also, backward compatability?

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also, backward compatability?

Bruce D'Arcus
Also, I have a question:

Does anyone really use the existing citation support, such that  
backward compatibility is a real concern? Just wondering, because we  
have it as a requirement:

<http://wiki.services.openoffice.org/wiki/ 
Bibliographic_Project's_Developer_Page#Backwards_and_Forwards_Compatibil
ity>

Bruce

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Re: also, backward compatability and Word 2007

Jon Rubin
Hi all, have downloaded the Office Beta so a few thoughts on that and
other questions Bruce posed:

I'm not so sure that complete backwards compatibility is needed, just so
long as it imported the fields as plain text, if we had a properly
working bibliography function it wouldn't take too long to amend most
documents but some sort of import (of previous bibliographies)  function
is vital.

I've been playing with Microsoft Beta at Bruce's suggestion. Now I've
been using OO since version 1.01 because back then Word couldn't handle
footnotes properly (I'm an academic and with long documents Word had the
habit of not keeping footnotes on the right page) and have stuck with it
because other features like handling styles properly was there from the
beginning but if Microsoft can get a bibliography function working
properly I may find the temptation to switch back overwhelming, assuming
they've fixed the footnote problem in the last five years!.

On another question of Bruce's: no I would not give up a style editing
GUI. It's not just that I have no interest in hand coding XML (however
simple) but I don't think any of my colleagues would do either. 90% of
the time not editing the styles won't be a problem but there's always
one journal out there that wants it slightly different. Of course if
Microsoft enforces strict following of style guidelines by not allowing
any flexibility and journals fall into line because everybody is using
Word, then this may not be a problem in any event!

I've only played with the Beta a bit but here are a few thoughts. the
manage source seems good. I like being able to search quickly for a
citation. I assume the point of having the separate master list and
current list (as opposed to just one) is so that a works used can be
different from the works cited (this feature seems to be broken
currently in Word). However the insert citation seems a bit wonky. I
only have two citations so far, so a simple drop down list is fine but I
could have hundreds - or at least enough to drop down past the end of
the page making inserting a potential problem. I'll add more citations
later to see how it handles longer lists.

What exactly is the 'tag name' for? I assume its supposed to be the
unique identifier for that record. This I suppose is in response to
Bruce's query about remote and local records - it's only if that tag
name is /really/ unique that that problem does not cause a major
headache - or have I misunderstood the point about local and remote
records? I suppose this could be answered by seeing how it handles when
you have a new master record with some duplicated records (the help
claims that, "you might connect to a file on a share, on a research
colleague's computer or server, or on a Web site that is hosted by a
university or research institution" ... well we shall see), but that is
something for me to experiment with later.

Insert place holder, for those times (or people) who don't want to
interrupt a flow of writing is also a good idea.

There doesn't seem to be any way to import bibliographies from formats
other than an xml file, which is a major problem, so I've only added a
couple of references.

It doesn't appear to offer a footnote style of referencing so I can't
tell whether or not it can handle switching to and from that kind of
referencing and renumbering the footnotes.

My partner (also an academic) just saw me demoing the bib features in
Word and she was drooling. I guess non-academics (i.e. Sun) just don't
understand the pain of referencing and changing styles.

Yes I have voted for the bibliography improvements.

Regards,

Jon.

Bruce D'Arcus wrote:

> Also, I have a question:
>
> Does anyone really use the existing citation support, such that
> backward compatibility is a real concern? Just wondering, because we
> have it as a requirement:
>
> <http://wiki.services.openoffice.org/wiki/Bibliographic_Project's_Developer_Page#Backwards_and_Forwards_Compatibility>
>
>
> Bruce
>
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Re: also, backward compatability and Word 2007

Bruce D'Arcus

On Jun 25, 2006, at 9:37 PM, Jon Rubin wrote:

> On another question of Bruce's: no I would not give up a style editing
> GUI. It's not just that I have no interest in hand coding XML (however
> simple) but I don't think any of my colleagues would do either. 90% of
> the time not editing the styles won't be a problem but there's always
> one journal out there that wants it slightly different. Of course if
> Microsoft enforces strict following of style guidelines by not
> allowing any flexibility and journals fall into line because everybody
> is using Word, then this may not be a problem in any event!

There are two separate issues:

1) what we get programmers to commit to coding
2) a larger vision of possibilities

On the second, I've long thought that we ought to get to a place where
a user never has to edit a style, or that if they did, they might do it
via a web interface tied to a repository. So imagine instead of
worrying about this, OOoBib could just grab your needed style off the
web.

> However the insert citation seems a bit wonky. I only have two
> citations so far, so a simple drop down list is fine but I could have
> hundreds - or at least enough to drop down past the end of the page
> making inserting a potential problem. I'll add more citations later to
> see how it handles longer lists.

I actually hadn't tested that bit, but I agree. I think we'd always
assumed a simple filterable table where one could drag-and-drop, even
if the database was remote.

> What exactly is the 'tag name' for? I assume its supposed to be the
> unique identifier for that record.

Yeah, kind of. They have a separate GUID field in the XML, but this is
a user-specific key.

> This I suppose is in response to Bruce's query about remote and local
> records - it's only if that tag name is /really/ unique that that
> problem does not cause a major headache - or have I misunderstood the
> point about local and remote records?

Yeah, that's what I'm getting at. MS uses this key to associate
citation with record, and I've told them this is a bad idea.

> I suppose this could be answered by seeing how it handles when you
> have a new master record with some duplicated records (the help claims
> that, "you might connect to a file on a share, on a research
> colleague's computer or server, or on a Web site that is hosted by a
> university or research institution" ... well we shall see), but that
> is something for me to experiment with later.

I think the problem will come up when you have people collaborating on
documents.

> There doesn't seem to be any way to import bibliographies from formats
> other than an xml file, which is a major problem, so I've only added a
> couple of references.

Correct, though it's clear MS still has some stuff planned before final
release. I wouldn't be hard to add that.

> It doesn't appear to offer a footnote style of referencing so I can't
> tell whether or not it can handle switching to and from that kind of
> referencing and renumbering the footnotes.

It's hard to tell if they allow this or not. In theory (based on
looking through the XML) it should support it, but who knows.

> Yes I have voted for the bibliography improvements.

Good; we're now at 72!

Bruce

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Re: also, backward compatability?

Matthias Basler-2
In reply to this post by Bruce D'Arcus
Bruce wrote:
> Does anyone really use the existing citation support, such that  
> backward compatibility is a real concern? Just wondering, because we  
> have it as a requirement:

1. I used the database, but always started a new database for a new document, because as the database grew larger I wouldn't find the record I wanted to insert any more. (It's this stupid unsorted dropdown list.)
So I have no "bibliographic database" to loose.

2. I believe the question if people are using the citation support right now is only one aspect. The other one is imho that it must be possible to correctly read and write OOO1.x and 2.0 documents, so we need some backward compatibility (or a very intelligent import/export) to ensure this.
--
Matthias Basler
[hidden email]

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