Multi-access keys differ from the dichotomous keys traditionally provided in VicFlora by giving the user the flexibility to choose any of the characters provided rather than the user having to commit to investigate the particular features being questioned in the dichotomous keys. This has the benefit of:
avoiding having to answer questions relating to a feature that may not be present in the sample when being identified,
potentially being able to identify a taxon without needing to comprehend the most technical terminology and
allowing the rapid identification of taxa with distinct features rarely encountered in the family
To use the key the user selects a feature from the features in the top left Features Available panel and clicks on the state present in their specimen to be identified. Once selected this feature and state will show as being selected in the Features Chosen panel directly below the Features Available panel. To undo a selection, click on the box next to the state chosen in the Features Chosen panel to erase the tick in the box. Once a feature state is chosen all the taxa that do not possess the chosen feature state are discarded in the bottom right Entities Discarded panel and those that do possess the chosen feature state are retained in the top right Entities Remaining panel. The user continues to choose further character states present in their specimen until identification is achieved. To restart the key when finished select the restart key icon represented by the two green arrows in the top left corner of the screen.
We currently have the following multi-access keys available in VicFlora: