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Jerry Bryan

Member Since 06 Aug 2006
Online Last Active Today, 06:12 PM

Topics I've Started

Note Formatting Option on GEDCOM Export

11 November 2018 - 08:32 AM

Some of my RM sentence templates include some of RM's limited formatting controls such as <b>...</b> for bold. If care is not taken, these formatting controls can be lost on a GEDCOM export.


The same formatting controls are used in RM's notes. With RM's user interface for notes, you don't actually see the formatting controls. Rather, it's a WYSIWYG sort of thing where you highlight the text you wish to be in bold  or in italics or whatever and then click the B button for bold or the I button for italics or whatever. The buttons are in the tool bar for RM's note editor. With RM's user interface for sentence templates, you actually have to type in the formatting controls and you actually can see the formatting controls. In either case, you can see the formatting controls in any GEDCOM which is exported by RM.


RM's GEDCOM process includes an option called "Note formatting (bold, etc.)" without the quotes. I have just discovered that this option controls the inclusion or exclusion of formatting controls such as <b>...</b> not only in RM's notes but also for RM's sentence templates.I don't know if this is a good thing or a bad thing, but it is something to be aware of if you use RM's formatting controls in your sentence templates. To retain your formatting controls on GEDCOM export, you have to enable the "Note formatting (bold, etc.)" option. You probably want to enable this option most of the time anyway and it's the default. The only problem would be if you wanted to disable the option for your notes and leave the option enabled for your sentence templates. There is no way to do so.




"Keep using this app?" question with external image viewer

28 October 2018 - 08:40 AM

This may be strictly a Windows 10 problem. It may be strictly an RM problem. It may be both. I don't know for sure.


When I have files that are linked into RM as files instead of images, they open in an external viewer instead of in RM. The viewer which is used is the Windows default. This is correct behavior.


The problem I'm about to describe has been going on for a long time but it has finally begun to be irritating enough to drive me crazy. The problem is that when RM launches the external media viewer, Windows 10 asks me if I want to keep using that application. Windows asks the same question every time RM launches the viewer. There is even a checkbox to make the selection permanent so I don't get the "Keep using this app?"  every time, but I get the question every time even if I select the checkbox to say yes I want to use this app every time.


There is some Windows 10 background behind this problem. Windows apps used to be able to set themselves as the Windows default app for various file extensions. A PDF viewer might set itself as the Windows default viewer for PDF files. A JPG viewer might set itself as the Windows default viewer for JPG files, etc. This was considered to be a security problem, so somewhere along the way there was a Windows 10 update that removed the ability of apps to make themselves the default viewer for various file extensions. Instead, only the user can set default file extension viewers for various file extensions. However, if an app does try to change the default, the next time you try to open a file with that extension, Windows will ask you if you want to keep the same viewer you have been using or if you want to switch to a different viewer. It's only supposed to ask the question once, but it seems to ask the question every time you open a file with that file extension.


Actually, it's more complicated than that. Numerous users have reported the problem on various Microsoft forums and other forums. But for me, things work correctly if I open a file from Windows File Explorer. For me, things work correctly if I open a file from Agent Ransack which is an app and which is not a part of Windows. For me, things do not work correctly if I open a file from RM. Even though this has been a known problem in Windows, since it works correctly for me from Windows and from Agent Ransack and not from RM, I wonder if there is a problem in RM that could be fixed (in RM8, not RM7 - or maybe the problem will just disappear by magic in RM8!).


This problem does not keep me from opening files with an external viewer in RM. It's just that there is always an extra and annoying click that shouldn't be there. I should also mention that if you Google this problem, there will be numerous discussions of it on numerous technical forums. The original  posters almost always are very careful to say that they have set up the correct associations between their file extensions and their default apps. The responders almost always give the original posters the directions on how to set up the correct associations between file extensions and default apps, a step that the original posters have already completed. This is especially true if the responders work for Microsoft. Either the responders are A.I. bots from Microsoft which don't understand the question, or else they a human employees of Microsoft who seem to be choosing not to understand the question. I mention this to forestall any responses on this forum which simply gives directions on how to set up the correct associations between file extensions and default apps in Windows 10. Rather, my question is why is there not a problem with Windows itself and with Agent Ransack but there is a problem with RM.




"Headings" for "Sections" in RM's Narrative Reports

25 October 2018 - 09:35 AM

RM's narrative reports don't really have "sections" and therefore the non-existent "sections" don't have "headings". Nevertheless, RM's narrative reports seem to me to have a limited sense of having sections which have headings. To wit, the portion of a narrative report for a particular person often has three "sections":

  • A "section" for the individual facts for the person.
  • A "section" for the family facts for for the person and their spouse such as marriage and divorce, plus a list of their children. This "section" repeats for each spouse if there are multiple spouses.
  • A "section" for the individual facts for the spouse. This "section" repeats for each spouse if there are multiple spouses.

This organization of the data is standards compliant, for example it is compliant to the NGSQ standard and to the NEHGS standard. Nonetheless, this organization of the data sometimes give heartburn to RM users. For example, it results in marriage and divorce events not being listed in timeline order for the person. I solve this problem by using RM's shared fact facility to share the marriage and divorce facts with each of the parties to the marriage or divorce. The marriage and divorce therefore print both with the individual facts for each spouse and with the family facts.


In addition to creating a true timeline for each individual, I also have heartburn with the "headings" for these "sections", and I have just noticed a new problem with the "headings". There is nothing in RM to define these so-called "headings" and the "headings" are simply implicit in the first fact that is listed for the section. Depending on how your sentence templates are set up, you may not even think of these "headings" as headings at all. In the case of the "section" for the individual, the first fact is usually the birth fact and the sentence template for the birth fact has the effect of creating a "heading" for the "section" which includes the person's name. With my sentence templates, this is the only time the person's name appears. With more typical sentence templates, this may be the only time the person's full name appears ([Person:Full]) and some sort of shortened or pronoun form of the name may appear thereafter. In my own use of RM, there is no heartburn with this "section" because I always have exactly one birth fact for each fact and I don't use things like a christening fact as a surrogate for a birth fact and I don't use multiple birth facts. So let's let that one go.


The "section" for family facts and children usually has a "heading" which lists both spouse's names using the [Couple] variable with the [Couple] variable being contained in the sentence template for the Marriage fact. In other words, the Marriage fact is usually the first fact for the family facts section and it creates a "heading" for the "section" much like the birth fact does for the "section" for the individual. The problem comes if the marriage fact does not come first. For example, if I can find it I include a newspaper marriage article for the couple that often may be found in what used to be called the Society Pages of the newspaper. I have a user defined fact for such articles called Marriage Newspaper Article. If the article appears in the newspaper after the marriage, there is no problem with the "heading" for the family facts and children section of the report. If the article appears in the newspaper before the marriage, there is a problem with my sentence templates because the Society Pages article becomes the first fact in the family facts and children "section" of the report instead of the marriage fact being first. I can fix the problem by customizing the sentence templates for particular facts separately from the customization I do in the Fact List, but I try to avoid doing that. I have been solving the problem by giving a false date to the newspaper article fact to place it after the marriage, but I don't like doing that. That's the new problem I have discovered (or re-discovered). Namely, timeline order for newspaper articles can mess up my "headings" for the family facts and children section of narrative reports. I can fix the problem with customization of sentence templates for individual facts or by placing the newspaper articles in false order. I don't like either solution. I'm not sure what I'll do moving forward.


The "section" for the spouse has a "heading" which I have complained about many times before. The "heading" seems to be created by a secret and hidden sentence template in RM that the user cannot control. It basically lists the spouse's birth fact and parents and it does so in a format that does not meet my needs. My wish is that this sentence be totally under control of a sentence template that I can specify. In the absence of such a feature, I deal with this problem by using a Notepad++ macro to edit the narrative report after saving the report to an RTF file from RM and before printing the RTF file.



Family Fact support in People View

10 September 2018 - 05:57 PM

This one may already be in the list, but if not then my wish is support for family facts in People View. In the event a person has more than one spouse, family facts for that person should be chosen for the same spouse that would be chosen if the same person were displayed in Family View or Pedigree View. In the event of duplicate family facts of the same type for the same spouse such as marrying the same person twice, People View already has a solution. I'm not sure what it is, but for example if a person has two birth facts then People View only displays one of the two birth facts. The same approach could be taken with two marriages to the same person.




People View, Multi-column sort

10 September 2018 - 12:29 PM

This one may already be in the list, but if not then my wish is support for multi-column sort capability in People View.