[Taxacom] validation of taxon names

Richard Pyle deepreef at bishopmuseum.org
Fri Feb 17 19:07:22 CST 2012

> OK, but I think this poses a big problem for biodiversity informatics,
that is,
> if they want to provide something that is actually useful to general users

> (including governments concerned with biosecurity and/or conservation
> issues, which require data of a certain kind)

Again, as I suggested, there are several ways to address this.  One (for the
taxonomically informed) is a graphic representation of usage history, like
what Ryan Schenk has demonstrated with his "synynym" app.  Others, for
governments and lay-folk, include the "Meta-Authority" approach (i.e., a
list of "meta-authorities" such as CoL, EOL, and many, many others that make
semi-authoritative declarations about what should be treated as valid, what
should not, and what classification to use, etc.), and the "I'm Feeling
Lucky" approach (an algorithm far more sophisticated than "what is the most
recent assertion?")

> yes, a biodiversity database could index species under their original
> combinations, e.g., Diarthrocera formicaephila Broun, 1893, and
> then simply list alternative names in chronological order, which,
> in the present case would end with: Diarthrocera formicaephila
> Broun, 1893 according to Maddison in Macfarlane et al. (2010)

None of the solutions I have in mind would do this.


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