[tdwg-tag] Referring to GBIF distribution map in RDF

Roger Hyam rogerhyam at mac.com
Tue May 11 10:42:36 CEST 2010

Hi Rod,

What we were talking about the other days (and indeed in the corridors of last years TDWG) is the need for a polygon repository. It would be really nice is someone (GBIF?) ran a geoserver that you could register polygons with and once registered they were given a nice URI and became semantically linkable with their metadata in RDF. This would obviously need long term commitment. I'd do it if I had funding....

Within PESI we were talking about it in terms of the TDWG regions and possibly extending them to maritime regions but really there are endless lists of polygons - like the IUCN protected areas or how about the oil spill effected areas etc etc.

This probably doesn't answer your question!

Another approach would be to have a literal property with a value that is a Well-known text of the distribution.


This is the approach taken by DwC.

You could use the DwC property or make one up such as rod:hasFootprint="POLYGON ((10 20, 11 20, 11 21, 10 21, 10 20))"

You can use multipoint and other ways to describe the distribution data with well known text.

I am sure there are semantic and geospatial people who would object to almost any approach!

Good luck


On 10 May 2010, at 16:11, Roderic Page wrote:

> Dear All,
> I'm interested in referring to a GBIF distribution map in RDF, and am  
> having fun figuring out how to do it. One way is to use a c-squares- 
> based URI, see http://iphylo.blogspot.com/2010/05/referring-to-one-degree-s
> quare-in-rdf.html (http://tinyurl.com/33ba4kt).
> The idea is that each 1° × 1° square in a GBIF map has it's own c- 
> squares-based URI, e.g. http://bioguid.info/csquare:3317:364 , and  
> hence a distribution would be a list of these URIs (perhaps with the  
> number of records from each square).
> Any thoughts on this approach, and whether we have an existing  
> vocabulary to describe these relationships?
> Regards
> Rod
> ---------------------------------------------------------
> Roderic Page
> Professor of Taxonomy
> Graham Kerr Building
> University of Glasgow
> Glasgow G12 8QQ, UK
> Email: r.page at bio.gla.ac.uk
> Tel: +44 141 330 4778
> Fax: +44 141 330 2792
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