[Taxacom] Why stability?

Nico Franz nico.franz at asu.edu
Wed Apr 29 12:19:53 CDT 2015

Thank you, Peter.

   My post links at the end to a paper describing Avibase (
http://avibase.bsc-eoc.org/). The paper's Abstract states:

"Avibase has been successfully used to describe and organize 844,000
species-level and 705,000 subspecies-level taxonomic concepts across every
major bird taxonomic checklist of the last 125 years."

   I think this system relevantly approaches a best-of-both-worlds
solution, given the stated purpose. We can likely retain Linnaean naming in
full - benefitting from the reference services it provides for humans daily
and also over time (though with limits) - while building semantics on top
that contextualize and integrate meanings at a more granular level that
computers can process at greater scales.

   Another exploration of this is here:
Tiny scale, but fairly deep taxonomic semantics. Linnaean names too.

Cheers, Nico

On Tue, Apr 28, 2015 at 1:12 PM, Peter Hovenkamp <phovenkamp at casema.nl>

> Nico,
> I'm not sure what you offer up for support.
> But what you propose makes me wonder: suppose a system like you describe
> is in operation, how would you meaningfully query it?
> That's acknowledging that your point is entirely valid: identifying unique
> concepts with unique identifiers results in more concepts than we humans
> can deal with. But could we deal with it to the extent that we can instruct
> computers do deal with it in a meaningful way?
> Best,
> Peter Hovenkamp

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