What needs to be done

Kevin Thiele kevin.thiele at PI.CSIRO.AU
Mon Jul 24 09:48:47 CEST 2000

At 09:34 PM 19/7/00 -0400, Stinger wrote:

>As much as I would
>like not to admit it, I have not yet been convinced that DELTA cannot
>function for us as the basis for taxonomic data structure.  We will
>never regulate descriptor terminology because creative careful
>observation and the creative and clear semantics involved in
>communicating those observations completely is the basis of all
>observational biology.  The strength of Systematics as a science is
>really in our diversity of ways of making observations and communicating

I agree completely concerning descriptors and creativity.

I think DELTA does need to be replaced because it's holding us back, not
moving us forward. This is happening for several reasons, one because it
was not created with extensibility in mind, the other because the DELTA
file format for storing descriptive data is intimately tied with one
particular program for manipulating descriptive data, and this is not good.
We need a truly flexible, extensible standard that belongs to the whole

Many of the elements in my proposed document are not covered by DELTA. I
think we need them, and have found that waiting for the DELTA standard to
be changed is not adequate.

Cheers - k

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