Re: represented textually - urk

Subject: Re: represented textually - urk
From: "Richard G. Combs" <richard -dot- combs -at- voyanttech -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- raycomm -dot- com>
Date: Fri, 23 Aug 2002 11:41:22 -0600

Jane Carnall wrote:

> The SME for a database project keeps saying that some data are
> textually". The phrase gets around 250 hits on Google, mostly on techie
> sites, and from context means "data in the form of text".
> I don't like the phrase (it looks like unnecessary jargon) and it doesn't
> seem to be in sufficiently common use outside database-maven circles that
> means I have to use it. (The documentation is not aimed at

I think you're right. It strikes me as either too much or too little
information, depending on the context and readers. I'd guess that he means
the data is _stored_ as another data type (e.g., int, real, bool), but is
converted to a string. Maybe it's an enum, so the db field contains an
integer, 2, which is converted to the string "eFOO_IS_BLUE" (or something
like that).

If so, and the audience aren't "database-mavens," they probably don't want
or need to know the details of implementation or the finer points of data
types, casting, enumeration, etc. (unless they need to know some of these
things to complete their tasks). Show them what they'll see, and they'll
recognize it as text. ;-)


Richard G. Combs
Senior Technical Writer
Voyant Technologies, Inc.
richardDOTcombs AT voyanttechDOTcom
rgcombs AT freeDASHmarketDOTnet

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