[Taxacom] validation of taxon names

Roderic Page r.page at bio.gla.ac.uk
Wed Feb 15 03:50:31 CST 2012


But isn't it bizarre that our field can't offer the kind of service Armand is looking for? 

Very simple questions are being asked:

1. Is this a name?
2. Is this the correct way to write it?
3. Is this name currently in use?
4. What other names are related to this name (e.g., synonyms, lexical variants)?
5. Where was this name published? Can I see that publication?

Yes, there will always be edge cases, but in general these are straightforward questions and yet we have failed to provide a simple, global tool to answer them.

Regards

Rod

On 14 Feb 2012, at 21:02, Stephen Thorpe wrote:

> Hi Armand,
> Your question opens a familiar "can of worms", as we say!
> Currently, there is no comprehensive source of validated scientific names, and certain vagueness in some ICZN Code articles makes it unlikely that there could ever be a robust notion of name availability.
> I work on Wikispecies to create something akin to what you want, except that I try to make the names verifiable by the user, rather than just saying "you can trust me". Hence, it involves work on the part of the user. Most users want someone else to do the work, and to be "spoon fed" with validated names, but this just isn't realistic ...
> 
> Cheers,
> Stephen
> 
> 
> 
> ________________________________
> From: Armand Turpel <armand.turpel.mnhn at gmail.com>
> To: taxacom at mailman.nhm.ku.edu 
> Sent: Tuesday, 14 February 2012 9:42 PM
> Subject: [Taxacom] validation of taxon names
> 
> Hi,
> 
> We have a database with over 80000 species taxon names which we want to 
> compare and validate against other databases. Doing this job isn’t very 
> easy:
> 
> 1. The majority of organizations only provide web interfaces to search 
> for single taxon names.
> 2. Copyrights of data are some times not very clear
> 3. Quality of data is doubtful. >
> - Lamia amputator Guérin-Méneville, 1844
> - Lamia amputator Guerin-Meneville, 1844
> - Lamia amputator Guérin-Méneville
> - …...
> 
> 
> The only organization we know that provide its whole database for 
> download is species2000 (catalogue of life > COL). We created a 
> postgresql version for the COL data from which it is possible to compare 
> a big number of taxon names in one run. Postgresql provide good fuzzy 
> string algorithms. But the COL data isn’t error free and it isn’t 
> complete for our region.
> 
> The question is: Which organization provide trustful, complete (as 
> possible) and full accessible data?
> 
> a+
> 
> arm
> 
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---------------------------------------------------------
Roderic Page
Professor of Taxonomy
Institute of Biodiversity, Animal Health and Comparative Medicine
College of Medical, Veterinary and Life Sciences
Graham Kerr Building
University of Glasgow
Glasgow G12 8QQ, UK

Email: r.page at bio.gla.ac.uk
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