[tdwg-content] Treatise on Occurrence, tokens, and basisOfRecord [SEC=UNCLASSIFIED]

joel sachs jsachs at csee.umbc.edu
Thu Oct 28 17:58:27 CEST 2010

Hey Rich, Hilmar, Paul, and everyone -

I liked the definition from a couple of weeks ago:

"An occurrence is a tuple consiting of time, place, individual, and some 
optional properties."

What's that lacking?

Thanks -

On Wed, 27 Oct 2010, Richard Pyle wrote:

>> Perhaps the word is 'product'? I am thinking along the lines
>> that the cartesian product of the set of all Individuals and
>> the set of all Events is the set of all possible Occurrences.
>> Unfortunately, 'intersection' is quite a good word if we are
>> thinking in natural language, and 'product' is not - not
>> unless you are already thinking in terms of a mathematical vocabulary.
> Hmmm, thinking about the mathematical definition of "product", it would seem
> to me that the "product" would be some sort of representation of all
> *possible* combinations of unique events and unique individuals; rather than
> just the tiny, tiny, tiny subset of those that ever existed, and the even
> tinier, tinier, tinier susbset that have actually been documented.
> In database-speak, an Occurrence is simply a many-to-many join between
> Events and Individuals, with a few additional properties.
> ...which is what I *used* to use the word "intersection" for.
> It reminds me of the time when, as a young undergrad, I was informed that I
> could no longer use the word "significant" in the sense of "important"....
> Aloha,
> Rich
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