On March 29, 2009, we initiated an ambitious goal (informally dubbed the ‘5K Karacters Kuration Goal’) to curate over 5,000 characters for 3,500 species from 50 papers by June 15. The reason for this annotation push was the planned beta release of the Phenoscape Knowledgebase at the Joint Meeting of Ichthyologists and Herpetologists (22-27 July 2009) in Portland, Oregon. We formed a curator team including Jeff Engeman, Terry Grande, Eric Hilton, John Lundberg, and Paula Mabee, and we each took on a significant chunk (either 500 or 1000 characters) of the ichthyological literature. We annotated the characters to a ‘coarse level of granularity’ using a small set of 15 quality terms. These terms represent higher-level concepts to describe phenotypic variation, and allowed us to focus on adding new entities to the anatomy ontology, and to categorize phenotype variation into broad categories that will guide future annotation development efforts.
The ‘5 K Karacters Goal’ was much more ambitious that we realized, resulting in the addition of 205 terms to the Teleost Anatomy Ontology, and more to other ontologies (Phenotype and Trait Ontology, Spatial Ontology, Teleost Taxonomy Ontology). At the end of the curation drive, 4,174 out of 5,445 characters were curated. This resulted in 243,577 phenotypes (unique taxon-phenotype assertions) — now up to 333,987 phenotypes (see tally at kb.phenoscape.org).