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Weekly reading: Nature of cladistic data

By popular demand, the Spring 2014 weekly lab discussion series will focus on the theory and practice of coding cladistic characters, and where and why this remains an essential task of systematics. This is a broad theme that has been treated by many authors and from different perspectives. We will start with a paper that is rife with issues that merit a more nuanced discussion; but at the same time reflects a suite of topics and positions advocated in the mid t0 late 1980s when the 1st- to 2nd-generation cladistic software packages (such as Hennig86) were in use.

Pimentel, R.A. & R. Riggins. 1987. The nature of cladistic data. Cladistics 3: 201-209. Available on-line here.

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