8.0082 Rs: Text Databases (5/167)

Tue, 28 Jun 1994 03:01:52 EDT

Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 8, No. 0082. Tuesday, 28 Jun 1994.

(1) Date: Fri, 24 Jun 1994 20:13:43 -0400 (EDT) (47 lines)
From: Andrew Burday <andy@dep.philo.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Text Databases

(2) Date: Fri, 24 Jun 1994 16:32:24 -0600 (CST) (51 lines)
From: "Robert L. Jarrett @ University of Houston--Downtown"
Subject: Re: 8.0078 Rs: More on Text Databases and Note-Taking (2/56)

(3) Date: Sun, 26 Jun 94 10:36:03 EDT (24 lines)
From: Glenn Everett <IVAA@UTMARTN>
Subject: Re: 8.0075 Rs: Text Databases

(4) Date: Fri, 24 Jun 1994 14:08:15 -0400 (EDT) (12 lines)
Subject: Note-takers

(5) Date: Mon, 27 JUN 94 13:34:36 BST (33 lines)
From: DR_HOPKIN@tower-vax.london-guildhall.ac.uk
Subject: RE: 8.0067 S/W Qs: Text Databases; Search Engines (2/85)

(1) --------------------------------------------------------------------
Date: Fri, 24 Jun 1994 20:13:43 -0400 (EDT)
From: Andrew Burday <andy@dep.philo.mcgill.ca>
Subject: Text Databases

I recently posted a query on Humanist regarding programs for creating and
manipulating databases of text. I have received several useful
responses, along with some requests for summaries. I will post a summary
to Humanist within a week or two.

The reason for my present post is that, due to some problems upgrading the
operating system on our mail server, I lost all my mail that arrived
between Wednesday night and Thursday late afternoon. I imagine that there
probably were some responses to my query among the mail that was lost. I
have responses from the following people. If you sent me a response, are
not on this list, and still have a copy of your response lying around
somewhere, I'd be very pleased if you could send me another copy. If you
ARE on this list (or you sent your response to Humanist rather than
directly to me), I have your response, thank you very much, and please
DON'T send me another copy.

1 Jun 21 Nicholas Heer (5,435) Text Databases
2 Jun 22 Mr A.P. Berber Sar (2,494) databases
3 Jun 22 Cheryl Malone (1,698) organizing notes
4 Jun 22 WALLACHP@CSUSYS.CT (580) Information Manager
5 Jun 22 Michael Ossar (1,776) text bases
6 Jun 22 David Beer (3,235) your request for info on computer sof
7 Jun 22 Lia Michelle Hotch (1,379) Note-taking software
8 Jun 22 PERSHEYE@aspen.uml (767) notetaking on PC
9 Jun 22 Robert Davis (975) INDEX PROGRAMS
10 Jun 21 Elaine Brennan (5,664) 8.0067 S/W Qs: Text Databases; Search
11 Jun 22 Kristy Miller (4,218) Re: taking notes on a PC
12 Jun 22 Elaine Brennan (9,988) 8.0075 Rs: Text Databases;WordCrunch
13 Jun 22 Harry Hahne (18,513) Library Master
14 Jun 23 Elaine Brennan (4,598) 8.0078 Rs: More on Text Databases and
15 Jun 23 BESTONE@utxvms.cc. (2,650) PC Databases

Again, thanks to all who responded, and I will post a summary of the
private responses fairly soon.


Andrew Burday

(2) --------------------------------------------------------------66----
Date: Fri, 24 Jun 1994 16:32:24 -0600 (CST)
From: "Robert L. Jarrett @ University of Houston--Downtown"
Subject: Re: 8.0078 Rs: More on Text Databases and Note-Taking (2/56)

Regarding the postings on note-taking, particularly McCarthy's thoughtful
rponses, for scholars working on the Windows platform, I have a suggestion.
I currently use Ecco, a PIM (personal information manager) for note-taking.
Based on an outline metaphor and including various templates for various
types of work, the program (at least the "professional" version) allows
the use of additional "column", as many as the user needs.
For my own use, I enter quotations or summaries in an outline
page, which is collapsible, allowing you to see as much detail as you
desire. Each individual note is assigned to a subject or topic folder, keyed
to column designated for topics (you can set this up as a pull-down list
to the right of the page, enter a note, then click on as many topic key
terms as appropriate for the not. The quotation or summary, then, is
assigned to as many topic folders as terms clicked. Then I add columns
for all the entries appropriate to bibliography entries (basically, I adapted
Ecco's "
"Research" template. I add each individual author also to a pulldown list,
so further notes can be assigned to authors by pulling down the column
list and clicking.
The advantage of Ecco is that one can look at a database from a series of
views--by topic, by author, by year, etc.--or one can use a filtered
searcor the outlining controls to see as much or as little information
as one desires.
The result is an extremely flexible note-taking database or databases;
I cut and paste from Ecco notes into Microsoft Word for Windows, which I use
to write articles, etc. The downside is that one must spend several days
poring over the Ecco manual, studying the research or other template, and
setting up your own customized template for notetaking. For large projects,
however, I've found the effort worthwhile; less experienced Windows users
may well not. For those with scanners, the reviews on Page-Keeper (program
by one of the OCR makers, either Caere or Calera) might be worth a look,
though I can't speak from experience. Another, perhaps easier route for
Windows users, is to take notes on WordProcessing documents, then use an
indexing program like Eclipse Find, to find all documents containing a
key term or set of key terms, for an instant database or your word-processing
files. Eclipse Find (like the old Lotus Magellan, which I formerly used)
allows one to search by key term and returns a list of files on the left
of the screen, with a view of the document (key-term highlighted) on the right.
Like Magellan, it also allows you to open the document or "launch" the program
which created the document by double-clicking on the document me. A few
years previous, I used Magellan to create a kind of database out of all my
text files created by WordStar, importing these notes into my article.
Sorry for the length; I thought my use of these two methods might
be useful to scholars like myself interested in adapting old methods to
the advantages of "new" technology. I'd be glad to discuss my experiences
with any of you by "direct" e-mail.
Rob Jarrett
University of Houston--Downtown
(3) --------------------------------------------------------------33----
Date: Sun, 26 Jun 94 10:36:03 EDT
From: Glenn Everett <IVAA@UTMARTN>
Subject: Re: 8.0075 Rs: Text Databases

>Andrew Burday asks:
>> So what I'm looking for is a good way to keep databases of text, in
>> such a way that they can be searched and displayed in whatever form is
>> most useful for the moment. What I need is DOS or MS Windows software
>> that will let me conveniently enter and flexibly manipulate my notes.
>> Ideally each record would have multiple fields for author, title,
>> journal, etc., plus a variable-length field for the actual notes.
This is exactly what NotaBene's _Orbis_ (formerly _Textbase_) does
easlily and elegantly in connection with _Notabene_, the word processing
package developed for the Modern Language Association. Add _Ibid_, and
you have also a convenient bibliography program. Available through The
Technology Group, Baltimore, MD.

Glenn Everett
English Department
University of Tennessee at Martin
(4) --------------------------------------------------------------24----
Date: Fri, 24 Jun 1994 14:08:15 -0400 (EDT)
Subject: Note-takers

I heartily recommend Papyrus, a note-taker with ample room for
comments and great flexibility of input, searching, and output:
see _Computers and the Humanities_ 26 ('92), 162 ff.

Whitney Bolton, Department of English
Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ 08903-5054
Office (908) 932-7633, Home (609) 924-8654
(5) --------------------------------------------------------------40----
Date: Mon, 27 JUN 94 13:34:36 BST
From: DR_HOPKIN@tower-vax.london-guildhall.ac.uk
Subject: RE: 8.0067 S/W Qs: Text Databases; Search Engines (2/85)

Re Text Databases and notetaking (Andrew Burday's enquiry)

For some years I have been using, with increasing satisfaction, various
versions of ideaList, the highly flexible text retrieval package produced
by Blackwell Scientific of Oxford. A free version of the Windows versin
was given away with Personal Computer World last November.

In very crude terms, ideaList is an information manager, enabling you to
more or less replicate the old 6x4 record card system - each fie

(that should read file) can contain a mixture of record types, with a large
capacity for indexed or non-indexed characters, plus in the Windows verson
images, etc. etc.

By using different types of fields, one can handle numerical sorting and
even export values for processing in a spreadsheet etc. What is most important
is that altering the structure of any record or field is extremely simple,
which means that the package is perfect for taking notes in unpredictable

I am sure there are other ideaList users among the Humanist community. It
would be interesting to hear their reactions.

Deian Hopkin
London Guildhall University

DR_Hopkin @uk.ac.lgu.tvax