[EpiData-list] Current development of Entry and Analysis - and a question

epidata-list at lists.umanitoba.ca epidata-list at lists.umanitoba.ca
Thu Jan 15 04:57:59 CST 2009

During recent months extensive work was done rewriting core parts of the
software to a unified form for Entry and Analysis regarding reading,
saving, exporting, importing and validating data in the internal
structures. All of this is not visible to the end-user, but remedies
some of the problems seen with different functioning of Entry and
Analysis. The strategy is to ensure unified modularity of the internal
structure instead of the "add lumps" principles which to some extend
have been used over the first five years of development.

At the same time known problems and deficiencies are fixed, e.g.:
a. In Analysis the graph and table dialogs cannot be resized
b. In Entry a clearer logic of creating data files and chks can be
implemented, and implementation of Good Clinical Practice principles.

As part of the core parts development a key highly technical decision
has to be taken:
One subtle aspect of earlier standards has been that integer variables
were treated in a different form depending on the 1-4 or 5 and larger.
Where integers of length 5 (#####) and larger actually were kept
internally in the software (Entry and Analysis) as float variables with
0 decimals. The reason for this rests in the old Epi6 format and memory
usage in the 1980'ies.
We have taken the decision that from next versions of Analysis and Entry
all will be built upon a common core system, where all integers (up to
14 in length) are treated as integers internally in the system. The
change will only have impact for users reading rec files in other
software than EpiData. All existing rec files will be read with no
changes. For exports and imports the software will adapt appropriately.
But users will have to use the most new versions for reading files
created after the change.

If anyone reject to this decision please discuss the consequences here
on the list.
Jens Lauritsen
Coordinator and initiator of EpiData Project

Jens Lauritsen
Coordinator and initiator of EpiData Project

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