Tables for
Volume G
Definition and exchange of crystallographic data
Edited by S. R. Hall and B. McMahon

International Tables for Crystallography (2006). Vol. G, ch. 3.1, p. 73

Section Authorship of data dictionaries

B. McMahona*

aInternational Union of Crystallography, 5 Abbey Square, Chester CH1 2HU, England
Correspondence e-mail: Authorship of data dictionaries

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A difficulty in developing a standard for information exchange across the field of crystallography is the breadth of the subject area and the many subdisciplines it includes. One feature of the construction of data dictionaries for CIF is the delegation of responsibility for identifying and defining the data items important within a research area to experts in that field. In consequence, a richer compilation of definitions results than would be possible from a single author or small group of authors. However, each subdiscipline will have its own emphases and requirements, and it becomes a challenge to accommodate the needs of each individual subdiscipline within the framework of the general body of definitions covering the entire subject area. COMCIFS deals with this challenge by initiating and ratifying dictionaries written by IUCr Commissions or other specialist groups.

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