Author Norman I. Platnick is Peter J. Solomon Family Curator Emeritus of Spiders at the American Museum of Natural History where he curates the world's largest collection of spiders. A Ph.D recipient from Harvard University, Platnick has described over 1,800 species of spiders, making him the second most prolific arachnologist in history. He originated the World Spider Catalog; a fully accessible database of the 45,000 species, a resource that is unmatched for any other group of organisms. Platnick is recognized as a world leader in spider taxonomy. Expert contributors include: Gustavo Hormiga, Professor of Biology at George Washington University; Peter Jager, Head of Arachnology at the Senckenberg Research Institute; Rudy Jocque, Head of Invertebrates at the Royal Museum for Central Africa; Martin J. Ramirez, CONICET; and Robert Raven, Senior Curator at Queensland Museum.