter is a specialty that has been given too much emphasis
in the past couple of decades, and that true classificationists (however
various people might define that category) have increasingly become a
minority.  Hopefully that trend will soon cease and reverse itself, so
that such specialties can work together rather than being at cross
J. Kirk Fitzhugh wrote:
Your very pertinent questions relate to the fact that many of us engage
in systematization, not classification. I'm a systematist, not a
classificationist. There's a profound difference. 
Jim Croft wrote: 
> Evidence?  Or does it just 'look better'? 
> Expert community compromise consensus?  Or personal divine
> Scientific research?  Or Alchemy? 
> The answer to these questions is VERY important. 

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