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A Computer System for Editing Diagnostic Keys for Flora North America

Larry E. Morse, John H. Beaman and Stanwyn G. Shetler
Taxon
Vol. 17, No. 5 (Oct., 1968), pp. 479-483
DOI: 10.2307/1216042
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/1216042
Page Count: 5
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A Computer System for Editing Diagnostic Keys for Flora North America
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Abstract

Computer programs are being developed and tested for editing dichotomous keys, particularly to meet the challenges offered by the Flora North America Project. An elementary editing system is available for revising previously prepared keys; the new versions are then printed in conventional indented form. An advanced editing system currently being tested improves the efficiency of the process and offers a choice of output formats. For this latter approach the data are stored in three files: a taxon list, a descriptor list, and a numeric representation of the key. A variety of editing procedures are possible, including additions and deletions of taxa, changes in descriptors, and even translation of the key from one language to another. The system is designed for compatibility with the first author's experimental programs for constructing keys and making direct identifications.

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