(XML) feature-property-value

Noel Cross noelc at OEB.HARVARD.EDU
Fri Nov 26 13:21:04 CET 1999

Hello XML'ers,

A few minor comments with regard to Jean-Marc's recent proposals which, on
the whole, I find intriguing:

On Fri, 26 Nov 1999, Jean-Marc Vanel wrote:

> This feature-property-value triology is what I had in mind the first
> time I read about Delta.
> A few remarks:
>   1. the feature can be a hierarchy, like:
> leaf/lamina/abaxial_surface/vein_islands/indumentum/density

I wouldn't have thought that "density" would be the feature, but rather
the property, i.e.:

 feature = leaf/lamina/abaxial_surface/vein_islands/indumentum
 property = density
 value = (some value)

>    * we can turn the Flora of Australia GLOSSARY in a XML vocabulary in
>      XML Schema or RDF Schema syntax; each glossary entry should be
>      classified either as a feature, or a property, or a property-value;

Would properties be reified into features (as is done in RDF), or will
there be some other way to deal with properties of properties?
Intensifiers such as "very", for example.

>    * the current type of characters of Delta (multistate=enumerate,
>      integer, real numeric, text) will become type information for
>      properties in our new Taxonomic XML Schema; there is a standard for
>      data types in the 2nd part of W3C's XML Schema recommandation; we
>      must avoid to re-invent the wheel;

Note: the XML Schema part 2 of November 1999 is a Working Draft, not even
a Proposed Recommendation, let a alone a Recommendation.

>    * the proposed XDELTA format (http://www.bath.ac.uk/~ccslrd/delta/)
>      is too much a direct translation of a Delta file;

Of course, since its intent is to be a direct translation of the DELTA
format, this is not exactly a failing of the XDELTA format.

>    * I propose to have 3 XML Namespaces for our different XML
>      vocabularies:
>         o biological descriptions (generalities)
>         o botany
>         o zoology

I'm sure you don't mean to leave out Mycology, Bryology, etc.

Best wishes,


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