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Need abbreviated place names in GEDCOM


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#1 robertjacobs0

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Posted 30 September 2020 - 10:15 AM

For those of us who use the RM specific details in RootsMagic's GEDCOM output, it would be a great help if RootsMagic GEDCOMs would output the user-selected abbreviated place names when they exist.

 

External programs could then successfully use sentence templates such as "[person:given:surname] was born<? [Date]| [date]| on an unknown date>< at [PlaceDetails:plain]>< in [Place:plain:short]>" to make smoother narratives.

 

A change like this should require only very minimal programming changes and would be a great blessing, at least for me.



#2 KFN

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Posted 30 September 2020 - 11:10 AM

Where in the GEDCOM would you place this information?  The Standard does not provide for a tag that an abbreviation could be stored.  However any program that receives the GEDCOM could create its own abbreviations for use in a report.



#3 robertjacobs0

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Posted 30 September 2020 - 11:57 AM

Exactly. As I understand it, RM7 is already putting non-standard entries into its GEDCOMs when the "RM specific details" box is checked on the GEDCOM output screen. John Cardinal's GedSite program utilizes them extensively. The addition I am suggesting will make it easier to prepare smooth narratives in GedSite, GedSite Publisher, and possibly in other programs still to come.



#4 Jerry Bryan

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Posted 30 September 2020 - 12:15 PM

Exactly. As I understand it, RM7 is already putting non-standard entries into its GEDCOMs when the "RM specific details" box is checked on the GEDCOM output screen. John Cardinal's GedSite program utilizes them extensively. The addition I am suggesting will make it easier to prepare smooth narratives in GedSite, GedSite Publisher, and possibly in other programs still to come.

 

I gave up on this issue a very long time ago, and instead I just enter place names the way I want them to appear in reports. I would love to enter USA or United States of America as the country for events that take place in the country of which I am a citizen. But I don't want the USA or United States of America to be repeated a gazillion times in printed reports or Web pages for a general audience (non-genealogists). My audience knows where Tennessee or Texas or California is just fine without the turgid repetition of the country.

I actually agree that all countries should be stored and exchanged. But until genealogy writ large (including GEDCOM) handles this issue in a much better fashion for reporting purposes, I feel obliged to ignore what I view as very inadequate and dysfunctional standards.

 

Jerry



#5 KFN

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Posted 30 September 2020 - 01:03 PM

I disagree that their  is anything wrong with the standard because the reporting program should have a way to take the place value as provided by GEDCOM and display in reports the way you want it displayed, rather than sending information that is not standard  and may be dropped by the receiving program.  My online viewers are from , Norway, USA, Germany, England, Denmark, Sweden, and others so I always provide a country.



#6 robertjacobs0

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Posted 30 September 2020 - 02:50 PM

The RM short place name problem is that the reporting program — in this case GedSite — is that it cannot know from the standard place name (e.g., Bronx, Bronx County, New York, United States) how the short name has been defined by the RootsMagic user. That's why it would be so helpful for RM to output the short name in its GEDCOMS when the short name exists. There are too many possibilities: Bronx, New York; the Bronx; Bronx, NY, USA . . . etc.

 

In general, if I may say so, I do not think that a "standard" can be devised which will accommodate all the vagaries of human taste and experience. Of the genealogical programs I've used (UFT, TMG, RootsMagic), TMG seemed to me to offer the most powerful means of standardizing place names. The next step up would have been free-form. That's all very well within one program, but the moment one expects some other program to interpret free-form transfers accurately, one is in for trouble.

 

If free-form is the "standard" one may as well use a typewriter as a computer.



#7 TomH

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Posted 10 October 2020 - 06:01 PM

You'd think RM Inc would have found a way to transmit its Abbreviated and Standardised Place Names through GEDCOM, given that is the medium by which its drag'n'drop moves data from one database to another.

Tom user of RM7630 FTM2017 Ancestry.ca FamilySearch.org FindMyPast.com
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#8 Vyger

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Posted 20 October 2020 - 12:08 PM

I disagree that their  is anything wrong with the standard because the reporting program should have a way to take the place value as provided by GEDCOM and display in reports the way you want it displayed, rather than sending information that is not standard  and may be dropped by the receiving program.  My online viewers are from , Norway, USA, Germany, England, Denmark, Sweden, and others so I always provide a country.

 

 

Whilst this has been reported many times I agree that the reporting should facilitate the users needs especially easy on a csv field.

 

The other case which I feel is completely unecessary is where users input "_____", "[Jones]" etc into Name fields just because they don't like seeing blanks in their reports. A simple programmed solution to help encourage better Name standards would be an option of "What to print if a name field is blank" and allow the user to enter their preferred string.

 

If I am producing a report for data fishing purposes I often enter a long string of underscores for missing information to encourage the recipient to write in what they know.


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