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#1 tmalek

tmalek

    Tom Malek

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Posted 11 August 2012 - 05:01 AM

I recently started reviewing the role sentences I had previously created for the census tag and I see I have not been consistent. Some role sentences use the [W] variable while others use the [R:xxx] variable. It has been some time since I created the roles so I do not remember if a had a reason (valid or otherwise) for the dissimilar sentences. I have gone through the help file but am unable to see a clear distinction between the two uses.

Is it merely a matter of preference or are there “rules” that help determine when one should, or at least it would be preferable, to use one or the other, [W] or [R:xxx]?

Thanks.
Tom

#2 Michael Hannah

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Posted 11 August 2012 - 05:35 AM

It matters whether the sentence being considered is for a Principal or for a Witness. My simplistic "rules" are as follows:

[W] is intended for a Witness sentence, and refers to the current Witness, regardless of the role assigned to this Witness.

[WO] is intended for a Principal sentence, and refers to all of the Witnesses, regardless of the roles assigned to them.

[R:role] can be used in either a Witness sentence, or a Principal sentence. It is primarily used when you desire to be able to refer to only some of the Witnesses, or when you want to use different predefined sentences for different types of Witnesses, so you separately designate them using roles. Like most role variables it will usually output all names of all people assigned this role in this tag. However if used in a sentence for the person who has this role and is the focus of the narrative, it will only output that one person’s name. Therefore, it is usually recommended to avoid using this variable in a sentence for a person assigned this role to avoid this confusion.

Other users may suggest their own "rules".
Michael
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#3 tmalek

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    Tom Malek

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Posted 12 August 2012 - 03:19 PM

Michael - - I did some testing of sentences and [WO] works well in some circumstances. As to census sentence structure the children [W] came out fine on the Principal narrative report, but each child had the surname repeated for each one. I don't see it in help so I assume it can't be done but can [WO] be restricted to given name only? Like [WOF]?
Tom

#4 Michael Hannah

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Posted 12 August 2012 - 04:44 PM

Hi Tom,

I think so, but you will need to test it. I think all the people specifically assigned the role "Witness" can also be referenced by the variable [R:Witness]. (But nothing like a role [R:WitnessOther] exists and cannot be used.) So if only the children in your census tag are explicitly assigned the role "Witness", and the parents are assigned "Principal" then [RF:Witness] should produce all the childrens' first names in the Principal sentence. But the ability to distinguish children from others (e.g. neices, uncles, etc.) who might also be enumerated and thus also assigned "Witness" is a good example of the need for roles. And the [R:rolename] variables give you access to the seven different qualifiers for the names. Most people would choose to have a role for that tag of "Child" that is only assigned to the children to make it easy to have a Principal sentence using [RF:Child]. Role names also make sentence templates more understandable.

For further explanations of roles and their variables, see the TMG Help system in the following topics:
Roles
Tag Type Definition: Roles and Sentences
Variables (Event Tags)

Hope this gives you ideas,
Michael
See my book on how I customize TMG My Way.
My website.

#5 Pierce.Reid

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Posted 14 August 2012 - 01:33 PM

Michael,
When you use the variable [R:rolename] as the subject in a sentence for individuals that are not the Principal, and you want the tag for that person to be printed in a Journal or Naritive report, TMG will list all people havng that role in that tag as the subject for the sentence. Obviously the verb in the sentence should be singular if there is only one person in that role, and plural if there are more than one. That suggests that it is impossible to create a sentence template that will produce good English both when there is one person in the role and when there are more than one.

Personally, I would like to be able to ignore the generic Witness role, and use the Principal role just for those who are most closely related to me (not the role TMG has decided should be the Principal for a particular tag type). As an Ultimate Family Tree fan, I use roles everywhere, including many I have created complete with sentence templates. However, I have not found a way to easily deal with this problem.

Pierce
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