HISCOM teleconference minutes 2012-05-17

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Aaron Wilton (CHR) – Chair
Jim Croft (CANB)
Alison Vaughan (MEL)
Gary Chapple (NSW)
Wayne Cherry (NSW)
Helen Thompson (ABRS)
Donna Lewis (DNA)
Niels Klazenga (MEL)
Peter Bostock (BRI)
Ben Richardson (PERTH) (contributions via email/google docs)


Philip Edgar (WELT); Greg Whitbread (CANB);

Actions from last teleconference

  • Keep working on a solution for the HISCOM Wiki (Ben and Greg) [Status: In progress]
    • Ben is working on this, hopes to have resolved very soon.
  • Review the AVH hub when the next release is available and suggest changes to style etc (All) [Status: Complete]
  • Read the draft document [on Verification and annotation] and inform Laurence of any omissions in functional requirement (All) [Status: incomplete]
    • ACTION: Review document and provide feedback (ALL)
  • Review the documents [on GUID implementation] and add any comments or questions (ALL)[Status: incomplete]
    • ACTION: Review document and add comments or questions (ALL)
  • Follow up status of data license with David (Aaron) [Status: Complete]


  • recommendation for roll over has been approved by CHAH, pending update of the static content. We are in the process of updating the static content, the help and data pages have taken considerable amount of effort from Alison and Niels. As soon as the static content has been approved we will switch over to AVH4. This should occur early next week
  • data is current to c. August 2011. Niels plans for another update soon after the switch over.
  • A question of how we feed feature changes through in future for AVH was raised but not discussed.

[Subsequent to meeting I (Aaron) discussed the use of User voice with Dave Martin - he recommends continuing to use it in the initial period following switch over, and then relying solely on email as a feedback mechanism.

The webmaster@chah.gov.au email account currently sends to Greg Whitbread. Greg recommends that we add additional people to this list.

  • HISCOM noted with thanks the excellent product that has been developed by ALA
  • Launch of the AVH
    • probably mid August, may coincide with a technical workshop or other events.
    • joint launch with OZCAM is likely
  • AVH classification
    There are currently inconsistencies in the higher-level classification, because of different classifications that are used for names that are in APA and names that are not. Jim Croft reports that Meredith from the APNI team is working on a higher-level classification for all taxa in AVH that will be included in the NSL. This will remedy the issue.
  • Technical engagement with ALA
    • summary of two briefing papers written for the ALA Management committee provided. These outline
      • work priorities for ALA team during 2012-13
      • request for technical resources from CHAH and CHAFC
    • these papers will be considered by CHAH next week, and CHAH may need to seek urgent feedback from HISCOM members.
    • HISCOM noted that CHAH should consider whether mobilisation of university herbarium data form part of the contribution to ALA.

Recommendation: CHAH to consider whether mobilisation of university herbarium data form part of the contribution to ALA for 2012/13.

Reports from GBIF node (Beth Mantle) and TDWG (Paul Flemons) Oceania representatives

  • Endorsement of reports being a standing item on the HISCOM agenda
  • In his report Paul requested HISCOM to make a statement applicability of TDWG meeting in China, however HISCOM do not consider this to be appropriate/within TOR.
  • Aaron and Greg may possibly attend TDWG this year
  • Discussed item 3 in GBIF report on improved communication between Node Manager, Head of Delegation and informatics community
    • HISCOM endorsed this endeavour, and inclusion of reports in agenda a starting point. However, it was noted that the GBIF and TDWG representatives should be seeking input from bodies such as CHAH prior to representing the region.

Recommendation: CHAH to seek clarification of communication processes with GBIF and TDWG representatives to ensure transparent communication.

Communication with CHAH

The paper from Kevin was discussed. HISCOM (with only one strongly dissenting voice) agreed that the approach “seemed reasonable” and “worth giving a go”. There were no suggestions for changes at this time.

Report from FCIG

Aaron provided a brief summary of key points from the draft FCIG minutes, including:

  • option for the local HISCOM rep to attend FCIG meetings if they are available
  • Robert Morris new chair of FCIG
  • FCIG developing role descriptions for ex-officio roles

Data delivery

Niels has made two Wiki pages, Data delivery to ALA and AVH data providers, that document data delivery to ALA. The first one documents the concepts that are delivered to ALA, the second one the concepts that are delivered by the herbaria (the ones that deliver dynamically). The nice new front end exposes some of the issues with the AVH data and there are some areas where we could do better. Some suggestions (well, they were suggestions three months ago) are already made in the Wiki page. The daily data delivery should be happening in the next couple of weeks. After that we will look into improving data quality and in finding solutions for herbaria that can’t currently deliver dynamically.

It was noted that HO has still not provided Niels with access to their data provider.

ACTION: Develop a work plan for data delivery changes for circulation to HISCOM (Niels, Aaron).

ACTION: Advise CHAH that HO are still to provide access to their data provider (Aaron).

[Noted after teleconference: Data delivery to GBIF was not discussed, but should be addressed prior to the AGM]

Preparation for next AGM

  • Date of AGM - recommended to avoid the two options in October. Particularly the week of 21–28th Oct.
  • Agreed to have another teleconference in a few months to start preparation for next AGM.
  • Agreed to set up wiki page to start listing topics for the AGM. [Done: see HISCOM AGM 2012 Canberra].
    Agenda items noted in the teleconference were:
    • Standards work: changes for HISPID
    • Mobilisation of data from university herbaria