[tdwg-content] Information about how controlled vocabularies would be handled under the draft Standards Documentation Specification
steve.baskauf at vanderbilt.edu
Tue Mar 14 04:06:06 CET 2017
I think there has been sentiment in the past to develop additional
informative documents to go along with (but not be a part of) our
standards that would provide more examples, how-to's etc. That would
certainly be helpful for a group wanting to develop a controlled
vocabulary. At this point we want to get things right in the standards
documents themselves (particularly the normative parts). The helpful
ancillary documents can be developed as we get more experience applying
the standard, kind of like what's going on with the DwC Q&A site.
Matt Yoder wrote:
> Well I'm not sure if +1s are worthwhile, but I think you nicely
> defined the issues.
> I hope that people don't get caught up on the "preferred labels"
> issue. If it is the major issue then an ontology may be overkill
> (e.g. why bother minting a URI if for all intents and practical
> purposes you're going to require a unique string reference). I think
> that CVs could be ontologies, or SKOS concept schemes, either should
> lead to improvements, both are in theory better than simple strings.
> * I'm a user who is unhappy with what is being expressed under a DC term
> * I want to propose an improvement (let's call this a CV)
> * I understand what I want to emphasize (e.g. precision, simplicity of
> reference, ability to infer, ability to compute, multi-lingual
> support, ability to quickly amend, ability to prevent quick changes,
> ability to quickly select, etc.)
> * I consult a bullet point list that describes the pros/cons of using
> a SKOS or an ontology
> * I select one or the other formalization, and use it to propose the improvement
> A simple bullet point list that specifically points out the pros/cons
> of using SKOS vs. an ontology would be key in this scenario. If I use
> X I get Y,Z, if I use A I get B,C. Where YZBC are things the user
> wants to emphasize.
> On Sat, Mar 11, 2017 at 8:50 AM, Steve Baskauf
> <steve.baskauf at vanderbilt.edu> wrote:
>> At the TDWG meeting in December, I led an informative session describing the
>> main points of the draft Standards Documentation Specification (SDS) and its
>> sister standard, the draft Vocabulary Management Specification. At that
>> session, some participants seem to be taken aback at the prescription by the
>> SDS that controlled vocabularies should be SKOS concept schemes rather than
>> ontologies. There wasn't enough time at the meeting to fully explore that
>> issue and I hoped that it would come up for further discussion during the
>> public comment period.
>> We are now midway through the 30 day public comment period on the SDS and so
>> far, that issue has not come up. I was recently listening to the recording
>> of John Wieczorek's nice Darwin Core Hour presentation on controlled
>> vocabularies and it was apparent to me that the creation of controlled
>> vocabularies is an issue of interest to many in the community. So I've
>> written a blog post
>> (http://baskauf.blogspot.com/2017/03/controlled-values-again.html) that
>> attempts to explain in non-technical terms how the SDS specifies that
>> controlled vocabularies should be expressed in machine-readable form. For
>> those who are interested in the gory details, I've also included at the end
>> a more detailed explanation of the rationale for specifying that controlled
>> vocabularies should, in most cases, be described as SKOS concept schemes
>> rather than ontologies.
>> If you care about the creation of controlled vocabularies, you should take a
>> look at this post and create an official comment if there are things you
>> don't like about the approach taken in the proposed specification. Our
>> review manager, Dag Endresen, has requested that issues be raised on the
>> issue tracker at https://github.com/tdwg/vocab/issues . However,
>> historically back-and-forth discussion about proposed standards has also
>> taken place on this list, so I think that responding here for clarification
>> and discussion would be appropriate prior to submitting an official comment.
>> Steven J. Baskauf, Ph.D., Senior Lecturer
>> Vanderbilt University Dept. of Biological Sciences
>> postal mail address:
>> PMB 351634
>> Nashville, TN 37235-1634, U.S.A.
>> delivery address:
>> 2125 Stevenson Center
>> 1161 21st Ave., S.
>> Nashville, TN 37235
>> office: 2128 Stevenson Center
>> phone: (615) 343-4582, fax: (615) 322-4942
>> If you fax, please phone or email so that I will know to look for it.
>> tdwg-content mailing list
>> tdwg-content at lists.tdwg.org
Steven J. Baskauf, Ph.D., Senior Lecturer
Vanderbilt University Dept. of Biological Sciences
postal mail address:
Nashville, TN 37235-1634, U.S.A.
2125 Stevenson Center
1161 21st Ave., S.
Nashville, TN 37235
office: 2128 Stevenson Center
phone: (615) 343-4582, fax: (615) 322-4942
If you fax, please phone or email so that I will know to look for it.
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