The most important subject area in the NMITA model is taxon, which contains: (a) taxonomic names and their authors, (b) the taxonomic hierarchy and synonyms used by NMITA contributors, and (c) morphologic characters that can be used to identify taxa. All taxonomic names in NMITA will adhere to the rules of the International Code of Zoological Nomenclature (Ride et al. 1995). Only published names will be allowed; all undescribed new species will be left in open nomenclature following Bengston 1988. All names will be linked via author/date information to literature citations. As in the ASC model, the taxonomic hierarchy will be implemented using a recursive relationship linking TaxonConcept to TaxonRelationship. Illustrations of this hierarchy (e.g., cladograms, trees) will be linked through TaxonConcept Illustration. A unique set of morphologic characters (or pick list) will be assigned to each taxonomic class, and a fixed set of states (with linked illustrations) will be assigned to each character. Characters and their states will be defined in illustrated morphologic glossaries for each taxonomic class. Character states will be entered for each species, and data on type species, type genera etc. will be used to determine states for higher taxa.