[tdwg-content] Why UUIDs alone are not adequate as GUIDs, was Re: ITIS TSNID to uBio NamebankIDs mapping [SEC=UNCLASSIFIED]

Tony.Rees at csiro.au Tony.Rees at csiro.au
Thu Jun 9 12:13:53 CEST 2011

Hi all,

Another use for a GUID (if it has not previously been mentioned) even where not resolvable is to identify two items as clones of one another (for example data or metadata records residing on different systems in multiple copies) rather than different, so that for example they are only actioned or counted once (an increasing issue with proliferation of data and metadata aggregators around the place...)

Of course if the GUID is an LSID then it can indicate the issuing/custodian agency as well, which can certainly assist in determining the "point of truth" for such data items.



From: tdwg-content-bounces at lists.tdwg.org [tdwg-content-bounces at lists.tdwg.org] On Behalf Of Paul Murray [pmurray at anbg.gov.au]
Sent: Thursday, 9 June 2011 5:46 PM
To: Kevin Richards
Cc: tdwg-content at lists.tdwg.org
Subject: Re: [tdwg-content] Why UUIDs alone are not adequate as GUIDs, was Re: ITIS TSNID to uBio NamebankIDs mapping [SEC=UNCLASSIFIED]

On 09/06/2011, at 1:23 PM, Kevin Richards wrote:

Valid, but often useless.  :-)

The only use I can think of is if you want to give something a logical id (that is, you don't want to use a database row id for whatever reason) but that is is never accessed as a thing in its own right.

For instance, you might want to identify taxon relationship objects in such a way that other inhabitants of the semantic web can annotate them, but you might not wish to serve up those objects as isolated atoms. Additionally, it may be the case that these relationships in your database do not have stable ids. Or, they might be indexed with a compound key that you do not want o issue some clunky compound URI or LSID for.

To accomplish this, you could give each relationship record a guid which would "follow it around". The relationship records are served up as part of a taxon concept - never on their own, perhaps they might have an rdf:isDefinedBy property pointing to the taxon concept that they are primariliy a part of.

In this case, naming these records with a urn:uuid: guid might make sense. A third party could keep the guid urn, the fact that it isDefinedBy the taxon id, and whatever information that that third party might want to attach to it, and expose that information to the web.


If you have received this transmission in error please notify us immediately by return e-mail and delete all copies. If this e-mail or any attachments have been sent to you in error, that error does not constitute waiver of any confidentiality, privilege or copyright in respect of information in the e-mail or attachments. Please consider the environment before printing this email.

More information about the tdwg-content mailing list