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TEI-L  May 2006

TEI-L May 2006

Subject:

Re: Authoring app information revisited

From:

Martin Holmes <[log in to unmask]>

Reply-To:

[log in to unmask]

Date:

Mon, 29 May 2006 11:54:21 -0700

Content-Type:

text/plain

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text/plain (161 lines)

HI Dan,



Dan O'Donnell wrote:
> I guess my only question would be to double check the nesting. This
> looks pretty flat: for example, i.e. there is no explicit relationship
> between any of the elements describing aspects of the creator tool. Are
> you assuming that if more than one tool is used each would have a
> separate <creatorApp> element? Otherwise how would you know what
> belonged to what.

I'm assuming that any application that edited the file would add its own 
creatorApp tag (or modify one it added in the past). There's a rationale 
for that in the discussion below.

> If you are considering that one or more <creatorApp> could appear in
> <respStmt>, then let me suggest putting the appID as an att value on
> creatorApp at the very least.

That makes sense. So it would then look like this:

<creatorApp appId="ImageMarkupTool1">
      <appIdent key="appName">Image Markup Tool</ident>
      <appIdent key="appVersion">1.0.3.5</appIdent>
      <appIdent key="appURI">http://..../</appIdent>
      <appIdent key="userDefined" userKey="licence">Mozilla Public 
Licence 1.1</appIdent>
      <date value="2006-05-25T11:03:55">Last save: 2006-05-25 at
  11:03:55</date>
  </creatorApp>

Cheers,
Martin

> -d
> 
> 
> 
> On Mon, 2006-29-05 at 09:11 -0700, Martin Holmes wrote:
> 
>> <creatorApp>
>>     <appIdent key="appId">ImageMarkupTool1</ident>
>>     <appIdent key="appName">Image Markup Tool</ident>
>>     <appIdent key="appVersion">1.0.3.5</appIdent>
>>     <appIdent key="appURI">http://..../</appIdent>
>>     <appIdent key="userDefined" userKey="licence">Mozilla Public Licence
>> 1.1</appIdent>
>>     <date value="2006-05-25T11:03:55">Last save: 2006-05-25 at
>> 11:03:55</date>
>> </creatorApp>
>>
>> This would involve only two new tags, <creatorApp> and <appIdent>, and 
>> two attributes, "key" (an enumeration) and "userKey" (a string). Lou's 
>> suggestion that it belongs in encodingDesc is surely correct. I've 
>> included below the more detailed explanation from my message last week. 
>> Before I submit this as a feature request on the sourceforge site, I'd 
>> like a little more feedback (especially from other people involved with 
>> creating TEI tools). Any comments?
>>
>>
>> [previous explanation]
>>
>> It might be best to begin by setting out the array of information we may
>> want to record with these tags. I've already listed three items:
>>
>> 	appName (human-usable application title)
>>
>> 	appURI (i.e. where you could go to get the application, or info about it)
>>
>> 	appVersion (conventional dot-separated Major, Minor, Release and Build
>> integers)
>>
>> I think this may also be very useful:
>>
>> 	appId:
>>
>> This would be an identifier for the application which conforms to xml:id
>> constraints. Such ids are used by application developers, for example to
>> create a mutex when an application is running in Windows, so that an
>> installer or uninstaller can check to see whether the application is
>> already running before attempting to install it or uninstall it.
>>
>> We can imagine lots of others, relating to licensing (GPL, Moz 1.1,
>> etc.), registered user, programmer or publisher, but these are less
>> important and more difficult to constrain to a fixed format.
>>
>> I prefer "app" to "product" as a prefix; "product" has a rather nasty
>> marketing-speak flavour about it to me, although that's a personal thing.
>>
>> There is an analogue for all this in the Windows file versioning
>> information system (and presumably on other platforms too). Any Windows
>> executable can contain a data structure which encodes a range of
>> name-value pairs, many of which are formally documented and expected
>> (major version, minor version, build, release, etc.) and some of which
>> are conventional, but it also allows you to add your own name-value
>> pairs and use standard API calls to retrieve them. If we're considering
>> creating a new structure or set of tags, I think it would be a good idea
>> to follow a similar model, with some items we'd expect the application
>> to add to the file, but with the flexibility for other information to be
>> encoded in a standard way. Something like this is what I imagine:
>>
>> <creatorApp>
>>     <appIdent key="appId">ImageMarkupTool1</ident>
>>     <appIdent key="appName">Image Markup Tool</ident>
>>     <appIdent key="appVersion">1.0.3.5</appIdent>
>>     <appIdent key="appURI">http://..../</appIdent>
>>     <appIdent key="userDefined" userKey="licence">Mozilla Public Licence
>> 1.1</appIdent>
>>     <date value="2006-05-25T11:03:55">Last save: 2006-05-25 at
>> 11:03:55</date>
>> </creatorApp>
>>
>> With a system like this, getting all the available info about an
>> application is simply a question of iterating through the appIdent tags.
>> specific info can be retrieved using the key attribute (or whatever
>> would be a better name for it). The key attribute could be constrained
>> to an enumeration which also includes "userDefined", and that could be
>> used in combination with an unconstrained userKey attribute to add any
>> info the developer thinks is required.
>>
>> The date tag is useful in this scenario:
>>
>> We can envisage multiple applications working on a file in sequence, and
>> it would be politic not to destroy the creatorApp information about
>> previous applications. For instance, imagine that someone creates a
>> really powerful and intuitive tool for building teiHeaders, and that's
>> all it does. You might mark up an image using the Image Markup Tool
>> (which lets you edit the teiHeader as text, but doesn't help you with
>> it), and then use the teiHeader tool to add an elaborate header. You
>> could then edit the file again in the Image Markup Tool (which wouldn't
>> damage or change any elements of the teiHeader other than those which
>> directly concern it). It would be important to know which of these
>> applications was used to edit the file, and when. So each tool, assuming
>> they're both using this proposed versioning system, would be able to
>> identify its own creatorApp tag (using the appId) and modify that every
>> time it edited the file, while leaving the other application's
>> creatorApp tag alone.
>>
>> Does this make sense?
>>
>> I really don't want to customize my schemas to add support for this
>> information; it really is useless if it can't be found in a predictable
>> location in a reliable format, because the whole idea is that it be read
>> and written automatically by authoring programs.
>>
>> [end of previous comments]
>>
>> Cheers,
>> Martin
>>
>>

-- 
Martin Holmes
University of Victoria Humanities Computing and Media Centre
([log in to unmask])
Half-Baked Software, Inc.
([log in to unmask])
[log in to unmask]

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