[Taxacom] pro-iBioshphere project Web Site launched

Paul Kirk p.kirk at cabi.org
Fri Nov 16 08:07:57 CST 2012

If links (via IDs) are what we need then we are going to need a heap load of 'same as' in some mahusive database. My experience of the last decade or so is that once one puts stuff on the web (e.g. IF) so that the content can be reused / aggregated / harvested (e.g. via open web services) everyone and his dog takes a copy and applies their local ID (e.g. CoL, GBIF, EoL, Genbank ...) and exposes it for, in this example, a text string representing a scientific name applied to a fungus ... which already has a persistent ID (from May 2005).

You all have a good weekend ... and reuse, don't reinvent ... :-)


From: taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu [taxacom-bounces at mailman.nhm.ku.edu] on behalf of Roderic Page [r.page at bio.gla.ac.uk]
Sent: 16 November 2012 13:07
Subject: Re: [Taxacom] pro-iBioshphere project Web Site launched

> provided they can be linked up into a "data lake" and not remain as "data puddles".

+1 for linked up. It seems to me that the lack of links is a major obstacle to infrastructure delivering the benefits that it promises. In a ranty mood, I challenged the TDWG RDF community to demonstrate what using RDF has achieved, and the results were somewhat underwhelming (http://iphylo.blogspot.co.uk/2011/10/reflections-on-tdwg-rdf.html )

I wonder if one way forward is try and map out the connections we need to do useful things (both for taxonomy and broader biodiversity questions), compare this with what we have, then determine what needs to be done to remove the log jam (Cyndy Parr created a network diagram between different data providers for a recent paper http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.tree.2011.11.001 which asks a somewhat different question ).

This might also be a way to tease apart the two competing explanations for lack of progress, lack of content and lack of links. If we can identify sources of content (e.g., digitised museum collections) but lack of links (e.g., to genome database or literature citing those specimens) then links are the issue. If we need data on host-parasite interactions but these haven't been studied (or have been but aren't digitised) then the problem is content.



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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Blog: http://iphylo.blogspot.com
Home page: http://taxonomy.zoology.gla.ac.uk/rod/rod.html
Citations: http://scholar.google.co.uk/citations?hl=en&user=4Z5WABAAAAAJ


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