A methodology for composing well-defined character descriptions.

Paterson, Trevor, Cannon, Alan, Raguenaud, Cedric, Russell, Gordon, Armstrong, Kate E, MacDonald, Sarah M, Pullan, Martin R, Watson, Mark F and Kennedy, Jessie (2003) A methodology for composing well-defined character descriptions. Technical Report. Napier University, Edinburgh.

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    Taxonomy has been described as “the science of documenting biodiversity”, which involves collecting, naming, describing, identifying and classifying specimens of organisms (Keogh, 1995). Descriptions are the fundamental information units used in the process of constructing classifications and communicating taxonomic concepts. The quality of stored description data is limited by the lack of a formal model and methodology for composing specimen descriptions, and by the absence of an agreed defined terminology. This impedes the communication, interpretation and reuse of original descriptions. This paper describes a novel approach to composing and recording taxonomic descriptions of botanical specimens. An underlying model for creating character descriptions is presented together with a process for creating an ontology of defined terms, which will be used to compose these description elements. It is hoped that these developments will facilitate the unambiguous interpretation of descriptions and enhance the taxonomic process.

    Item Type: Monograph (Technical Report)
    Uncontrolled Keywords: Biology; Characterisation; Taxonomy; Description; Database; Computer Model; Ontology;
    University Divisions/Research Centres: Faculty of Engineering, Computing and Creative Industries > School of Computing
    Dewey Decimal Subjects: 000 Computer science, information & general works > 000 Computer science, knowledge & systems > 005 Computer programming, programs & data
    500 Science > 570 Life sciences; biology
    Library of Congress Subjects: Q Science > QH Natural history
    Q Science > QA Mathematics > QA76 Computer software
    Item ID: 3024
    Depositing User: Computing Research
    Date Deposited: 28 Oct 2009 12:48
    Last Modified: 20 Apr 2012 12:38

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