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Slovak Surname Database [S-R] Re: Member Village Index

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  • Frank R Plichta
    Helene, What form are the 4,000 new records? Are they in a similar file to the file published on your web site? If they are, then I don t care how they are
    Message 1 of 106 , Feb 5, 2010
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      What form are the 4,000 new records? Are they in a similar file to the file
      published on your web site? If they are, then I don't care how they are
      sorted. Just email me the file and I will merge it with the file I created
      from your web site. That only takes 5 minuets.

      The big job is making sure the data fields are consistent and that I don't
      create an error, by assuming too much, based on how the data are

      I think Helene is traveling out of town today, so it might be a while before
      she sees this message and can reply.

      In order to include the various village names for different dates in history
      I used Milan Majta'n's book, "Na'zvy Obci' Slovenskej Republiky" (Vy'vin v
      rokoch 1773-1997) published by Slovenskej akade'mie vied, Bratislava 1998.
      This source has the village names during the recent history that most of us
      are interested in between 1773 and 1927.

      I do have one conceptual problem and that is for those villages where two or
      three villages merged to form one village today. There would be two or
      three village names for each of the time periods. The time periods used
      most frequently are 1773, 1786, 1808, 1863-1873, 1877-1913, 1920 and 1927.



      From: SLOVAK-ROOTS@yahoogroups.com [mailto:SLOVAK-ROOTS@yahoogroups.com] On
      Behalf Of Bill Tarkulich
      Sent: Friday, February 05, 2010 5:55 AM
      To: SLOVAK-ROOTS@yahoogroups.com
      Subject: Re: [S-R] Re: Member Village Index

      Hi Helene, seems like frank is the man for. The job! Perhaps he
      would be willing to merge in your new entries and help you republish
      the list. Maybe he would. Be willing to clean it up a bit first to
      make it easier to search. My time. Is very limited right now, perhaps
      frank would be willing to take it to the next level.

      Sent from my iTouch

      On Feb 5, 2010, at 5:36 AM, helene cincebeaux <helenezx@yahoo.
      <mailto:helenezx%40yahoo.com> com>

      > ok - but you don't have some 4,000 + new entries as i said i hadn't
      > fpound anyonte to help me get current on line listings updated.
      > try the experiment and will see what you come up with
      > there was the problem of keeping the lines short when i published to
      > save space - the Slovak Pride book i published in september has
      > every single listing but not the name of the lister - again to save
      > space .
      > helene
      > ________________________________
      > From: Frank R Plichta <frank.r.plichta@
      <mailto:frank.r.plichta%40earthlink.net> earthlink.net>
      > To: SLOVAK-ROOTS@ <mailto:SLOVAK-ROOTS%40yahoogroups.com> yahoogroups.com
      > Sent: Thu, February 4, 2010 11:39:48 PM
      > Subject: RE: [S-R] Re: Member Village Index
      > Thanks for the advice Bill.
      > Helene,
      > Do you mind if I try an experiment as I have suggested? Actually I
      > already
      > started because I thought the earlier discussion from Helene
      > suggested that
      > someone else would have to take this on.
      > So far it took me 32 minutes to download each of the six sections of
      > the
      > alphabetical databases and merge them into a single database file.
      > Each
      > section had the following number of records:
      > A-D = 4,609 records
      > E-H = 3,841 records
      > I-L = 5,166 records
      > M-P = 4,915 records

      [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
    • pstupak
      Dear Frank, Michael, David, et al.: Thank you for your comments! I should probably mention a little bit about m background. Like the broad multitudes of
      Message 106 of 106 , Feb 11, 2010
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        Dear Frank, Michael, David, et al.:

        Thank you for your comments! I should probably mention a little bit about m background. Like the broad multitudes of people doing genealogical research, I am both new to it and have yet to cross over to non-web sources (although a LDS trip is in my near future). I came to it predominantly because my grandfather had a falling out with his family and refused to speak of any of them in his lifetime. Similarly, my wife's great-grandfather dropped his surname in favor of the generic "Nelson" after arriving in the States. So we're both interested in trying to figure out where we come from. I think this is fairly common for most novices, so I hope I can offer that prospective as we talk about designing a database useful to a wide range of people.

        Speaking of the database, not to toot my own horn, but I am something of an amateur Excel ninja as that falls in with my other hobbies of fantasy baseball and political campaigns. So I think I can also offer some perspective on the mechanics of designing an offline databases. Unfortunately, my knowledge of online databases, coding, and general web forms is limited to Google docs, and even for these I lack a thorough knowledge base.

        Regarding the surname accents, I can see where this may not be useful. My thinking was that as a novice I often see Stupaks, Sztupaks, Stupakovas, and half a dozen other versions with various accents. Are these people related to my branch of Stupaks? Michael was kind enough to provide me with some insights, but I think this probably trips up many novices. That's where I thought the "proper" accents and surname dates could help one track the changes over time, but this may not work well for a database.

        Similarly with dates of residence I was hoping to allow people to track how a surname moves into and out of a village over time. This may also be something that might be a poor use of a general database and better task for individuals to undertake.

        As for village names, I think it would be easy enough to add twenty or thirty columns for village names, enabling someone to search for any temporal or linguistic variety of the village name. Then this would be easily searchable by end users (Ctrl-F) or perhaps via sortable tabs along the top header bar. While all this is a time intensive task, we do possess the benefit of having a finite number of villages and a fairly good selection of online resources with which to provide all the prior names. Provided that we agree on a format (e.g. Plavnica (YYYY-YYYY)) then I think this work could be subdivided among a number of volunteers without falling solely on the shoulders of a moderator.

        Speaking of moderators ... I have to agree that a solo moderator is better for consistency, but if we are using a drop down scrollable form field then there is little to no opportunity for an end user to input anything into the the database that does not correspond to the conventions we decide to use. That helps eliminate 99% of the consistency issue and enables us to have multiple moderators. Multiple moderators also help extend the longevity of the project as it would not be beholden to the interests and/or time of any one individual, and new moderators can be added as old ones cease participating.

        As for hosting, I would recommend trying out Google Docs. It has the capability of creating a form that auto-populates a spreadsheet. Unfortunately, it is not very sophisticated and I doubt that we would be able to continually update the drop down scrollable form fields on the form with new villages added to the database. Further, I think we would have to enter all villages/surnames by hand (and this is not a task that could be outsourced to several volunteers). The other big drawback with Google Docs is that I have never found a way to update the form without screwing everything else up. So perhaps I'm convincing myself not to use Google Docs, but it does have two big benefits: it's free and it's designed for multiple moderators. Perhaps the Google Docs system is a good way to try out some of our ideas while those who know more about online systems investigate possible hosting / coding solutions?

        I feel there is more issues people have raised, but I don't want to extend this reply too long lest it diminish it's usefulness.
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