[CF-metadata] Proposed standard names for biological model outputs

Jonathan Gregory j.m.gregory at reading.ac.uk
Tue Dec 5 11:27:01 MST 2006

Dear Roy

> I can see a future request for 'Nitrogen_molar_biomass_of_phytoplankton' and nobody realising that it is the same thing as the pre-existing 'molar_concentration_of_nitrogen_in_sea_water_due_to_phytoplankton'.

This kind of thing is certainly a problem but I don't think we can avoid it.
When people approach things from different backgrounds they have different
expectations. We just have to point that the quantity exists under a different
name already. This has happened before.

Of course, we can minimise it by using familiar terms, and that is one reason
for doing so. However, I somewhat disagree with Steve's preference for the
technical terms of specialised fields, as often these terms are unclear and
confused - at least, I have got that impression from previous exercises to
devise new standard names. In their own fields they are jargon which is
understood, and the background is known, but to outsiders they can seem
unintuitive and unclear. Obviously this is not always the case. We have to
take each case on its merits.

Best wishes


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