From Word Processing to Database, computer miracle
by Cindy O'Hora
If you are a regular reader of my tips, you know that I close each one with a quote. Most of them are, in my humble opinion, perfectly related to the topic of the tip. Accomplishing this is harder than you might think.
I started collecting tips several years ago when I came across a text document on the web which had about 70 of them. I downloaded it and thoroughly enjoyed it. As I surfed here and there on the web, I came across more quotes and copy ... pasted them into this original quotes word processing document. I also added interesting quotes from cards, TV shows, and books I was reading. The end result of all this pasting was a 40 page document with about 22 quotes on each page. Egads!
Each time I wanted a quote I opened this document and used Find/Change to search for a keyword or just scrolled down the document looking for a "honey". After I used the quote in the site, I changed the style of the text in some way to remind me that I had already used it.
Lately, every time I opened the document I muttered to myself that it should have been a database. The idea of changing it over through the "miracle of copy... paste" didn't appeal to me. I knew that it would be a lengthy, tedious process.
I'm a goal driven person, so I finally quit procrastinating. I made the database for the quotes. In this case, I made a field for the quote, the author, the date I added it, and finally a check box to click when I had used it. I started to copy ... paste between the two documents.
About the 10th record I stopped. "This is a Mac computer and I'm pretty good at AppleWorks!" I cried. "There has to be an easier way." So I resolved to sleep on it. (For reasons I cannot explain, I solve many computer challenges in my sleep.)
Sure enough, I awoke the next day with the answer. It requires a multistep preparation and translation plan. But it sure beats the daylights out of days (if not weeks) of my earlier method. I need to paste the wp document in spreadsheet. Save it to DIF. Then insert the interim DIF document into the database.
Step 1: Preparation - Fix the returns
Step 2: Get thee to a Spreadsheet.
Step 3. Intermediate translation.
Step 4. Come on in.
I checked the number of records. I saw that I had inserted 650 quotes successfully!!! That, my friends, would have been entirely TOO MUCH copy ... pasting, even for me.
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