GENBOX-L ArchivesArchiver > GENBOX > 2003-08 > 1061550318
From: "William T. Flight" <>
Subject: Re: [GENBOX] Please raise SOURCE levels to 4
Date: Fri, 22 Aug 2003 07:05:22 -0400
The problem with making sources into more than two levels is the increasing
complexity of the templates.
When designing the source system, I originally tried to go for an
"unlimited" number of source levels, which seemed ideal. Every source could
link to a higher source. The template codes would all refer to the
current-level source and have names like [TITLE], [AUTHOR], [PLACE], [DATE],
[QUALIFIER], [SUBJECT], etc. To include the formatting for the higher source
(and its higher source(s), if any), there would be a special template code
But this design failed to work when I tried to apply it to standard source
citations. The problem is that source citation formats are not
"level-contained". To format the lower source, you need to be able to refer
to specific pieces of the higher source.
Another problem is that a higher source could be used either directly or as
the higher source. When used directly, its formatting is different than when
used as a higher source, so it would need its own formatting defined plus
its "inheritable" formatting.
Instead, Genbox has pairs of similar codes that refer to each level, like
[DOC TITLE] and [SOURCE TITLE], [DOC AUTHOR] and [SOURCE AUTHOR], etc.
Following the concept of a "document" being within a larger "source", the
lower level is called the Document Level, and the level above is called the
Source Level. With these codes, the lower document can refer to specific
pieces of the higher source, for great control over the formatting. The
source also has its own templates which are used only when the source is
Now, suppose we extend this "level-specific" design approach to three
levels. We will still need to refer to each level's pieces individually in
the lower levels, so we'll need a name for the new level. I can't think of a
good generic division, so we'll call it the "Middle" level for purposes of
this discussion. The new level will appear between the document and source
levels, and have template codes like [MID TITLE], [MID AUTHOR], [MID PLACE],
Already, we have increased the number of template codes by a third.
Currently when you go to define a source template, you can specify whether
this is going to be "Document", "Doc in Source", or "Source". But now we
would need to specify whether this was going to be a "Document", "Doc in
Source", "Doc in Middle", "Doc in Middle in Source", "Middle", "Middle in
Source", or "Source". Then when the template is actually used, what happens
if, say, a "Doc in Middle in Source" template is selected, but the linked
higher source is actually a Doc or Source, or a Middle missing a link to a
higher source? Or if a "Middle" source is linked to directly? Should you
design the template to handle missing higher level sources with conditional
portions? Should sources have three sets of formats defined, one for when
used directly with no higher source, one when used as a middle, and one when
used as the "grandfather" source?
At this point, I think the complexity of going beyond two source levels
outweighs the usefulness of such a system. I'm open to suggestions on how to
solve the complexity issue if anyone wants to tackle this one.
William T. Flight
----- Original Message -----
Sent: Friday, August 22, 2003 5:31 AM
Subject: [GENBOX] Please raise SOURCE levels to 4
> Hi Bill,
> I never had your comments on this one - is that possible?
> Hi Cheri
> Thanks for your advice, but I don't believe, that it give the expected
> overview as the first thing, next it will not give the 4 levels, that I
> The of using Places - THAT IS ONE of the most great things in GB - and I
> just want everything like that - SOURCES too!!
> Bill - I still have a hope!
|Re: [GENBOX] Please raise SOURCE levels to 4 by "William T. Flight" <>|