[tdwg-content] Name is species concept thinking

Richard Pyle deepreef at bishopmuseum.org
Thu Jun 10 22:36:40 CEST 2010

Hmmm....OK, I'm not sure I follow, then.  

I certainly wouldn't use nameAccordingTo/ID to reference attributes of a
taxon concept -- that simply points to a documentation source in which a
usage instance occurred.  However, I *do* think that acceptedNameUsage/ID
could resolve to an object that would lead you directly to all the name
mappings, at least.  As for the additional information to resolve concepts
(e.g., diagnoses, keys, etc.), I have always imagined that sort of thing as
a service layer that assembles sets of usage instances and establishes typed
relationships among them.  This, then, would bridge to the correct set of
concept-definition information (diagnoses, etc.).

Also I thought that's what taxonConcept/ID was intended for? (I was never
very clear on what it's exact intended purpose was.)

So....perhaps I should ask you to re-state your original question? The
premise of your question was, "The name is the concept"; which is what I
disagreed with.  Also, I'm not sure what you mean by "these nameID's".  As
far as I can tell, all of the XXXXNameID terms in DwC have been superseded.
The only exception seems to be "scientificNameID" of 2009-08-24, which is
listed as "recommended", and which is said to replace "taxonNameID" of
2009-04-24.  But the 2009-07-06 version of "scientificNameID" is said to be
replaced by "taxonID" of 2009-08-04. I'm not quite sure how to interpret



	From: Peter DeVries [mailto:pete.devries at gmail.com] 
	Sent: Thursday, June 10, 2010 10:09 AM
	To: Richard Pyle
	Cc: tdwg-content at lists.tdwg.org
	Subject: Re: [tdwg-content] Name is species concept thinking
	Hi Richard 

	You are agreeing with me. 

	My point is that the DarwinCore should include an identifier that
resolves to a site that provides some information about how that concept is
	1) First by mapping the concept to the various names and related
	2) By providing additional information that helps one determine if a
specimen is a close match to that species concept.

	The field nameAccordingTo does not provide this kind of information.

	- Pete
	On Thu, Jun 10, 2010 at 2:55 PM, Richard Pyle
<deepreef at bishopmuseum.org> wrote:

		I don't think that's right.  Names are pointers to species
concepts, but are not concepts themselves.  A label for a species concept
would look like "Aus bus sensu Author/Citation" or "Aus bus sec.
Author/Citation".  Also, of course, the name is not, in itself, a unique
identifier (in something like 10% of cases -- which in my mind is
		Also, I disagree with the idea that Aedes triseriatus and
Ochlerotatus triseriatus necessarily refer to different taxon concepts.  To
me, the "concept" is the circumscribed set of organisms.  If I curcumscribe
a set of organisms that I label with "Aedes triseriatus", and then later
decide that this set of organisms is best classified in the genus
Ocherotatus, then naming it as such does not change the circumscribed set of
organisms.  It certainly may have implications on the concepts for the
genera "Aedes" and "Ochlerotatus", but in my mind, it has no effect on the
implied circumscription (=Concept, sensu me) of what is indicated by the
species epithet "triseriatus".
		I do not think it makes sense to include hierarchical
clasification as part of the terminal taxon "concept".  Taxa at each
hierarchical rank are, in my mind, defined by their contents; not their
higher classification.
		The way I visualize it, there is a many:many relationship
between names and concepts (I *think* this applies no matter what you mean
by "name", and no matter what you mean by "concept").  The same
circumscription of organisms can be labelled by many different names, and
the same name may apply to many different circumscriptions of organisms (not
just homonyms/homographs, but also lumper/splitter issues).
		Therefore, I don't think it is appropriate to try to equate
names:concepts as 1:1, or even many:1.
		P.S. I certainly think that "Aedes triseriatus" and
"Ochlerotatus triseriatus" are different "things", just not (necessarily)
different taxon concepts.  Actually, from an informatics perspective, I
think that treating these different combinations as unique/identified
objects doesn't gain us much.  I think it's *MUCH* more robust to parse out
the different individual usages of each combination as the identified
objects, then derive the unique combinations/spellings/etc. from those
usages.  If the notion of indexing usages seems too intimidating, then start
with the easy ones -- like the original useages of each of the name elements
("Aedes", "Ochlerotatus", and "triseriatus"), and the key treatments (e.g.,
whoever first combined "triseriatus" with the genus "Ochlerotatus", and/or
whoever robustly defined alternate concepts for each).


			From: tdwg-content-bounces at lists.tdwg.org
[mailto:tdwg-content-bounces at lists.tdwg.org] On Behalf Of Peter DeVries
			Sent: Thursday, June 10, 2010 9:38 AM
			To: tdwg-content at lists.tdwg.org
			Subject: [tdwg-content] Name is species concept
			I was looking through the latest DarwinCore and
comments related to the TaxonConceptID. 

			Since the name serves as both a unique identifier
and a phylogenetic hypothesis, you are effectively saying that observations

			Aedes triseriatus


			Ochlerotatus triseriatus 

			Are separate species concepts, and should therefore
be treated as separate things.

			i.e. The name is the concept.

			Also since there are several name variants for each
"species", how do you distinguish which of these nameID's are the same
species and which are different?

			- Pete

			Pete DeVries
			Department of Entomology
			University of Wisconsin - Madison
			445 Russell Laboratories
			1630 Linden Drive
			Madison, WI 53706
			GeoSpecies Knowledge Base 
			About the GeoSpecies Knowledge Base

	Pete DeVries
	Department of Entomology
	University of Wisconsin - Madison
	445 Russell Laboratories
	1630 Linden Drive
	Madison, WI 53706
	GeoSpecies Knowledge Base 
	About the GeoSpecies Knowledge Base

More information about the tdwg-content mailing list