[tdwg-tag] RDF/OWL Good Practices Task Group

Steve Baskauf steve.baskauf at vanderbilt.edu
Thu Sep 29 15:41:57 CEST 2011

I had promised myself that I was not going to say anything more on this 
subject but in the spirit of Hilmar's reply I will say one more thing.  
I believe that the fact that an RDF task group is even getting off the 
ground is due in a large part to your repeated efforts to educate the 
TDWG community on the potential of RDF/LinkedData and your examples of 
what can be done and how to do it.  I have made it no secret that I 
started out completely clueless about the subject and that much of what 
I've learned was from a combination of your posts, your help to me 
directly, and your examples.  In fact, when I want to know how to do 
something, the first place I go to look for examples is usually 
taxonconcept.org and as a consequence I've tried to cite and reference 
your work whenever possible.  With the creation of a task group, TDWG is 
now officially and seriously looking at RDF/Linked Data/Semantic Web as 
a tool.  I thought that was exactly what you've been wanting for years 
and why you expended so much effort toward creating your examples.    
That's why I'm so puzzled that you are upset that this group is starting up.


Hilmar Lapp wrote:
> Pete -
> let me just steal a quote from the numerous people who must have 
> stated this before in some form or another: When you set something 
> free, it's free. It is no longer yours to control.
> While I think most or all of us understand this very well for 
> open-source and certainly for public-domain software source code, this 
> is as true for publishing (freeing) data, and certainly as much for 
> freeing knowledge and ideas. If you put an idea out on a public 
> discussion forum, you've set your idea free. You've set it free for 
> others to reuse in whatever form they see fit. That's the power of 
> openness in advancing science, whether by open-sourcing code, 
> publishing data under CC0, or posting ideas on blogs (let alone 
> mailing lists).
> If you don't want your ideas reused, or can only tolerate certain 
> kinds of reuses but not others, then keep them to yourself. In my 
> mind, open groups such as mailing lists, and the TDWG interest groups 
> for that matter, are for merciless reuse, within the confines of 
> common professional ethics. There is nothing unethical, in my mind, if 
> someone were stimulated or persuaded by your efforts to change their 
> mind on something, even if to the extent that they now vigorously 
> argue that new standpoint as their own. What could be more convincing 
> about the merits of the efforts that led to that. If that's something 
> you can say you've accomplished within TDWG, I'd be very proud of it; 
> it's certainly much more than I ever have.
> We all know the saying of plagiarism being the sincerest form of 
> flattery. In that sense, if I ever got someone in TDWG to copy an idea 
> of mine and reproduce it as their own, it'd be one of my proudest 
> moments (unless, of course, it were one of my numerous bad ideas). 
> This isn't about you or me or us, Pete - at least as far as I'm 
> concerned the reason I'm in here is to advance our knowledge of 
> biodiversity so that in the end this world becomes a better place. If 
> in order to get there it takes someone else copying my idea as theirs, 
> that's fine - it won't dampen my energy for a second.
> And no, I won't say anything further on this matter - to me, it's just 
> really a huge distraction from what we, including you, Pete, can 
> really contribute to the group.
> -hilmar 
> On Sep 28, 2011, at 5:11 PM, Peter DeVries wrote:
>> Hi TDWG'ers,
>> I thought it would be good to explain in a different way how I see 
>> TDWG functioning.
>> There are people who take pride in their intellect. 
>> If it turns out that they are wrong they can experience a form of 
>> cognitive dissonance.
>> The either consciously or unconsciously convince themselves that the 
>> original person taking the "correct side" was wrong, or that they had 
>> actually heard it somewhere else (they were never on the "wrong" side)
>> In some cases, they are aware of what they are doing and actively try 
>> to punish or exclude the person who "corrected" them.
>> In the tale "The Emperor's New Clothes" 
>> ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Emperor's_New_Clothes 
>> <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Emperor%27s_New_Clothes> )
>> a child spoke up while others remained silent - afraid of what might 
>> happen to them if the told the King the truth.
>> The reason this is popular tale has been translated into 100 
>> languages, is that this kind of behavior is so common.
>> The irony is that not about intellect. but emotions.
>> Has anyone else on this list had the experience of be punished after 
>> correctly pointing out a flaw in someone else's logic?
>> Is this behavior at odds with the goals and best interests of the group?
>> I am concerned that there is only place in TDWG for the Kings and 
>> those that allow them to keep there Ego's happy.
>> Respectfully,
>> - Pete
>> On Mon, Sep 19, 2011 at 2:46 PM, joel sachs <jsachs at csee.umbc.edu 
>> <mailto:jsachs at csee.umbc.edu>> wrote:
>>     Greetings everyone,
>>     After some back and forth amongst Steve Baskauf, myself, Greg
>>     Whitbread,
>>     and the executive, we've decided to move forward with an RDF/OWL task
>>     group, convened under the TAG. Our task will be to deliver a document
>>     comprising
>>     i. use cases and competency questions;
>>     ii. well documented examples of addressing those use cases via
>>     rdf and
>>     sparql; and
>>     iii. discussion of advantages and disadvantages of the approaches
>>     illustrated by the examples.
>>     Our draft charter is at
>>     http://code.google.com/p/tdwg-rdf/wiki/CharterOfTG
>>     and we welcome comments, suggestions, and better ideas. One area
>>     where
>>     we're still open is the question of whether or not our
>>     deliverable should
>>     be an official Best Current Practice document [1]. The charter
>>     reflects
>>     our current feeling that it should not. After we deliver our
>>     "book of use
>>     cases and examples", options would include being re-chartered by
>>     the TAG
>>     to produce a best practices document, spinning off as a "Semantic Web
>>     Interest Group", or disbanding (either in triumph or despair).
>>     When we were planning to convene as an Interest Group, several of you
>>     accepted our invitation to serve as core members, and we hope that
>>     convening as a Task Group does not change your willingness to do
>>     so. If
>>     you would like to be a core member of the group, and we haven't yet
>>     contacted you, there's a good chance that we will. But don't
>>     wait! Feel
>>     free to volunteer for core membership. (And recall that you don't
>>     have to
>>     be a "core member to" contribute.)
>>     In regards timeline, I'd like to incorporate any feedback we
>>     receive, and
>>     submit the charter to the executive at the end of this week, in
>>     hopes of
>>     being chartered by New Orleans.
>>     Many thanks!
>>     Joel.
>>     1. http://www.tdwg.org/standards/status-and-categories/
>>     _______________________________________________
>>     tdwg-tag mailing list
>>     tdwg-tag at lists.tdwg.org <mailto:tdwg-tag at lists.tdwg.org>
>>     http://lists.tdwg.org/mailman/listinfo/tdwg-tag
>> -- 
>> ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>> Pete DeVries
>> Department of Entomology
>> University of Wisconsin - Madison
>> 445 Russell Laboratories
>> 1630 Linden Drive
>> Madison, WI 53706
>> Email: pdevries at wisc.edu <mailto:pdevries at wisc.edu>
>> TaxonConcept <http://www.taxonconcept.org/>  &  GeoSpecies 
>> <http://about.geospecies.org/> Knowledge Bases
>> A Semantic Web, Linked Open Data <http://linkeddata.org/>  Project
>> --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>> _______________________________________________
>> tdwg-tag mailing list
>> tdwg-tag at lists.tdwg.org <mailto:tdwg-tag at lists.tdwg.org>
>> http://lists.tdwg.org/mailman/listinfo/tdwg-tag
> -- 
> ===========================================================
> : Hilmar Lapp  -:- Durham, NC -:- informatics.nescent.org :
> ===========================================================

Steven J. Baskauf, Ph.D., Senior Lecturer
Vanderbilt University Dept. of Biological Sciences

postal mail address:
VU Station B 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) 343-6707

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: http://lists.tdwg.org/pipermail/tdwg-tag/attachments/20110929/39ff413b/attachment.html 

More information about the tdwg-tag mailing list