HC to Rev conversion

Paul Looney support at ahsomme.com
Wed Dec 31 13:08:16 EST 2008


Good morning Dale,
Two days ago I wrote with bad news (you would not be able to convert  
your HC database to Rev and keep the stack metaphor). Today I may  
have better news.
First let me say I'm with you regarding SQL. I regard it as a near  
Medieval form of torture - the exact opposite of everything one loves  
about HC!
But I don't believe you will need SQL. You probably don't need Rev  
either (perhaps a dangerous statement on a "use-revolution" list).
I've looked at your website to get an idea of the data you are  
storing. And I've looked at the code in the HyperSearch stack you  
posted. Please correct me if I'm wrong, but it appears that, while  
the volume of your data is significant, you are not manipulating it  
extensively; there are no calculations (like one does with invoices)  
or date math (like calendars and contact lists). It exists to find  
files based on text strings they contains (or, in English: it helps  
you find and read a document and that contains the words you want).
When you created the HC stack system there was no fast, easy, way of  
doing this.
Today, if you are using a Mac (and, as a HyperCarder, you probably  
are), you can do your searches with Spotlight (OS X 10.4, "Tiger", or  
later). Spotlight indexes your entire HD (takes about an hour the  
first time, then transparently keeps the index uptodate). Enter any  
text in the little Spotlight window and it will give you a list of  
all the files that contain that text, click on any file in the list  
to open it.
You would not need to convert the files to HC, Rev, HTML, or anything  
else. Spotlight recognizes most text formats - even reads text on  
maps in PDF!
You could keep your current organization - except: what are now  
stacks would be folders (with the same name you now use for the  
stack) and the HC/Rev cards would simply be files in the folder.
Because you would not need to convert new information to HC/Rev/or  
anything else, this system would be very easy to maintain (just put  
new files in the proper folder). Because it is entirely text-based  
(instead of a proprietary format like an HC or Rev stack) it should  
be  durable - text will probably be readable by text readers for  
another century.
On a modern Mac you would surely find searches with Spotlight to be  
at least as fast as you are getting now.
I think Jan Schenkel has copyrighted this phrase but it fits and I'll  
use it anyway "Hope this helps."
Paul Looney
PS Looks like you are going to have a sunny afternoon.

On Dec 31, 2008, at 5:30 AM, Dale Pond wrote:

> Thank you Paul, Jerry, Joe and Bill for your comments, suggestions  
> and critique of this conversion issue.
> I find it all informative and thought provoking. I did look into  
> SQL a few times and each time I was discouraged because of its lack  
> of intuitive GUI and my pretty much non-existent programming  
> skills. SQL is not an option for me and I do not think what I need  
> from my data warrants going that route.
>
> Over the past many months I have converted all 220+ stacks to Rev.  
> A few scripts have been tweaked to work as required. What is left  
> to do is do the FIND command upon a list of stacks and bring back  
> the lines found. Perhaps if I continue to think this through one  
> day I can get it working insofar as I need it to work. After all I  
> do have all the elements (excepting a fine insight into Rev  
> scripting) to make this happen.
>
>
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