[Taxacom] Finding your species in Mendeley

Roderic Page r.page at bio.gla.ac.uk
Wed Dec 7 16:21:23 CST 2011

One thing which perhaps is getting lost in this discussion is that if we have the literature digitised and accessible then we don't need to "trust" nomenclators, we can simply look at the actual publication. Personally, as much as I admire the work nomenclators do (and continue to do) I'm much more reassured if I can see the evidence for myself.

Nomenclators are fundamentally just indexing strings in publications. At the moment they are a little like a Google search that says "here are to top ten results for your search", but doesn't give links you can click on to see the results for yourself. I doubt most people would find that satisfactory. But this is the situation facing most nomenclature.



On 7 Dec 2011, at 21:00, Jim Croft wrote:

> +1 on the 'manually'. It will take years, in fact we have already
> spent years on it, but it is a finite and doable task.
> The key issue is one of trust. We might use an item or link a computer
> found but we will check it. Entries by competent humans, on the other
> hand, are 'trusted' and considered verified, i.e. the link has been
> followed and the right thing is at the end of it. If we are going the
> do the 'let the computer find an add stuff' thing, a 'verified flag is
> critically important.
> Nomenclators are the foundation of everythng we do and as such they
> are not allowed to be wrong. They can be incomplete as a work in
> progress, even ambiguous if the ambiguity is explained, but they are
> not allowed to be wrong.
> Find a mistake in APNI, if we can't convince ourselves it is not a
> mistake, a pleasant and sentient human WILL fix it... Find something
> missing and we will unmiss it, but this might take a little longer...
> :)
> jim
> On Wed, Dec 7, 2011 at 12:15 PM, Geoffrey Read <gread at actrix.gen.nz> wrote:
>> I'm all for adding good live links to the primary literature. Best done
>> manually, but that will take years for WoRMS, and auto matching is worth
>> developing, as long as the resultant links are identified as unverified &
>> user beware, and I don't need to spend my days removing the real duds from
>> my area. Sorry if that sounds a bit pessimistic, and I'm eager to see how
>> itaxon develops, but of course.
>> Geoff
> -- 
> _________________
> Jim Croft ~ jim.croft at gmail.com ~ +61-2-62509499 ~ http://about.me/jrc
> 'A civilized society is one which tolerates eccentricity to the point
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>  - Robert Frost, poet (1874-1963)
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Roderic Page
Professor of Taxonomy
Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences
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University of Glasgow
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