[tdwg-tag] canonicalScientificName

Peter Desmet peter.desmet at umontreal.ca
Tue Mar 13 23:58:47 CET 2012

Sorry, forgot to include TAG mailing list.

On Tue, Mar 13, 2012 at 15:27, Peter Desmet <peter.desmet at umontreal.ca> wrote:
> Hi everyone,
> In a recent tweet [1] Roderic Page reminded me that in Darwin Core, we
> don't have a ready-to-use scientificName field. The definition for
> scientificName [2] asks for the full verbose name, including authors.
> I think this is a good definition (see below), but it also means that
> in a lot of use cases, names need to be parsed before they can be used
> or matched. I am currently helping collections publish their data for
> Candensys [3] and as a data producer I am happy we can provide all the
> information we have in scientificName, but as a data user, I get
> frustrated every time I see those long verbose botanical names with
> multiple authors. I am convinced that our data would be more usable if
> we had an additional canonicalScientificName term.
> Which is why I am now officially requesting it on the Darwin Core code
> site: http://code.google.com/p/darwincore/issues/detail?id=150 (see
> below). This has been discussed in detail before [4], but no consensus
> was reached. I hope we can get our act together this time!
> Regards,
> Peter Desmet
> --
> [1] https://twitter.com/#!/rustyrussell22/status/179500954901692417
> [2] http://rs.tdwg.org/dwc/terms/index.htm#scientificName
> [3] http://www.canadensys.net
> [4] http://lists.tdwg.org/pipermail/tdwg-content/2010-November/thread.html#1976
> ==New Term Recommendation==
> Submitter: Peter Desmet
> Justification: The scientific name is probably the most used element
> of an occurrence/taxon, but currently Darwin Core does not provide a
> single ready-to-use-field for this. A canonicalScientificName with the
> scientific name as a uninomial, binomial or trinomial could solve this
> problem.
> The current terms are not sufficient:
> - scientificName: verbose, used to record all components of a
> scientific name (if available), including authorship(s) and
> rankmarker(s). It is critical to keep this definition, as this term is
> sometimes the only place to share certain information, e.g.:
> quadrinomials, intermediate botanical authors, hybrid formulas, etc.
> The disadvantage of only having this verbose notation is that the user
> needs to parse the name before he/she can use or match it.
> - genus, specificEpithet, infraspecificEpithet: concatenated, this
> terms are identical to the canonicalScientificName for genera, species
> and infraspecific taxa. For higher taxa or infrageneric taxa, these
> terms are not sufficient. In addition, there is some ambiguity
> regarding the genus definition: for synonyms, is it the accepted genus
> or the genus that is part of the synonym name? See:
> http://lists.tdwg.org/pipermail/tdwg-content/2010-November/002052.html.
> In the former case, the genus cannot be used to concatenate a
> canonicalScientificName.
> The need for this term has been discussed thoroughly already (see:
> http://lists.tdwg.org/pipermail/tdwg-content/2010-November/thread.html#1976),
> but no consensus was reached. I'd like to reopen the discussion and I
> hope that a consensus can be reached quickly, so our data can be used
> more easily.
> Definition: The scientific name as a uninomial, binomial or trinomial.
> When forming part of an Identification, this should be the name in
> lowest level taxonomic rank that can be determined. This term should
> not contain authorship(s), rankmarker(s) or identification
> qualifications. If the scientific name cannot be expressed as a uni-,
> bi- or trinomial (e.g. hybrid formulas), do not use this term (use
> scientificName instead).
> Comment: Examples: "Carex" (genus), "Vulpes vulpes" (species),
> "Anaphalis margaritacea occidentalis" (plant variety)
> Refines:
> Has Domain:
> Has Range:
> Replaces:
> ABCD 2.06:
> --
> Peter Desmet
> Biodiversity Informatics Manager
> Canadensys - www.canadensys.net
> Université de Montréal Biodiversity Centre
> 4101 rue Sherbrooke est
> Montreal, QC, H1X2B2
> Canada
> Phone: 514-343-6111 #82354
> Fax: 514-343-2288
> Email: peter.desmet at umontreal.ca / peter.desmet.cubc at gmail.com
> Skype: anderhalv
> Public profile: http://www.linkedin.com/in/peterdesmet

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