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FW: [Slovak-World] transcribing records

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  • frank.r.plichta@earthlink.net
    Julie, 1. I would recommend that you consider using MS-Access for your database instead of MS-Excel. Excel is a spreadsheet intended for math computations.
    Message 1 of 2 , Jan 23, 2007
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      Julie,



      1. I would recommend that you consider using MS-Access for your database
      instead of MS-Excel. Excel is a spreadsheet intended for math computations.
      All your effort will be limited in how you will ultimately be able to use
      the data. By using MA-Access you will have greater flexibility and will
      ultimately be able to use the data in a greater variety of ways in the
      future.



      2. When recording dates, I would recommend using the yyyy.mm.dd as a text
      format rather than the traditional dd/mm/yyyy or mm/dd/yyyy in date formats.
      You will still be able to sort by date but you will also be able to include
      dates that are incomplete. For example you may know the year and month but
      not the day so you can enter 2007.01.00 instead of 01/00/2007 which will
      not be accepted as a date in either Excel or Access. The entire effort here
      is to allow you to enter a date if only one or two of the elements are
      known.



      3. I would include an extra data field for "current location name". The
      location name you find in the records may be an old name by which the
      location was previously known many years ago when the event was recorded.
      That old location name will not be found on modern maps. The extra location
      data field will allow you to list both the old location as listed in the
      actual record as well as the modern day name. Some of those new names you
      will find right away whereas others may require additional research.
      Depending on what you find as regards the spelling of surnames and given
      names you might also choose to include an extra data element for the
      "corrected" data. Always record data that is perceived as wrong when you
      first see it. It might be a clue to something else in the future after you
      learn that it was not wrong but really was "new" data.



      4. I would create a data field for every piece of data contained in the
      records. Even if it is something that you do not think you will ever need.
      You might not need it today but 6 months down the road as you get more into
      the details you will wish you had included everything. You may also find
      that over time some data elements may be omitted in newer records while new
      data elements may be added.



      5. Always include a data field for "notes". Frequently you will find
      notations in the margin or that have been added to the record which are not
      usually recorded for all records. For example, I have frequently found
      notations for the date of death in the baptismal records. If you find the
      same kind of data on several records you might choose to include that as
      another data field. If not and the notes are of a variety of types of
      information then a single "notes" field will serve you well.



      Some of this may seem like extra work now but I can tell you from experience
      that you will wish you had taken the little extra time now for the benefits
      it will yield in the future. It will also eliminate the need to go back
      thru the records again to find the data element that you omitted the first
      time thru.



      Good Luck,

      Frank



      Frank R. Plichta

      Galax, Virginia





      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • gkocis
      I hadn t thought about yyyy/mm/dd format for incomplete dates. That is a good idea - I have had to set up a cumbersome protacal for dealing with incomplete
      Message 2 of 2 , Jan 27, 2007
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        I hadn't thought about yyyy/mm/dd format for incomplete dates. That
        is a good idea - I have had to set up a cumbersome protacal for
        dealing with incomplete dates.

        Thanks for the tip.




        --- In SLOVAK-ROOTS@yahoogroups.com, <frank.r.plichta@...> wrote:
        >
        > Julie,
        >
        >
        >
        > 1. I would recommend that you consider using MS-Access for your
        database
        > instead of MS-Excel. Excel is a spreadsheet intended for math
        computations.
        > All your effort will be limited in how you will ultimately be able
        to use
        > the data. By using MA-Access you will have greater flexibility and
        will
        > ultimately be able to use the data in a greater variety of ways in
        the
        > future.
        >
        >
        >
        > 2. When recording dates, I would recommend using the yyyy.mm.dd as
        a text
        > format rather than the traditional dd/mm/yyyy or mm/dd/yyyy in date
        formats.
        > You will still be able to sort by date but you will also be able to
        include
        > dates that are incomplete. For example you may know the year and
        month but
        > not the day so you can enter 2007.01.00 instead of 01/00/2007
        which will
        > not be accepted as a date in either Excel or Access. The entire
        effort here
        > is to allow you to enter a date if only one or two of the elements
        are
        > known.
        >
        >
        >
        > 3. I would include an extra data field for "current location
        name". The
        > location name you find in the records may be an old name by which
        the
        > location was previously known many years ago when the event was
        recorded.
        > That old location name will not be found on modern maps. The extra
        location
        > data field will allow you to list both the old location as listed
        in the
        > actual record as well as the modern day name. Some of those new
        names you
        > will find right away whereas others may require additional research.
        > Depending on what you find as regards the spelling of surnames and
        given
        > names you might also choose to include an extra data element for the
        > "corrected" data. Always record data that is perceived as wrong
        when you
        > first see it. It might be a clue to something else in the future
        after you
        > learn that it was not wrong but really was "new" data.
        >
        >
        >
        > 4. I would create a data field for every piece of data contained
        in the
        > records. Even if it is something that you do not think you will
        ever need.
        > You might not need it today but 6 months down the road as you get
        more into
        > the details you will wish you had included everything. You may
        also find
        > that over time some data elements may be omitted in newer records
        while new
        > data elements may be added.
        >
        >
        >
        > 5. Always include a data field for "notes". Frequently you will
        find
        > notations in the margin or that have been added to the record which
        are not
        > usually recorded for all records. For example, I have frequently
        found
        > notations for the date of death in the baptismal records. If you
        find the
        > same kind of data on several records you might choose to include
        that as
        > another data field. If not and the notes are of a variety of types
        of
        > information then a single "notes" field will serve you well.
        >
        >
        >
        > Some of this may seem like extra work now but I can tell you from
        experience
        > that you will wish you had taken the little extra time now for the
        benefits
        > it will yield in the future. It will also eliminate the need to go
        back
        > thru the records again to find the data element that you omitted
        the first
        > time thru.
        >
        >
        >
        > Good Luck,
        >
        > Frank
        >
        >
        >
        > Frank R. Plichta
        >
        > Galax, Virginia
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        > [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
        >
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