Glossary

ABCD (Access to Biological Collections Data): a task group in the Observation and Specimen Records interest group (as well as a CODATA task group).

ABCD schema: a comprehensive set of data type definitions developed to support the sharing and integration of "primary biodiversity data"; i.e. data about the occurence of organisms in nature or in scientific collections (observation and specimen records).

BioCASE (Biological Collection Access Service for Europe): an international network of biological collections offering unified access to distributed and heterogeneous European collection and observational databases.

BioCASe: an XML protocol and software package developed by the BioCASE project to facilitate the sharing of data among providers. 

Biodiversity Information Standards (TDWG): a new name for TDWG.

Biological Descriptions (formerly Structured Descriptive Data - SDD): a TDWG Interest Group developing a standard computer-based mechanisms for expressing and transferring descriptive information about biological specimens, taxa, and similar entities such as diseases or ecosystems.

Blog: a website or online environment reserved for posting comments on a designated topic. Unlike a wiki, a blog presents every participant's personality and opinion as opposed to encouraging consensus. 

Charter: a formal document required for all TDWG groups that describes their remit and core membership.

Compliance Testing: testing to determine whether a system meets some specified standard.

Concept: definition of property, class or relationship (e.g. taxon concept).
 
Consensus: implies an agreed collective opinion even though variations of opinion are present. Consensus rather than voting is TDWG's method for standards development. Conveners must therefore have a thorough understanding of consensus and how to achieve it (link to consensus document).

Copyright: exclusive rights to copy, publish, sell or distribute a literary, musical or artistic work.

Darwin Core: a simple set of data type definitions developed to support the sharing and integration of "primary biodiversity data" (e.g. data about the occurrence of organisms in nature or in scientific collections).

DiGIR (Distributed Generic Information Retrieval): a common software architecture to support distributed queries across collection databases. 

Draft Standard: a TDWG standard that is submitted for review.

GBIF (Global Biodiversity Information Facility): an international organization funded by 26 voting participants (national governments) working to make all biodiversity data accessible globally. 

GIG (Geospatial Interest Group): TDWG interest group that examines geospatial standards and to makes recommendations for their use in biological information systems. The GIG is also in a position to advise geospatial standards groups on bioinformatics.

Governance: How something is governed or managed. In TDWG theExecutive Committee holds the responsibility of leading and managing TDWG. Conveners hold management responsibilities for Interest Groups and their Task Groups. 

GUID (Global Unique Identifier): any system that provides mechanisms to identify and access data objects on the Web (i.e. LSID, DOI, Handles).

GUID (Global Unique Identifiers Group): TDWG interest group formed to standardize the use of globally unique identifiers within the Biodiversity Informatics community. 

HISPID3 (Herbarium Information Standards and Protocols for Interchange of Data): a standard format for the exchange of electronic herbarium specimen information.

HTML: Hypertext Markup Language. a subset of Standard Generalized Markup Language (SGML), used for authoring pages for the World Wide Web.

IAPT (International Association for Plant Taxonomy): an association founded in 1950 to implement projects of interest and concerns to systematic biologists. Current work includes the extent, recognition, organization, evolution, and naming of plants and fungi, both living and fossil.

IIG (Image Interest Group): TWDG interest group.

Intellectual Property (IP): a term describing legal entitlements to certain types of information, ideas or other intangibles.

IPR (Intellectual Property Rights): intellectually property entitlements that either grant exclusive rights on exact replications of an item or copyright OR grant rights preventing others from producing the same design.

Interest Group: A TDWG group that discusses problems, goals, strategies, methods and applications of technologies related to the biodiversity information exchange. Interest Groups are the only entity in TDWG that can form a Task Group.

ISIS (Invasive Species Information Systems): TDWG interest group.

IUBS (International Union for Biological Sciences): a non-governmental, non-profit organization established to promote the study of biological sciences by prioritizing international and interdisciplinary cooperation.

LSID (Life Science Identifier): is a globally unique and persistent identifier system created to overcome current limitations of naming schemes. An LSID names and identifies data resources stored in multiple, distributed data stores.(LSIDs for Managers, LSIDs for Biologists)

Mail List (TDWG): a collection of names and email addresses used by TDWG to send material to multiple recipients.

NCD (Natural Collections Description Group): a TDWG Interest Group .

OAI (Open Archives Initiative): a group formed to enable free and open access to Web-available material through interoperable libraries for metadata sharing, publishing and archiving.

OAI-PMH (Open Archives Initiative Protocol for Metadata Harvesting): an application-independent interoperability protocol for sharing metadata between services. 

Observation Data: data concerning the measurement of occurrences or absences of organisms at a certain place and time. The act of measurement implies that a methodology (known or unknown) has been followed and this methodology may include the collection of specimens.

OGC (Open Geospatial Consortium): an international group of companies, government agencies and universities and individuals working to develop interoperable solutions that "geo-enable" the Web, wireless and location-based services, and mainstream IT. 

Ontology:  a catalog of items to order logic descriptions of business or scientific processes.

OWL (Web Ontology Language Reference): a semantic markup language, extending RDF, for publishing and sharing ontologies on the Web (see RDF).

Proceedings of TDWG: the annual publication of all abstracts from presentations at annual TDWG conferences (uses OJS).

Protocol: an agreed format for transmitting data between two or more devices.

RDF (Resource Description Framework): is a general-purpose language for representing and exchanging information on the Internet. Specifically, RDF offers a platform for biologists to combine heterogeneous data from distributed data sources, add value to that data, and then publish it back to the community.

RDFS (RDF Schema): RDF’s vocabulary description language used to provide mechanisms for describing groups of related resources and the relationships between these resources.

Review Manager: the person responsible for managing the review of a proposed TDWG standard or charter.

RFC (Request for Comment): a series of documents outlining new research, innovations, and methodologies applicable to an Internet technology. 

Sandbox: a web environment used for raising ideas or for testing protocols, software or processes.

Schema Repository: an area of the TDWG on-line collaboration environment set aside for subgroups to store documents that are accessed (frequently) by software (e.g. RDF schemas, XML schemas).

SOAP (Simple Object Access Protocol): an XML-based messaging protocol used for invoking web services and exchanging structured data. 

SPM: The Species Profile Model is a specification of data concepts and structure intended to support the retrieval and integration of data that documents species, e.g., facts about biology, ecology, evolution, behaviour, etc.

Specimen Data: data about a natural history specimen (e.g. location, collector, date, surrounding vegetation, etc). (see observation data)

Standards Repository: a TDWG repository for managing documents through the ratification process.

Technical ArchitectureTAG (Technical Architecture Group): a TDWG Interest Group to maintain a common development architecture for TDWG, and to provide advice to the Executive Committee, Conveners and members about technical issues.

TAPIR (TWDG Access Protocol for Information Retrieval): a standard that combines and extends the features of the BioCASe (see BioCASe) and DiGIR (see DiGIR) protocols to create a new and more generic way to communicate between client applications and data providers via the internet. 

Task Group: a TDWG group formed by an Interest Group to develop a specific product within a specific time frame. 

Taxon Concept: A taxon name AND description required to differentiate it from other instances that may fall under the same taxon name.

TCS (Taxon Concept Schema): a structured exchange data model for nomenclatural and taxonomic data (see Taxon Concept).

TDWG (Taxonomic Database Working Group): a non-profit, scientific and educational association formed to develop international standards and protocols for sharing biodiversity information.. TDWG is now referred to as ‘Biodiversity Information Standards (TDWG).

TDWG Secretariat:  a group of five positions to assist the TDWG Executive Committee (Journal Editor, Web Editor, Annual Conference Manager, Outreach ‘Champion’, Secretary, Secretarial Assistant)

Template: a TDWG document providing a structural outline of requirements, e.g. for charters and reports.

TIP (TDWG Infrastructure Project): The Gordon & Betty Moore Foundation funded project to modernize TDWG’s development of protocols and standards.

TNC (Taxonomic Names and Concept Group): a TDWG interest group that promotes the understanding of taxonomic names and their relation to described taxon concepts. The group focuses on the development and use of standard data models for representing taxon names and concepts (see Taxon Concept) and how these standards relate to other biodiversity information models.

Triple Store: a database for storing RDF  based data (see RDF).

Typo3: The content management system used to manage TDWG website content.

UBIF (Unified Biosciences Information Framework): an XML schema for biological data exchange and integration across networks. Specifically, this schema tried to define a common foundation for several TDWG/GBIF standards like SDD, ABCD or TaxonConceptNames 

URL (Uniform Resource Locator): the address of a resource on the Internet.

W3C (World Wide Web Consortium): an international association where member organizations, a full-time staff, and the public work together to develop protocols and guidelines that ensure long-term Web growth.

Wiki: a website that allows end users to easily add, remove, and edit some available content. In TDWG, the wiki is used to collaboratively develop documents and foster discussion for subgroups.

XDF: an early attempt to define a language for the definition and exchange of specimen records, that was accepted as a TDWG standard in 19**.

XHTML (Extensible HyperText Markup Language): a language for content that is accepted by XML and HTML. This format is used by TDWG for formal documentation specifications.

XML (extensible markup language): a method for exchanging information across information systems and the internet.

 


  Last Modified: 02 March 2008