[tdwg-content] Proposed changes to Darwin Core

John Wieczorek tuco at berkeley.edu
Wed Jul 23 00:27:42 CEST 2014

Hi Joel,

Is this meant to call everyone's attention to the issues? To elicit further
commentary? Or to make a specific proposal for action?

I suspect it is to put forward your positions on issue 205. If that is
correct, I propose bringing those positions here for discussion.



On Tue, Jul 22, 2014 at 5:16 PM, joel sachs <jsachs at csee.umbc.edu> wrote:

> Hi Everyone,
> I’d like to direct everyone’s attention to issues 204 - 226 in the Darwin
> Core issue tracker [1]. These issues describe proposed changes to the
> Darwin Core standard, and were entered back in January in follow up to the
> Documenting Darwin Core workshop held at TDWG 2013. These proposals reflect
> what the organizers of that workshop believe to be the consensus that was
> reached during the workshop’s four sessions in Florence.
> The background for this is that, for some time, a number of TDWGers have
> been working towards an applicability statement to provide guidance on
> expressing Darwin Core data using RDF. In the course of this work, it
> became apparent that the semantics of Darwin Core itself needed a slight
> re-think, in order to be usable on the semantic web. The goal was to be
> backward-compatible, i.e. to introduce and re-define terms in a way that
> does not affect the meaning of existing Darwin Core spreadsheet data, but
> which provides the semantic grounding necessary for meaningful RDF. I think
> this goal has, for the most part, been realized. If you have examples to
> the contrary, please share them.
> Steve Baskauf provides a good overview of the proposals in Issue 204. Of
> all of them, only Issue 205 (the introduction of a class to represent the
> taxonomically homogenous units that are described in Darwin Core occurrence
> data) was contentious, primarily because we disagreed on a good name for
> the class. (“We” refers to the ad-hoc group that worked on translating the
> notes from the workshop into concrete proposals - John Wieczorek, James
> Macklin, Markus Döring, Rich Pyle, Tim Robertson, Bob Morris, Hilmar Lapp,
> Steve Baskauf, Gregor Hagedorn, and myself.) I’ve mentioned my own concerns
> as a comment on that issue.
> There is one proposal that had the support of the group, but that is not
> yet entered into the Issue Tracker - the deprecation of dwc:basisOfRecord.
> The motivation for this proposal is that dwc:basisOfRecord is widely
> misunderstood and inconsistently used, coupled with the fact that GBIF
> currently uses basisOfRecord with the semantics of the (to be proposed)
> dwc:hasEvidence term. However, we have held back on proposing
> "hasEvidence", as there remain some unresolved issues regarding how it
> would be used. This will likely be left as future work, perhaps to be
> tackled at TDWG 2014.
> Many thanks to all who participated in the workshop, and to all who take
> the time to review its outcomes.
> Joel.
> 1. https://code.google.com/p/darwincore/issues/list ["ID" -> "Sort Down"
> to see in order]
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