Re: AFA-OBJECT Author information

Alan Emtage <bajan@bunyip.com> Sun, 08 May 1994 01:01 UTC

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Date: Sat, 07 May 1994 20:28:32 -0400
To: Markus Stumpf <stumpf@informatik.tu-muenchen.de>, iafa@bunyip.com
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From: Alan Emtage <bajan@bunyip.com>
Subject: Re: AFA-OBJECT Author information
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Hi Markus,

At 03:04 AM 5/4/94 +0200, Markus Stumpf wrote:
>The latest draft states for AFA Objects:
>
>Author-(USER*):		[ ... ] repeated as often as is necessary.
>
>Shouldn't this get a -v* at the end?
>As the draft doesn't specify a certain order for the fields
>(except Template-Type: must be the first one (true?)) it would
>otherwise be hard to group them correctly.

Well, what the draft is saying is that for _any one object_ the 
Author-(USER*) fields can be repeated as often as necessary. So for example, 
you would have:

Template-Type: SOUND
Title: Southern Cross
Author: Crosby
Author: Stills
Author: Nash

It's the same song although it has several authors (and that example really 
dates me :-).

In any case, if we had a Spanish version of the song then we would perhaps 
need to list it as variant but in most cases the Authors would remain the 
same. The problem comes with associating information of particular authors 
with say, their home addresses. So if we had

Template-Type: SOUND
Title: Southern Cross
Author: Crosby
Author-Home-Phone: +1 800 555 1212
Author: Stills
Author-Home-Phone: +1 415 234 5678
Author: Nash

Now we have a potential problem. Which home phone number belongs to which 
Author? My only solution is to put an ordering. In cases like this when *you 
are dealing with the same object* and you have repeated fields that have to 
be associated, positional association is the only thing that I can see 
working. So, in the example above, since we have an Author-Home-Phone we 
associate it with the last Author-Name previous to it. 

Now, we have to be very careful how we specify this. Take this example:

Template-Type: SOUND
Title: Southern Cross
Author-Home-Phone: +1 800 555 1212
Author: Crosby
Author: Stills
Author-Home-Phone: +1 415 234 5678
Author: Nash


Since we have not made the "Author-Name" special signficance, what does line 
#3 associate with? You'd probably guess line #4 but since we haven't defined 
an author can we be sure that it is to associate with "Crosby" ?

I suggest the following. For the "clusters" we define that the -Name field 
must be first within the cluster to disambiguate the above.

Any thoughts?

-Alan

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Alan Emtage,                                 "In Canada the Left is more
Bunyip Information Systems                    Gauche than Sinister"
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