Friday, December 30, 2005


In the original plan, Validation was the third and final stage. However, it is in fact the penultimate stage and is followed by post-validation. This note covers both.

When a corrected zip arrives back, I load it into Valdrev, and run it against the images. Unlike checking, I do not have to view every line, but only those on which Valdrev stops.

Valdrev stops for:

1. Alerts, either inserted by the checker, or inserted by the transcriber and not resolved by the checker.

2. Records that have notes left by the transcriber or the checker, but not those contained in the transcriber’s Mynotes file. I do not see those, although Valdrev does stop.

3. County or place of birth names that do not exist as far as the geographical database GENIE is concerned.

From this you can see that if the transcriber leaves lots of notes, I get lots of stops. During validation I edit the notes left by transcribers. Usually, I delete them, but sometimes I retain them, edit them or add to them or insert new ones – as the fancy takes me! If Chapman codes for the Irish or Scottish counties have not been used, I get stops on all those. In the original plan, it was thought that the validation process would be pretty quick, with stops every hundred or so records. Like many things, this didn’t work out and stops are only too frequent.

The main problem is that the geographical database GENIE is limited in size and it doesn’t hold many perfectly good place names. In general, I pass all place names that are “as is”. I do not avail myself of the validater’s option to put in the modern or corrected names.

At the end of this process, I pack for uploading; in theory, this output file could be uploaded. But in practice, we know that there are a lot of errors still in the file, invisible during validation. The file is, therefore, loaded into FCTools. This is a diagnostic tool that identifies errors and gives warnings of possible problems.

FCTools produces a list of errors and a spreadsheet. As well as making the corrections indicated by FCTools, the opportunity its taken to “eyeball” the spreadsheet. It is surprising how many minor errors jump out and hit you in the eye! Once it as good as it can be, two files are produced. The validation file is uploaded to the Online DataBase (OLDB) and to the Mormon’s Great Granite Cave in Utah. The html file is sent to our web site.

No comments: