Some Citations That Are Hard To Find

I have a group of about 300 people that I want to clean up completely - citations, media, all available facts, etc. Some of the citations for these 300 people are in my “old style” and most of the citations are in my “new style”. I want to convert all the “old style” citations for those 300 people to “new style” So I want to find those people in the group who have “old style” citations so I can focus just on them for converting “old style” citations to “new style” citations.

I can easily identify the style of the citation by the name of the Master Source. Citations in my “new style” have a Master Source where the first character in the Master Source name is an asterisk. Citations in my"old style" have a Master Source where neither the first character nor any other character in the Master Source name is an asterisk.

I have the individuals in the group color coded as red in color set #3. So I can find people in my group who have “new style” citations using an Advanced Search something like the following.

Color            => Set 3: => is red
AND
Source (general> => name           => contains => *

But what I really want to find is people in my group who have “old style” citations. The logical way to do so would seem to be the opposite search, something like the following.

Color            => Set 3:         => is Red
AND
Source (general> => name           => does not contain => *

However, the search for “does not contain => *” does not produce the desired outcome and I can’t think of any way to achieve the desired outcome from the RM user interface.

A search for “does not contain => *” works fine for individuals who only have one citation. But if an individual has more than once citation, the does not contain => * criterion works only if every one of the individual’s citations is “old style”. There doesn’t seem to be way to find individuals who have a mix of “old style” and “new style” citations.

The same problem exists when trying to find “old style” citations that are associated with facts. If I can find a way to solve the problem for citations for individuals, the same solution would work for citations for facts.

I could entirely work around this problem by using an SQLite script instead of trying to use RM’s Advanced Search. But I try to use RM’s built in tools as much as possible. So instead, my thinking is to use a totally different SQLite script that would be used only single time. Namely, it would add a different character such as perhaps a $ to the name of all the “old style” Master Sources. Then I could find them very easily moving forward from the RM user interface using an Advanced search for “contains => $”. In other words, “contains” works fine for what I am trying to accomplish but “does not contain” does not work in a way that meets my needs.

It’s trivial to distinguish my “old style” citations from my “new style” citations by looking at the source list. But doing it in that direction doesn’t get you to the 300 individuals in question.

There may be a way to do this from inside the RM user interface that I haven’t thought of yet. But otherwise, I would wish for RM’s Advanced Search to be improved to be able to handle this kind of search.

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I cannot think of a way to do so from within the RM user interface. If the developers had fulfilled the 15-yrs old enhancement requests for nesting and grouping of search criteria, your search could work. Deep diving with SQLite is your only solution.

I have now inserted a $ character at the front of each Master Source name which didn’t begin with an * character. It was necessary to use an SQLite script to do so, but it was an extremely simple script. It would have taken far too long to edit all the Master Source names by hand. But having done so, I can now work on my project without any further need of SQLite scripts. Which is to say that in combination with other criteria such as color coding or a particular surname, I can find people with my “old style” citations by searching for

Source (general) => name => contains => $

and by searching for

Any Fact => Source => name => contains => $

It will be a project of many months that I have been putting off for many years. But it will be nice to be able to do the work totally from with RM without any further need of SQLite. It’s just a shame that Advanced Search does not adequately support a search for “does not contain” in the names of Master Sources when a person or a fact has more than one citation.

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Could you work from the Citation Used list on the Sources page? That would tell you exactly who is using the old Citations that need to be changed and then open the Edit Person screen from there.

That was actually my original strategy. The problem with that approach was that it didn’t filter down to the 300 individuals of interest.

I have many thousands of people who still have the “old style” citations and for now I just want to focus on the 300 individuals of interest. I have the 300 people color coded.and I wanted to search for the color coding AND for people who still have “old style” citations. The criterion for the color coding works fine. The criterion for people who still have the “old style” citations didn’t work because it’s based on “does not contain” which doesn’t work when there is more than one citation for a person or a fact.

Well, I can search for people who have the “old style” citations now that I have run an SQLite script to add a $ sign to all the “old style” Master Source names. With the $ sign added, I can now search for “contains” instead of “does not contain” and the “contains” criterion works fine even when a person or fact has multiple citations.

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Is this because the * is a wildcard character? Would the same syntax work if you used # instead?

The wildcard character in RM is %

The problem isn’t because of the particular character. The problem is because the “does not contain” logic doesn’t really work when there are multiple citations.