ABCD Schema - Task Group on
Access to Biological Collection Data

A joint CODATA and TDWG initiative supported by GBIF

Content definition: the ABCD Schema

Request for Comment (Nov. 7, 2002)

Dear Colleague,

The Access to Biological Collections Data (ABCD) Task Group is developing an XML Schema as a data interchange standard for unit-level data. A unit may be a specimen, culture, living organism or observation of an organism. 

The standard, intended for use in distributed query systems for unit-level databases, has reached a degree of development where the Group welcomes comments and suggestions from the wider community. The current draft of the profile, labelled CTB version 1.39, can be found at the schema subgroup's Web-site at: along with further information about the project and the group itself. The profile is available as a .xsd file or as a very large HTML file with diagrams to show the structure. I may also be viewed through a special browser-based schema viewer.

The Schema is intended to provide a comprehensive basic structure and is consequently quite large and highly structured. It will be used as the standard format in which the results of a distributed query will be returned. 

The Group seeks comments on the adequacy of the element set and the definition of the element's semantics ("documentation"). We would particularly value comments on where the element count may be reduced, rather than enlarged, without impairing its function.

Please would you take a look at the current draft, and send comments and suggestions to by the December 3, 2002.

For the ABCD Standard Editors Group

J. Croft, N. Thomson, and W. Berendsohn

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