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The 900000000000456007 |reference set descriptor reference set|  is a reference set used to specify the format of all reference sets included in a release. The data type and meaning of the referenced component and each additional field within each reference set is described by this reference set. More specifically, the reference set descriptor is used to define:

  1. The order of appearance of additional attributes (other than those mandatory for all reference sets). The AttributeOrder attribute
  2. The name and purpose of the additional attributes. The attributeDescription attribute
  3. The data types for the additional attributes. The attributeType attribute

The table below shows an excerpt from the Reference Set Descriptor, to illustrate how the attributes of the predefined reference set types are specified consistently.

Table 4.1.1-1: Sample of the | reference set descriptor reference set (foundation metadata concept) | (human-readable view with some attributes omitted for brevity)

...referencedComponentIdreferencedComponentId_termattributeDescriptionattributeDescription_termattributeTypeattributeType_termattributeOrder
 446609009Simple type reference set449608002Referenced component900000000000461000Concept type component0
 447258008Ordered type reference set449608002Referenced component900000000000460000Component type0
 447258008Ordered type reference set447255006Priority order reference set attribute900000000000478000Unsigned integer1
 447258008Ordered type reference set447257003"Linked to" reference set attribute900000000000460000Component type2
 900000000000480006Attribute value type449608002Referenced component900000000000460000Component type0
 900000000000480006Attribute value type900000000000491004Attribute value900000000000461000Concept type component1
 900000000000496009Simple map900000000000500006Map source concept900000000000461000Concept type component0
 900000000000496009Simple map900000000000499002Scheme value900000000000465000String1
 900000000000506000Language type900000000000510002Description in dialect900000000000462000Description type component0
 900000000000506000Language type900000000000511003Acceptability900000000000461000Concept type component1
 900000000000512005Query specification type reference set900000000000514006Generated reference set900000000000461000Concept type component0
 900000000000512005Query specification type reference set900000000000515007Query900000000000465000String1
 900000000000516008Annotation type900000000000518009Annotated component900000000000461000Concept type component0
 900000000000516008Annotation type900000000000519001Annotation900000000000465000String1
 900000000000521006Association type900000000000532006Association source component900000000000460000Component type0
 900000000000521006Association type900000000000533001Association target component900000000000460000Component type1

Specializing a Descriptor Template

When a new reference set is created in an extension, it must (by default) conform to the reference set descriptors of its closest supertype (if one exists). Creation of a description template for a new reference set is optional in an extension, if the reference set has a supertype which itself has a descriptor template.

However, it is possible for a reference set to specialize the descriptor template of its supertype, by creating a copy and replacing the 900000000000458008 |Attribute description|or 900000000000459000 |Attribute type|values with a subtype.

For example, if a reference set has a descriptor, in which the 900000000000458008 |Attribute description|= 449608002 |Referenced component|and the 900000000000459000 |Attribute type|= 900000000000460005 |Component type|, then the reference set's subtype may replace this descriptor with one in which the 900000000000458008 |Attribute description|= 900000000000460005 |Component type|and the 900000000000459000 |Attribute type|= 900000000000461009 |Concept type component|(since 900000000000461009 |Concept type component|is a subtype of 900000000000460005 |Component type|). In this way, the reference set descriptors may be specialized for use by the subtypes of the reference set.


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