How To Use The Key

This tool offers a Javascript-based interactive matrix key built using Lucid3 software. Lucid3 is software for creating and using interactive identification keys. Lucid is developed by Identic in Brisbane, Australia. Visit the Lucidcentral website for more information on Lucid and Lucid3.

Any modern web browser can be used, such as Internet Explorer, Firefox, Chrome, or Safari. Javascript must be enabled.

An interactive matrix-key is quite different from a traditional dichotomous key. The user is recommended to consult Lucid Best Practices on occasion to pick up new tips and tricks for using the interactive key.

Web pages such as fact sheets attached to items in Lucid3 keys may be considered pop-ups by certain browsers (such as Internet Explorer) when clicked on. If your browser blocks these pop-ups, you should allow pop-ups for this Lucid tool in your browser's Internet settings.

Screen Windows

A Lucid key has four panels.

  • The upper left window Features Available lists the identification features and feature states to choose from.
  • The upper right window Entities Remaining lists the available taxa.
  • The lower left window Features Chosen lists which feature states are currently selected.
  • The lower right window Entities Discarded lists the taxa that have been discarded based the features that have been selected.
  • Features Available

    In order to simplify use of the Symptoms key, Lucid’s positive dependency feature was used. First, users are presented only with a feature called "Section of palm tree affected". Once the user has chosen the appropriate part, features applicable to that part will appear in the Features Available panel. In this way, the user will not be distracted by features that do not apply to their particular specimen.

    Navigating the Key

    Feature and entity trees can be expanded by clicking the “+” next to the grouping feature or entity. Feature states are selected by clicking once in the checkbox next to the state name. Clicking the state a second time deselects the state. As feature states are selected, the entities that do not have those features will be moved into the Entities Discarded panel.

    Lucid screen shot

    Many of the feature states are illustrated with drawings and/or photographs. Clicking on the image thumbnail (or image icon if thumbnails are not displayed) brings up a larger size image and gives the user access to the full image gallery for the feature state or entity, if available. All entities are linked to HTML pages containing fact sheets for the entity. Clicking the small grey page icon next to the entity thumbnail will open the fact sheet in a new browser window.

    A glossary with links from the fact sheets is provided to assist the user in understanding palm anatomy terminology used in the key and fact sheets. A diagram of palm anatomy is also included on the glossary page.

    Multiple states of a feature may be selected. If unsure of the correct state, it is often better to try a different feature before selecting a state you are unsure about. For more hints on navigating the key, see the Best Practices page.

    Last updated May 2015