IPNI The International Plant Names Index

Progress in standardization

We are currently working intensively on improving the quality of the data with an emphasis on standardizing publication titles and the format of the collation, and adding publication dates (precise where possible) where they are missing. These areas of standardization were particularly difficult for the editors to deal with efficiently in the past due to inherent problems in the data. However, we have been fortunate to obtain funding to employ a dedicated programmer for one year (until Jan 07) to help with this task and to develop a suite of tools to enable the editors to work with the data more efficiently and effectively.

The data has required a considerable amount of cleaning prior to going through the standardization process. The cleaned data may subsequently undergo any combination of the following processes:

• converting roman numeral volume numbers
• converting roman numeral part numbers and formatting correctly
• extracting or copying the date from the collation field to the publication year field
• reformatting the collation
• adding publication dates where missing
• checking for errors, scanning and typographical
• correcting the title to the standard form appropriate for volume number or year of publication

Cleaning is still underway, but we have now been able to work on improving several large datasets. All records from Feddes Repert. and associated titles for instance, now bear the correct title per volume number, and the collations are displayed in a uniform manner and all records are dated.

As a by-product of the processing that the data undergoes we have been able to detect and correct a large number of errors.

See charts showing how we are getting on.

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