Community intelligence in knowledge curation: an application to managing scientific nomenclature.

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Lin Dai ; Chao Xu ; Ming Tian ; Jian Sang ; Dong Zou ; Ang Li ; Guocheng Liu ; Fei Chen ; Jiayan Wu ; Jingfa Xiao ; Xumin Wang ; Jun Yu ; Zhang Zhang
  • Publisher: Public Library of Science (PLoS)
  • Journal: PLoS ONE, volume 8, issue 2 (issn: 1932-6203, eissn: 1932-6203)
  • Related identifiers: doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0056961, pmc: PMC3581571
  • Subject: Computational Biology | Databases | Science and Technology Workforce | Social and Behavioral Sciences | Research Article | Biology | Information Technology | Science Education | Sociology | Medicine | Sociology of Knowledge | Genome Databases | Medical Communication | Q | Communications | R | Computer Science | Biological Data Management | Science | Genomics | Communication in Health Care | Science Policy | Information Science | Non-Clinical Medicine

Harnessing community intelligence in knowledge curation bears significant promise in dealing with communication and education in the flood of scientific knowledge. As knowledge is accumulated at ever-faster rates, scientific nomenclature, a particular kind of knowledge, is concurrently generated in all kinds of fields. Since nomenclature is a system of terms used to name things in a particular discipline, accurate translation of scientific nomenclature in different languages is of critical importance, not only for communications and collaborations with English-speaking people, but also for knowledge dissemination among people in the non-English-speaking world, particularly young students and researchers. However, it lacks of accuracy and standardization when translating scientific nomenclature from English to other languages, especially for those languages that do not belong to the same language family as English. To address this issue, here we propose for the first time the application of community intelligence in scientific nomenclature management, namely, harnessing collective intelligence for translation of scientific nomenclature from English to other languages. As community intelligence applied to knowledge curation is primarily aided by wiki and Chinese is the native language for about one-fifth of the world’s population, we put the proposed application into practice, by developing a wiki-based English-to-Chinese Scientific Nomenclature Dictionary (ESND; ESND is a wiki-based, publicly editable and open-content platform, exploiting the whole power of the scientific community in collectively and collaboratively managing scientific nomenclature. Based on community curation, ESND is capable of achieving accurate, standard, and comprehensive scientific nomenclature, demonstrating a valuable application of community intelligence in knowledge curation.
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