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Initiatives reinventing taxonomy for the Internet generation are leading to a dramatic resurgence in this once declining discipline. Looking at the effort of several groups, especially the Global Bioinformation Diversity Facility, to catalog the world's biodiversity and make it accessible via databases, this work discusses the future of descriptive taxonomy.
The book covers such technology as DNA barcoding and its applications, computer-assisted species identification, digital morphology, and E-typification. It also provides insight into effective ways of organizing taxonomic information, and discusses what benefits can be leveraged from a rapid growth of taxonomic knowledge.
! this volume charts the efforts of several international groups to address the problems faced by contemporary taxonomists. In 10 essays covering techniques such as DNA barcoding, computer-aided identification, digital morphology, and E-typification, the book provides what the back cover describes as 'an unapologetic look at morphology and descriptive taxonomy ... [that] frames one of the most constructive responses to the biodiversity crisis.' This is a bold claim. But perhaps we should expect nothing less from the editor, who, amongst other things, is director of Arizona State University's International Institute for Species Exploration! . --Vincent S. Smith, Department of Entomology, The Natural History Museum, London, in Systematic Biology, Vol. 57
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