[permaculture] Re: PCPlantDB mailing lists

Richard Morris webmaster at pfaf.org
Mon Oct 7 09:24:34 EDT 2002

permaculture-request at lists.ibiblio.org wrote:
> Send permaculture mailing list submissions to
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> From: "Lawrence F. London, Jr." <lfl at intrex.net>
> Subject: [permaculture] PCPlantDB mailing lists, lists for the online permaculture plant
>  database project & other little-used lists - should we keep them?
> Reply-To: permaculture at lists.ibiblio.org
> PCPlantDB mailing lists, lists for the online permaculture plant database project - should we keep them?
> -
> I hate to say use them or lose them but do we need to revive this project? will it go anywhere?
> will the Open Permaculture Project's Permaculture Wiki replace this project?
> I hate to keep lists around if they aren't being used. Can we arrive at a consensus about this?
> I can, of course just leave them where they are in case they are needed at some future time.
> The list names are:
> ppcplantdb
> http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/pcplantdb
> pcplantdb-data
> http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/pcplantdb-data
> pcplantdb-tech
> http://lists.ibiblio.org/mailman/listinfo/pcplantdb-tech

Yep, I would like to keep the mailing list up and running.
Don't know if the project is sufficiently far advanced to 
warrant the two sub lists (-tech and -data).

In my mind the project is still going its just taken a long time
for me to find time to do work on it.

I managed to find some time in june to do a bit of work on the
database, and almost got a working framework running on my home
PC. I was racing against the clock to get a first draft version
up and running so it was in a fit state for other to look at.
Unfortunately time ran out, and I've been waiting for another time
to appear to continue the work.

I've posted a message to the pcplantdb with the readme for the
first draft, which explains what I've been thinking of so far.

Basically what I've done to know is develop a framework for
the database. Important components
	1) Recording info on authors and contributors
		(essential to find out who contributed what)
	2) Documentation features. Self documenting features
		similar to javadoc so that everything 
		(eg table definitions) is well documented.
		Includes a glossary feature.
	3) An extensible framework which can allow authors
		to add their own tables of information, or
		fields to existing tables.
	4) Referencing and bibliographic information.
	5) Mechanism for linking with other datasets.

What I've not done is any spec for that actual data to be recorded
about any particular plant. I feel that this is really for
the discussion of the group rather something to be imposed. Hence
I've concentrated on what might be the core underlying framework
which allows others to really develop the data structure.

We've also been in discussion in PFAF about our licensing policy
and every one seems to like the two path development, where
we have one path completely open source (with some restrictions
on selling our data) which would be the pcplantdb, the other path is
a commercial product (with pictures added) to raise some money
for our project. Upshot of this is its looking more likely for
a basic dataset to get pcplantdb up and running.

Unfortunately, I have not had time to get the basic framework running
on the metalab machines so you can't yet see what I've done so far.
I'll have another stab at getting the working system up and running 
in the next couple of days. Very very draft, be warned.

	Sorry for not letting people know what's been going on sooner.


Plants for a Future: 7000 useful plants
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