[Taxacom] Sorry, but you are out-of-line

Stephen Gaimari SGaimari at cdfa.ca.gov
Tue Nov 16 12:08:49 CST 2010

PDF/A is the archiving standard NOW. It is the ISO standard NOW. It has
been developed specifically for long-term archiving according to what we
understand NOW about long-term archiving. The fonts/metadata are the
standards NOW. We don't know what these standards will be in 200 years,
and the only thing I am quite sure of (with the same surety as those
suggesting that it will be) is that they will not be the same as today. 

This is not an objection to long-term archiving, which I think is a good
idea. It is an objection to allowing such things to be an accepted
medium as THE single primary source for a nomenclatural act. 


Dr. Stephen D. Gaimari
Program Supervisor (Entomology)
Plant Pest Diagnostics Center
California Department of Food and Agriculture
3294 Meadowview Road
Sacramento, CA 95832, USA
Tel. 916-262-1131, Fax 916-262-1190
E-mail sgaimari at cdfa.ca.gov

-----Original Message-----
From: taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
[mailto:taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu] On Behalf Of Arthur Chapman
Sent: Tuesday, November 16, 2010 5:10 AM
To: taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] Sorry, but you are out-of-line

I'd just like to add something to what Doug has said about PDF

PDF/A is the archiving standard for storing documents (used by 
businesses, banks, governments and others to archive documents).  It is 
neither platform dependent or indeed, software itself. It is ISO 
standard 19005-1:2005.  It is a reduced version of PDF (also an ISO 
standard) that has been developed specifically for long-term Archiving.

PDF/A will be readable into the future for a number of reasons - the 
document itself stores everything internally (fonts, metadata, etc.) 
allowing it to be read into the future without having to have the 
specific fonts available in the operating system.

PDF/A is open source and as such the code for deciphering the document 
can be stored along with the document itself, making the document 
completely independent of software, operating system, etc.  Digital 
Archiving agencies/organisations already store this information. PDF/A 
compliant documents can be prepared directly from a range of software, 
or even directly from XML or *R*, etc.

As to Peer-Review.  The problem I have is with mandating peer-review 
into the Code(s).  There are many different degrees of peer-review (as 
already discussed), so it would be impractical to police. Also, it would

be extremely difficult 50, 100 years down the line to try and determine 
if a name was validly published through having to determine if a 
particular article in a particular journal had been peer-reviewed or

Many of these issues are discussed in the supporting documentation for 
changes to the Botanical Code cited earlier in this discussion.

PS - I have removed the "replied to" information for the sake of


Arthur D. Chapman
Toowoomba, Australia


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