Global Names Usage Bank (GNUB)

Edited on: 23 Sep 2015

GNUB, the Global Names Usage Bank, will be the core of GNA. GNUB will be the means by which we index and organize our recorded knowledge that we have about life on earth (well at least all of the recorded knowledge that is available on-line in a digital format).

A usage is a statement that includes a name. The usage might be a statement in a paper about the food of a brine shrimp, records of its occurrence, its presence on a web page, a digitized specimen label from a museum, or even field notes that refer to the organism. All such usages of all species in all documents make up humanity’s knowledge of the biosphere. GNUB is an environment that will have the capacity to index all such usages that are available on-line in a digital format.

GNUB connects names with their use. Through the uses that occur in nomenclators, we will know what the correct name is and how to present it. Through the uses in taxonomies, we will know what the synonyms are. Through all of the statements about what the organism does, where it lives, what it looks like and so on, we will be informed as to what the species is (the species concept/s). By indexing and grouping the index we will accelerate access to information.

As GNUB grows to an early beta form into a much larger structure, it will complement and eventually subsume other parts of the Global Names Architecture, such as the discovery and acquisition of names currently being pursued by GNI.

The role of GNUB as an index will be dwarfed by rich diversity of uses to which the information it indexes can be put. The Global Names team will build some of the functions that help to promote the Global Names Architecture, but by providing APIs, the information will be made available to other players to serve the needs of their clients. As the group assembling GNUB has very strong taxonomic influences, it is not surprising that lead figures include the Zoological and Fungal nomenclators ZooBank and Index Fungorum. As all nomenclatural acts to date require conventional publication, GNUB must interact with literature management environments such as the CiteBank environment being developed by the Biodiversity Heritage Library.

Zoobank is a specialist service that draws on GNUB.

Model components are shown below:

Core Components

[GNUB Core]

Taxon Name Usage (TNU) Cluster

[GNUB Tacon Name Usage]

References Cluster

[GNUB References]

Agents Cluster

[GNUB Agents]