Topic 3: GUIDs for Taxon Names and Taxon Concepts

Donald Hobern dhobern at GBIF.ORG
Mon Nov 7 10:47:35 CET 2005


I never meant my post to come across as a criticism of your level of detail
(or anyone else's).  I believe that all of the messages that have been sent
contribute to an understanding of the problem space that a GUID solution
must address.  I just wanted to limit expectations as to what we could hope
to solve within these discussions.

Best wishes,


Donald Hobern (dhobern at
Programme Officer for Data Access and Database Interoperability
Global Biodiversity Information Facility Secretariat
Universitetsparken 15, DK-2100 Copenhagen, Denmark
Tel: +45-35321483   Mobile: +45-28751483   Fax: +45-35321480

-----Original Message-----
From: Taxonomic Databases Working Group GUID Project
[mailto:TDWG-GUID at LISTSERV.NHM.KU.EDU] On Behalf Of Richard Pyle
Sent: 07 November 2005 10:37
Subject: Re: Topic 3: GUIDs for Taxon Names and Taxon Concepts

Thanks, Donald -- and my apologies for interpreting too much detail in your
request. The question of whether concepts need their own GUIDs, vs. being
represented by Name-GUID+Publication-GUID, as posed in your original Post on
this "Topic 3", seemed to me a more specific question than the issue of what
a "Name" object is or should be -- so I had calibrated my level of
specificity in my response too precisely.

I understand and agree that the focus should be broader at this stage, and I
will re-calibrate the level of specificity of my comments accordingly.

> For example, Yde's suggestions about
> fundamentally different expectations among zoologists and
> botanists need to be addressed in the TCS group.

It was discussed among the TCS group -- at GREAT length.  There seems no
easy answer, other than "different solutions for different Codes", which
seems to me to be the genesis of a terrible future legacy....

It all boils down to the distinction of which attributes apply to a Name
object, vs. which apply to usage instances.  The botanical approach stacks
more attributes on the Name object, whereas the zoological approach tends to
put them more on the usage instances.  But as you suggest, this is something
best saved for a Taxonomy GUID subgroup discussion.

In any case, thanks for your clarification of the focus.


Richard L. Pyle, PhD
Database Coordinator for Natural Sciences
Department of Natural Sciences, Bishop Museum
1525 Bernice St., Honolulu, HI 96817
Ph: (808)848-4115, Fax: (808)847-8252
email: deepreef at

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