Re: the need for a glossary

Hi christine,

this topic is on the agenda for the next call ( tomorrow morning for me).
My own view is that a glossary can make a useful resource for all of us, but can also be highly distracting from the main game. ( although noting well that we do have some formal ontology deliverables, although many of the terms used in those have already been carefully selected and then entrenched and we should not change them without very good reasons) . I want to make sure we get the former benefit without the latter disbenefit.


On 24 Feb 2015, at 1:28 am, "Christine Perey" <<>> wrote:

Hi Frans and Kerry,

A useful glossary must be a shared endeavor and thanks for setting up a wiki page.

>From working on other glossaries I’ve observed that consistency is crucial and highly time consuming to achieve if everyone has their “fingers” on the one or a few terms about which they feel strongest.

It will take less time and produce far more useful results for a sub-group with representatives of each domain to come up with a strawman of a limited glossary with illustrations (and/or a mind map showing how they relate to one another) and to ask all others to comment than to have many authors proposing terms and simultaneously editing the entries.


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On Feb 23, 2015, at 11:13 AM, Frans Knibbe | Geodan <<>> wrote:

On 2015-02-20 16:43, Christine Perey wrote:
Hello all,

Thank you, Frans, for volunteering to do this important work which will benefit many people in the future.

In addition to clear (clearly written) definitions, consistency is very important.

Could the glossary development and maintenance have a few people (maybe form a task force of subject matter experts from the domains) who are responsible for all the editing?

Well, I proposed to start a wiki page that can serve as a glossary. I could fill it with a few terms, but after that I think it should be a shared endeavour, like the rest of the wiki. Especially with a subject like the definitions of core concepts it is important that many contribute and work towards something that is broadly supported.
But perhaps it is a good idea to have a few people feeling an extra amount of responsibility for ensuring things like consistency and completeness.



On Feb 20, 2015, at 12:55 AM, Thiago José Tavares Ávila <<>> wrote:


The glossary will optimize our time to align concepts and will enrich the documentation of our working group.

I agree with this proposal.


Em quinta-feira, 19 de fevereiro de 2015, Frans Knibbe | Geodan <<>> escreveu:
Hello everyone,

Following yesterdays teleconference, I think it would be a good idea to create a glossary page on the wiki, with concise definitions of the terms we use in communication. We operate in a confluence of two domains, so there is a risk of not fully understanding each other's jargon. Besides that, we want to be clear towards external interested people, who can have very different backgrounds.

What we certainly want to avoid is thinking that we are talking about the same thing when in fact we are not!

Two examples come to mind:

When discussing spatial information, I once was involved in a long and headache inducing discussion about whether a geographical name is a feature (a 'feature' is a very basic concept in the OGC world). It was rather hard to find the place in the OGC standards where the feature concept is defined, but still that did not resolve the issue.

Another discussion I took part in was taking place in the Linked Data domain. It involved a basic concept of the semantic web, the 'resource'. It was apparent that the concept is hard to grasp for some people, and that it is somewhat open to interpretation. Especially with the distinction between an 'information resource' and a 'non information resource', and a definition that has changed somewhat over time.

If we agree that having a glossary page is a good idea I would be happy to start one and put 'spatial feature' and 'spatial context' on it.

A side effect would be that we will have URLs for definitions that can be used on other web pages.


Frans Knibbe
President Kennedylaan 1
1079 MB Amsterdam (NL)

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Frans Knibbe
President Kennedylaan 1
1079 MB Amsterdam (NL)

T +31 (0)20 - 5711 347
E<><> | disclaimer<>

Received on Wednesday, 25 February 2015 11:45:50 UTC