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    Topic:   Ignore asterisk when searching on name fields  

    This topic contains 4 replies, has 2 voices, and was last updated by kiwi kiwi 1 year, 4 months ago.

    Viewing 5 posts - 1 through 5 (of 5 total)
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    • #5642
      macalter
      macalter
      Participant

      534 posts

      This topic was on webtrees and because I’m now looking at my tree, have question too.
      I’m doing some major work which requires me looking at the raw GEDCOM (not editing) which made me question if the asterisk I used beside the primary name should be removed? I’ve had them in place from way, way back as I read this is how you did this.
      Never gave thought to searching.

      Should I be changing to quotes?

      1 NAME John* William /DOE/
      2 GIVN John* William
      2 SURN DOE

      to
      1 NAME “John” William /DOE/
      2 GIVN “John” William
      2 SURN DOE

      to facilitate searching? I just tried and the underline doesn’t show, just the quotes.

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      [updated: 22 May 2017]

      #5643
      kiwi
      kiwi
      Keymaster

      1431 posts

      Should I be changing to quotes?

      Short answer: no, definitely not.

      The searching issue the webtrees user raised is simply due to his incorrect use of the asterisk. He was putting it in the middle of a name (Phil*lip) to indicate the nickname “Phil”. That is wrong, and yes it will make searching hard.

      There is also confusion, I think, over what constitutes a nickname, and the purpose of the asterisk vs quotes. They are not alternatives for the same purpose. They are quite different.

      The asterisk defines the name a person is “usually known by”. It should be placed at the end of that name. My own mother is a good example. Her birth was registered as Barbara Joyce /Osborne/. But throughout her life she was called Joyce. So I have noted this by entering it as Barbara Joyce* /Osborne/. This results in a display like Barbara Joyce Osborne.
      Joyce in this case is not a nickname.

      A nickname is an alternative name, usually either something completely different to any given names, or an abbreviation of one. So “Fred” might be a nickname for Frederick, or “chubby” might be the nickname of a “larger” individual. These can be entered in GEDCOM in either of two ways:
      1 – add the nickname with quotes round it (Frederick “Fred” /Smith/)
      2 – use the NICK tag
      1 NAME Frederick /Smith/
      2 GIVN Frederick
      2 SURN Smith
      2 NICK Fred
      In both the options the main name display will by Frederick “Fred” Smith.
      But only by using NICK will you also see the separate information “Nickname : Fred” as well.

      My (personal) preference is to only use the NICK tag for nicknames. I think it is easier to use, and easier for readers to understand.

      But most importantly don’t confuse the asterisk and the quotes. They are not for the same purpose.

      Nigel

      My personal kiwitrees site is www.our-families.info

      #5644
      macalter
      macalter
      Participant

      534 posts

      I do keep the two distinctions. Use asterisk for designated (preferred) first name, placed at end of the name and use quotes for nicknames or derivatives of name (Elizabeth “Betty” Smith). Just that the posting raised question if I had been doing this correctly.

      Your reply indicates I didn’t quite understand the webtrees poster and that my use is okay. Whew! Couldn’t imagine editing all those names 🙂

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      Kiwitrees:
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      PHP 5.6.29 Fast CGI

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      Browsers (mac): Safari  Version 10.1.1 (11603.2.5);  Firefox 53.0.2
      [updated: 22 May 2017]

      #5645
      kiwi
      kiwi
      Keymaster

      1431 posts

      I just noticed your example

      1 NAME John* William /DOE/
      2 GIVN John* William
      2 SURN DOE

      Perhaps this is just an example, but I would never bother with the asterisk if the “usually known by” name is the first given name. That is the normal use of the name, so needs no additional emphasis, in my opinion. I only emphasize where it is not the normally expected use.

      I apply the same logic to, for example, the use of the PEDI sub tag to indicate “birth” name (2 PEDI birth). I think everyone reading the page will assume it is the birth name unless told otherwise, so no emphasis required.
      “2 PEDI adopted” is good and useful, “2 PEDI birth” is neither and just clutters the display unnecessarily.

      Nigel

      My personal kiwitrees site is www.our-families.info

      #5646
      kiwi
      kiwi
      Keymaster

      1431 posts

      and use quotes for nicknames or derivatives of name (Elizabeth “Betty” Smith)

      Great. But just to reiterate one point, you don’t need to add the quotes. Simply entering the nickname in the available nickname field will produce the same result for you, with the additional benefit of displaying “Nickname: Betty” in the name display area.

      Nigel

      My personal kiwitrees site is www.our-families.info

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