[Taxacom] Why stability?

Peter Hovenkamp phovenkamp at casema.nl
Wed Apr 29 15:20:23 CDT 2015


Nico,

I still wonder (and that was the main question in my previous post) how 
anyone will be able to select, for any particular query on such a 
database, the concept that is to be used in the query. Do you envisage 
"concepts of concepts", allowing a querier to limit the query to at 
least a subset of concepts? Or what?

Best,

Peter
Nico Franz schreef op 29-Apr-15 om 7:19 PM:
> 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:
> http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0118247
> 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>
> wrote:
>
>> 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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