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STANDARDIZED OCCUPATION & INDUSTRY CODING

SOIC Manual

SOIC Manual Chapter 2. User's Reference Guide

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NOTE: This page is archived for historical purposes and is no longer being maintained or updated.

2.4 The File Menu

You can access the File pull down menu by selecting the File item on the menu bar. To access the File menu from the Data Entry Form, press ALT+ F or click on the File item with the mouse. A pull down menu appears:

SOIC Drop Down menu.  This image displays the File Menu.

The pull down menu gives you ten options. You can choose any of them by clicking on the one you want with the mouse. Alternatively, you can move to the option you want with DOWN ARROW (presuming you don't want the first option, which is already selected), and then choose the option with ENTER.

Top of Page     2.4.1 The New Option

Use the New option to open a new, empty table. If you are using the SOIC System for data entry, you will first want to open a table with the New option. If you are importing a text file into the SOIC System, use New to set the name of the table before you choose the Import option.

You can choose the New option by clicking on File and then New with the mouse or by pressing ALT+ F, n. Alternatively, you can click on the New Table button on the Button Bar, located below the menus. The New Table dialog box is displayed:

SOIC Open Table dialogue box.

On opening, the Table Name text entry field is selected, and the cursor is in the Table Name text entry box. Therefore, you can immediately begin typing in the name of the new table. The names of existing tables are given in the Table Names list box. Do not use one of the existing table names-the names are listed in this dialog box so you will know which names not to use. If you do use an existing table name, the program displays an error message:

SOIC Error Mesage Box.  Note the text description of the problem above the OK button.

You can only create SOIC System tables with the New option. You cannot use this option to create, say, a non SOIC Access table, or an Xbase file. When you are done, press ENTER or click on OK. To close the dialog box without taking action, press ESC or click on Cancel.

Top of Page     2.4.2 The Open Option

You can use the Open option to open an existing SOIC System table so that it appears on the Data Entry Form. Whenever you open a table, the currently open table is closed and saved. You can choose the Open option by clicking on File and then Open with the mouse or by pressing ALT+ F, o. Alternatively, you can click on the Open Table button on the Button Bar located immediately below the menus. When you choose the Open option, the program displays the Open Table dialog box:

SOIC Open Table dialogue box.

The text cursor is in the Table Name text entry box, so you can immediately begin typing in the name of the table that you want to open. When you are done, click on the OK button with the mouse or press ENTER. The dialog box closes and you return to the Data Entry Form. The table you have chosen is displayed.

Alternatively, you can choose a table name from the Table Names list box located immediately below the Table Name text entry field. If you click on one of the available names with the mouse, the name is highlighted and copied into the Table Name text entry box. You can then click on OK or press ENTER to return to the Data Entry Form.

If there are more table names than can be displayed in the Table Names list box at once, a scroll bar appears on the right hand side of the box. You can scroll down the list by clicking on the scroll bar with the mouse. Alternatively, you can move down the list using keyboard commands. First, move the focus to the list box with TAB or by clicking on a table name with the mouse. Then use PAGE DOWN or the arrow keys to move down the list until you have selected the appropriate table name. If you used TAB to move to the list box, you must use an ARROW key to highlight the appropriate name and copy it to the Table Name field. If you used the mouse, the names you scroll through are already highlighted, and you need only move the focus to the appropriate name.

For more detail on how to manipulate dialog boxes, see Section 2.1.6 "Dialog Boxes to Manage Files and Tables".

Untitled. You cannot open the untitled table that appears when you open the SOIC system. Therefore, if you place data in the untitled table and open another table, the data is effectively lost. Be sure to use the Save As option to save any information in the untitled table before you do anything that closes it, such as opening another table or exiting from the system. We describe the Save As option in Section 2.4.5.

References. In addition to opening an SOIC System table, you can also open a non-SOIC Access table or an Xbase file. We describe how to open such tables and files in the following sections. For more information on how the SOIC System handles its own tables, see Section 2.3 "How the SOIC System Manages Tables and Files" and Section 2.3.2 "How the SOIC System Handles its Own Tables".

Top of Page     2.4.2.1 Opening a Non-SOIC Access Table

To open a non-SOIC Access table, you must bring up the Open Access file management dialog box. This dialog box is available through the Open Table dialog box. With the mouse, click on the Data Source field. A list of data source types then appears. Access 2000 is the first type listed, after SOIC. Click on Access 2000, and the program displays the Open Access file management dialog box.

Alternatively, you could move the focus to the Data Source element with tab. When the name SOIC is highlighted, press DOWN ARROW once to bring up Access 2000. You can now press ENTER or click on OK to open the Open Access file management dialog box:

SOIC File Management dialogue box.

Access stores tables in database files that have the extension .mdb. Several tables can be stored in each file. Before you open a table, you must therefore choose the appropriate database file in which the table is stored.

Using the File Management Dialog Box. If the database file you are looking for is not in the displayed folder, you can use the controls in the file management dialog box to locate the file. The field labeled "Look in" at the top of the box contains a drop down list box. If you click on the DOWN ARROW symbol to the right of the box, a list appears that shows the entire folder structure available through your computer. If you wish to go "up" one level in the folder structure, you can click on the button located immediately to the right of the "Look in" field:

'Up' one level button icon.

To go "down" one level of the folder structure, double click on one of the folder icons displayed in the file list box that takes up most of the dialog box. In the case of the Open File dialogue box above, that could be either the folder named "1990" or the folder named "2000."

SOIC System Files. There are two database names in the file list box when you first open the Access file management dialog box. These two are SOIC System files, present whenever you run the SOIC System:

  • Userdata.mdb
  • TrashCan.mdb

TrashCan.mdb contains one table-TrashCan. This table is the SOIC System Trash Can. It is possible to open TrashCan as a non-SOIC Access table, but for safety's sake we recommend that you do not do this.

Userdata.mdb is the database that contains all SOIC System data tables. We do not recommend that you open this file, either. (In any event, if you try to open Userdata.mdb as an Access file while an internal SOIC table is displayed, you receive an error message.)

You may, however, want to open a file named Userdata.mdb that was created by another copy of the SOIC System, perhaps at another site. If you are handling such a file, be careful not to copy it into your active SOIC folder (usually C:\Program Files\SOIC20). You do not want to overwrite your own copy of Userdata.mdb! You may want to rename the foreign copy of Userdata.mdb using the Windows Explorer.

Because SOIC System data tables are by definition also Access tables, you can open the foreign copy of Userdata.mdb as an Access table. If you do so, however, your rights to edit and manipulate the table are restricted, just as they are when you open any non-SOIC Access table.

If the foreign copy of Userdata.mdb was created by the previous version of the SOIC System-version 1.3-it is not possible to immediately open the file as an external Access file. This is because SOIC version 1.3 used the Access version 2.0 file format. The current version of SOIC-version 1.5-uses the Access 2000 file format. The two formats are incompatible. To open a copy of Userdata.mdb created by SOIC version 1.3, first convert the Access 2.0 file into an Access 2000 file. You can do this from within the SOIC System. (See Section 2.8.5 "The Convert Access Database Option".)

Choosing a Table. When the Open Access file management dialog box is first displayed, the focus is on the File name text entry box at the bottom of the dialog box. This lets you immediately type in the name of one of the database files in the default folder. Alternatively, you can click on one of the file names in the file list box. Now press ENTER or click on the Open button. An Open Table dialog box appears. In the following example, we have opened a copy of Userdata.mdb created by another copy of the SOIC System:

SOIC Open table dialogue box.

To open a table, choose its name either with the mouse or by using tab and the ARROW keys. When you highlight a name in the Table Names list box, the name is copied into the Table Name text entry field.

You can also type the name directly into the text box. If you type the name of a file that does not exist into the box, the system displays an error message.

Mapping the Table. The next step is to press ENTER or click on OK. The program now displays another dialog box:

Field mapping dialogue box used to map fields in a file to fields in the SOIC system.

The Field Mapping dialog box allows you to open a table even if the field names, field lengths, or field positions do not match those of an internal SOIC data table. The mapping feature allows you to identify which fields in the external Access table match the fields in an SOIC data table. If the external Access table is formatted so that it already matches an SOIC table-and in this case, the table is so formatted-you can click on the Internal SOIC option with the mouse. You can find this option by clicking on the Options button. The figure below shows the options available by clicking on the Options button:

Field mapping dialogue box. If file being opened has SOIC structure, 'Internal SOIC' is used as the field mapping. Clear removes all current mappings. Previously saved field mappings may also be used.

Alternatively, you can move to the Options button with three TABs, highlight the Internal SOIC option with ENTER, DOWN ARROW, and then close the Options box with ENTER.

Now close the Field Mapping dialog box by clicking on OK or moving to OK with TAB and pressing ENTER. You return to the Data Entry Form, where the Access table is displayed.

How do you map the fields of an external table to the SOIC fields if you do not know that the table is already in the SOIC format? You do so by using the controls in the "tab cards" that take up most of the Field Mapping dialog box. When you first open the dialog box, the tab card Industry/Occupation is displayed. This tab card contains the four required fields, that is, the four fields that you must map to open the table. To map a field, click on the data entry field to the right of the field label. A drop down list box appears:

Field mapping dialogue box with drop down box.

(To open the list without using the mouse, move to the field you want with repeated use of TAB or SHIFT-TAB, then press ALT+DOWN ARROW.) The drop down list contains names of fields in the table you are trying to open. These names may or may not correspond to the names in an SOIC System table.

The program only shows names that are at least as large (have at least the same number of characters) as the SOIC field to which they are to be mapped. For example, if you open the Occupation Title list, only those fields in the external Access table that can have 40 or more characters are displayed. If you open the Occupation Code list, only those fields in the external Access table that can have three or more characters are displayed. If you must map a table that contains fields that are too short, you will have to open the table with Access and change the structure of the table to increase the size of the fields. You can find the minimum sizes of all SOIC System fields in Appendix B "SOIC System Data File Formats".

Use the mouse or DOWN ARROW to highlight the name of the field you want to map to the selected SOIC System field (in the case of the above image, Industry Code). If there are more fields in the Access file than can fit in the drop down list, a scroll bar appears on the right hand side of the list. You may need to use the scroll bar or PAGE DOWN to find the correct field to map. In the example above, the Access table actually is in the SOIC System data format, and the field we want is named "icode." You must scroll down the list box to find icode.

In addition to the four required fields that you must map, you can also map some or all of the other fields that appear on the SOIC Data Entry Form. You can find the controls to map these optional fields by clicking on the "tab card" controls at the top of the Field Mapping dialog box. (To change tab cards without using the mouse, move to the active tab card with repeated use of TAB or SHIFT+TAB, and then press LEFT ARROW or RIGHT ARROW.)

The required fields are on the Industry/Occupation tab card. You can also display the Identification, Personal Information, and General Information tab cards. You can map the optional fields in the same way you map the required fields.

When all four required fields are mapped, and when you have mapped as many of the optional fields as you want, click on OK or tab to the OK button and press ENTER to return to the Data Entry Form.

If you did not map any of the optional fields, those fields do not appear on the Data Entry Form. If any of the required fields are not mapped, an error message appears. If Internal SOIC Mapping is selected, and the program determines that the external table is not actually in the SOIC System format, an error message appears.

If you repeatedly open Access tables with the same structure, mapping that structure over and over again can become tedious. You can therefore save a mapping scheme that you use repeatedly. To save a scheme, click on the Save Mapping check box. The next time you open the Access Map Fields dialog box, you can retrieve the saved mapping scheme by selecting the Saved option, available by clicking on the Options button.

If you want to open a table using a mapping scheme that is different from both the Saved and the Internal SOIC schemes, the Clear option allows you to remove all assigned mappings and design a new scheme from scratch.

For more information on how the SOIC System handles Access tables, see Section 2.3.3 "How the SOIC System Handles Access Tables".

Top of Page     2.4.2.2 Opening an Xbase File

Opening an Xbase file is quite similar to opening an Access table. Because Xbase programs such as FoxPro and dBASE store each table in its own file, opening an Xbase file is slightly simpler than opening an Access table. First, display the Open Table dialog box. Then move the focus to the Data Source drop down list. Choose one of the four types of Xbase files, depending on which program created the file: FoxPro 2.0, FoxPro 2.5, dBASE III, or dBASE IV. If the application was created by an Xbase program other than these four, use the dBASE III setting. (The SOIC System is quite forgiving if you use an incorrect Xbase file setting. It is a good practice, however, to use the correct setting-we cannot guarantee the results if you do not.)

An Xbase file management dialog box then opens. All of the Xbase boxes look the same, except for the name in the "Files of type" field:

SOIC File dialogue box.

If the file you are looking for is not in the default folder, you can use the file management dialog box controls to locate the file. To open an Xbase file, highlight the name of the file in the Files list box. This copies the name into the File Name text entry field. Alternatively, you can type a name directly into the File Name text entry box. Then press ENTER or click on OK. If you enter the name of a file that does not exist, the system displays an error message. If the file name is valid, the Map Fields dialog box appears. This is essentially the same dialog box that appears after the Open Access Table dialog box.

For an explanation of how to map Xbase files, see the previous section's explanation of how to map fields from an external table to SOIC internal fields.

If the external Xbase file has the same format as an internal SOIC data table, you can click on the Internal SOIC option, which you can locate by clicking on the Options button. When you are done, click on OK. You return to the Data Entry Form with the Xbase file displayed.

If you are creating a new mapping scheme, the program only shows field names from the Xbase file that are at least as large (have at least the same number of characters) as the SOIC field to which they are to be mapped. For example, if you open the Occupation Title drop down list, only those fields in the Xbase file that have 40 or more characters are displayed. If you open the Occupation Code list, only those fields in the Xbase file that have three or more characters are displayed. If you must map a table that contains fields that are too short, you will have to open the table with FoxPro or dBase and change the structure of the table to increase the size of the fields. You can find the minimum sizes of all SOIC System fields in Appendix B "SOIC System Data File Formats". All four required fields (Occupation Title and Code, Industry Title and Code) must be mapped.

For more information on how the SOIC System handles Xbase files, see Section 2.3.4 "How the SOIC System Handles Xbase Files".

Top of Page     2.4.3 The Close Option

The close option closes the current table and opens the "untitled" table in the userdata.mdb database. If the current table has not been saved it will prompt you if you want to save the table.

Top of Page     2.4.4 The Save Option

The Save option groups together three "sub options." You can choose the Save option by clicking on File and then Save with the mouse, or by pressing ALT+ F, S. When you do so, the following submenu opens:

SOIC Drop down menus.  File menu with Save options dsiplayed.

Click on the sub option that you want with the mouse, or highlight the option with the ARROW keys and press ENTER.

You cannot use the Save option when the "untitled" table is open. (Untitled appears whenever you open the SOIC System.) This is because the three Save sub options close the open table, and open a new one. You cannot re-open "untitled," so if you place data in the untitled table and open another table, the data is effectively lost. Be sure to use the Save As option to save any information in the untitled table before you do anything that closes it, such as opening another table or exiting from the system. We describe the Save As option in Section 2.4.5 .

Top of Page     2.4.4.1 Save Coded

The Save Coded option opens the Save Coded table management dialog box. This dialog box can be used to save the coded records in the currently open table to a new table. Only the coded records are saved. You can use this option together with the Save Uncoded option to create two new tables containing the coded and uncoded records from a given data set. This allows you to give special attention to either group of records. The option is not available if a non SOIC Access table or an Xbase file is open. The Save Coded dialog box looks exactly like the Save As dialog box, except for the title. As with the Save As option, you can save the table as an SOIC System data table or as an Access table, but not as an Xbase file.

If you choose a table name that is already in use, the program displays a message box containing the options Append, Replace, and Cancel. For more on this message box, see Section 2.4.5 "The Save As Option".

If you use the Save Coded and Save Uncoded options together to create two tables with complementary data sets, you can use the Save As option to put the two data sets back together in a single table. Open one of your two partial tables. Then choose the Save As option. In the Table Name text entry field, enter the name of the other of the two tables as the table name to which you want to save. The program displays a message box that asks whether you want to append, replace, or cancel. Choose append. The program then writes all the records in the currently open table to the end of the other table. The file management dialog box closes, and the other table-now containing the records from both tables-is displayed on the Data Entry Form.

For more information on how this and other dialog boxes work, see Section 2.1.6 "Dialog Boxes to Manage Files and Tables".

Top of Page     2.4.4.2 Save Uncoded

The Save Uncoded option opens the Save Uncoded table management dialog box. This dialog box can be used to save the uncoded records in the currently open table to a new table. Only the uncoded records are saved. You can use this option together with the Save Coded option to create two new tables containing the coded and uncoded records from a given data set. This allows you to give special attention to either group of records.

The option is not available if a non-SOIC Access table or an Xbase file is open. The dialog box looks exactly like the Save As dialog box, except for the title. As with the Save As option, you can save the table as an SOIC System data table or as an Access table, but not as an Xbase file.

If you choose a table name that is already in use, the program displays a message box containing the options Append, Replace, and Cancel. For more on this message box, see Section 2.4.5 "The Save As Option".

If you use the Save Coded and Save Uncoded options together to create two tables with complementary data sets, you can use the Save As option to put the two data sets back together in a single table. For details on how to do this, see the previous section.

For more information on how this and other file management dialog boxes work, see Section 2.1.6 "Dialog Boxes to Manage Files and Tables".

Top of Page     2.4.4.3 Save 998 Codes

The Save 998 Codes option opens the Save 998 Codes table management dialog box. This dialog box can be used to save the records coded as 998 in the currently open table to a new table. Only records coded as 998 for either industry or occupation are saved. For more information on 998 codes see Appendix C "The 998 Insufficient Information Code".

The option is not available if a non-SOIC Access table or an Xbase file is open. The Save 998 Codes dialog box looks exactly like the Save As dialog box, except for the title. As with the Save As option, you can save the table as an SOIC System data table or as an Access table, but not as an Xbase file.

If you choose a table name that is already in use, the program displays a message box containing the options Append, Replace, and Cancel. For more on this message box, see Section 2.4.5 "The Save As Option".

For more information on how this and other file management dialog boxes work, see Section 2.1.6 "Dialog Boxes to Manage Files and Tables".

Top of Page     2.4.5 The Save As Option

The SOIC System saves your data continuously as you work. Each record is saved the instant you move to another record in any way, or close the table. Even if your system suffers an abrupt power loss, you should be able to retrieve all data except for the record on which you were actually working. The SOIC "Save As" feature exists primarily to create copies of tables under new names.

When you use the Save As dialog boxes to save the currently open table under a new name, you close and save the table, and open the copy with the new name. The table or file you closed will continue to contain all the data that existed before you saved it. (The exception to this rule is the table "untitled," which is opened when you start the SOIC System. The untitled table is emptied when you exit.)

You can choose the Save As option by clicking on File and then Save As with the mouse or by pressing ALT+ F, s. Alternatively, you can click on the Save Table As button on the Button Bar located immediately under the menus.

The dialog box that opens when you choose the Save As option depends on what kind of table or file is active when you choose the option. If an SOIC or Access table is open, a Save As table management dialog box opens. The Save As dialog box looks exactly like the Open dialog box, except for the title:

SOIC Table dialog box used for saving tables.

Another difference is that in the Save As dialog box, the Data Source drop down list only contains the items SOIC and Access 2000.

If an Xbase file is open, an Open Xbase file management dialog box opens.

When the Save As table management dialog box opens, the text cursor is in the Table Name text entry box, so you can immediately begin typing in a new table name. You can also type in an existing table name, or select the name of an existing table from the Table Names list box. If you select the name of an existing table, and press ENTER or click on OK, a message box appears:

SOIC Message box.  This file already exists!  Click Replace to replace the existing table or Cancel so you can enter another table name.

Cancel is the default, and is highlighted. If you press ENTER or click on Cancel, the box closes and you can try another table name. If you want to replace the existing table with a new one, click on Replace or press tab, ENTER.

Note that the SOIC System does not allow you to save an SOIC or Access table under its own name. You must pick a different name, or you will see an error message. (There is no need to save a table under its own name, because the program automatically saves the active record in the active table every time you move to a new record or exit from the program.)

How Mapping An Access Table Affects the Save As Option. If your Access table is mapped using the internal SOIC mapping scheme, all fields in the Access table are mapped. Saving such a table using the Save As option saves all fields and all information in the fields.

If you have only mapped some of the fields in the Access table, however, saving the table with the Save As option can lead to a loss of information. Save As only saves data in fields that have been mapped. The saved table contains all fields in the SOIC System Data File Format (see Appendix B), but all fields that were not mapped are blank. Only the mapped fields contain data.

If you intend to save a non-SOIC Access table using Save As, therefore, you should first map all fields that contain any data you want to preserve.

Exporting and Importing Access Tables. Because SOIC System data tables are a species of Access table, you can use the Save As dialog box to transfer an SOIC System data table to a database other than Userdata.mdb. Use the Data Source control to open an Access 2000 file management dialog box, and then choose an Access .MDB file. When the Access 2000 Open Table dialog box is displayed, enter a table name to save the active SOIC table, and click on OK or press ENTER. Note that the Data Entry Form continues to display the SOIC System version of the table you just saved-not the Access version. If you want to open the Access version, you must use the Open option to open the new table.

It is also possible to turn an external Access table into an SOIC System data table-to import that table, in effect. This is useful because at some point you may want to import tables created by another copy of the SOIC System, at another site. You should only import Access tables if you know that they are already in the standard SOIC System data format. If you attempt to import a non conforming table, the system will report that the table is incorrectly formatted when you try to open it through the Open Table dialog box.

To import an Access table, first open it as an Access table. (See the previous section for details on the Open option.) In the Field Mapping dialog box, select the Internal SOIC mapping option. When the Access table is displayed on the Data Entry Form, use the Save As option to save it to the database Userdata.mdb. The table displayed on the Data Entry Form is the new SOIC table-options such as Save, Import, Export, and Sort are now available through the menu system.

Xbase Files. It is not possible to save an open Xbase file as an SOIC table. If you want to import an Xbase file into Userdata.mdb, use FoxPro or dBase to save the file as a text file, and then use the SOIC Import option to bring it into the system.

It is possible to save an open Xbase file under the same file name, overwriting the old file.

Top of Page     2.4.6 The Delete Option

The Delete option allows you to permanently delete an SOIC System data table. You can choose the Delete option by clicking on File and then Delete with the mouse, or by pressing ALT+ F, d. The Delete Table dialog box then opens:

SOIC Table dialogue box.

The text cursor is in the Table Name text entry box, so you can immediately begin typing in the name of the table you want to delete. Alternatively, you can choose a table name from the names displayed in the Table Names list box. When you are done entering the table name, press ENTER or click on OK. A message box appears, asking you to confirm your deletion. You cannot delete the currently open table. If you try to do so, the program displays an error message.

Once a table is deleted, it cannot be recovered. Obviously, the Delete option can be very dangerous. Use it with care. You may want to back up the file Userdata.mdb before performing any deletions. An alternate plan would be to save important tables to an Access database located on a floppy disk.

If you use floppy diskettes for backup, consider that Userdata.mdb will in many cases be too large to fit on a single diskette. You will therefore need to back up Userdata.mdb using software that can place a single file on multiple diskettes. Software written to back up or condense files, such as Microsoft Backup or Winzip, can do this. Simple file copying using Windows Explorer cannot place one file on multiple diskettes.

Top of Page     2.4.7 The Import Option

You can use the Import Text File dialog box to translate an existing data file from a text format to the format used by the SOIC System. After it is translated, the imported data is appended to whichever table is currently open. Therefore, you should not use the Import option when the currently open table contains records that you want to preserve as a separate table. Before importing, first close such a table and use the New option to create a new, empty table. For more on the New option, see Section 2.4.1 "The New Option".

You can choose the Import option by clicking on File and then Import with the mouse, or by pressing ALT+ F, I. Alternatively, you can click on the Import button on the Button Bar, located immediately below the menus.

The Import Text File dialog box is a generic Windows file management dialog box, and looks much like the Open Xbase File dialog box, except for the title and the contents of the Files of Type field:

SOIC File dialogue box for importing files.

To be imported into the SOIC System successfully, a text file must have a format that the SOIC System can understand. The SOIC System expects a text file in which each record consists of a single line, ending with a carriage return. The individual fields of each record are in a "columnar" format. That is, each field is identified by its location on the record line, in spaces. For example, the first field, Local ID, may take up spaces 1 through 4 of the line. The second field, Temporary ID, may take up spaces 5 through 10. Autopsy may be in space 211.

As we will explain shortly, text files do not need to have fields in any particular order, and fields may vary in length from one file to another. The exact location of the fields within the columnar format, in other words, can vary. The files must be formatted in a columnar format, however-the SOIC System cannot import data from a text file when the fields vary in length from one record to another, or are delimited by characters such as the tab symbol or commas. For a complete description of the SOIC System standard text file format, see Appendix B "The SOIC System Data File Formats".

You can begin importing a text file from the currently active folder by typing the name of the file in the File Name field. You can also choose a file name from the File Names list box. When you have entered the file name, press ENTER or click on the OK button.

If you type in the name of a file that does not exist, Windows displays an error message. If the text file name you specified does exist, the SOIC System displays a new dialog box:

SOIC Import Field mapping box used to map files in a text file to SOIC fields.

The Import Mapping dialog box allows you to import text files even when the text files are not in the SOIC standard text file format. This dialog box allows you to specify the location of each field in the text file from which you plan to import.

When the SOIC System is first installed, the fields displayed in the Fields For Import list box on the right hand side of the dialog box are the fields of a standard SOIC text file. (This can be changed by the user, as we explain below.) If you know that the text file from which you are importing is in the standard format, you can simply press ENTER or click on OK. You are then returned to the Data Entry Form, where the data from the text file is appended to the open SOIC data file.

If you know that the text file has a field structure different from that of the standard format, you can use the controls in the Import Mapping dialog box to describe the text file.

First, highlight a field name by clicking on it with the mouse, or by using TAB and the ARROW keys. The name appears in the Field Name display box, located below the Fields For Import list. (You cannot edit the Field Name display box, but it does serve to remind you which field is selected.) You can now use the Size text entry box to change the number of characters in the field. You can type a new number into the text box, or use the up and down controls at the right hand side of the box to change the number. You cannot make the number of characters in a field greater than the number of characters allowed in the SOIC standard text file format.

You can use the Remove button to move fields to the Fields Not For Import list box. If your text file does not contain some of the fields that the SOIC System supports, you must move these fields to the Fields Not For Import list box before the import actually takes place.

The Fields Not For Import list box is also highly useful if the fields in the text file are not in the same order as the fields in the SOIC standard format. You can change the order of fields by moving some or all of them to the Fields Not For Import list, and then moving them back to the Fields For Import list. Probably the simplest way of changing the order of fields is to use the Remove All button to move all the fields to the Fields Not For Import list. You can then move them back to the Fields For Import list one by one, in the desired order. To move a field name from one list to the other, first highlight the name, and then click on the Add or the Remove button.

There are quicker, if more complicated, ways to move names from one list to the other-you can move field names in groups. Highlight one name, and then hold down CTRL while you click on additional names. This allows you to select multiple names regardless of whether they follow each other on the list. You can highlight one name and hold down shift while you click on another name. This highlights both names and every name in between.

If one or more names on Fields For Import are highlighted when you move new names onto the list from Fields Not For Import, the new names are inserted immediately after the last highlighted name. If no names are highlighted on Fields to Import, the new names go to the end of the list. You can change where the new names go by clicking on the "Insert Before" radio button. With this button selected, new names are added before the highlighted names in the list, rather than after. If the Insert Before radio button has already been selected, you can make new names go after highlighted names by selecting Insert After.

The Fields For Import list automatically begins each field immediately after the field before it. As you change the size of fields, or their order, the starting location of each field is automatically adjusted. You can see where each field begins by looking at the "Start" column in the Fields For Import list box.

Say the text file allows 20 characters for Father's Surname. The SOIC System allows only 19 for this field, so the next field after Father's Surname may begin one character too early. What should you do? The answer: leave the width of Father's Surname set at 19, but pad the list by putting the <blank> field name between Father's Surname and the following field. The <blank> field name is located in the Fields Not For Import list box. The <blank> field is always one character wide when it is copied to the Fields For Import list, but afterwards you can edit the width.

You can add an unlimited number of copies of <blank> to the Fields For Import list box-unlike the real file names, <blank> is not deleted from the Fields Not For Import list when you add it to the Fields For Import list. The <blank> field name can also be used to replace a field in the text file that does not have an SOIC System equivalent, and therefore cannot be imported.

Changing the order of field names quickly using the two list boxes can seem a little like a game! Fortunately, there are a near infinite number of possible solutions, and you will quickly find one that works well for you. Just remember the object of the exercise: you want to describe the text file from which you are importing in such a way that the SOIC System can understand its contents. If First Name, for example, is the very first field in the text file from which you are importing, it must be the first field in Fields For Import, and begin in column 1. If the field Date of Death begins in column 100 in the text file, it must be listed as beginning in column 100 in the Fields For Import list box.

The imported data must contain the four core fields: Occupation Title, Occupation Code, Industry Title, and Industry Code. These fields may be empty, but they must exist.

Because import mapping can be complicated, and because you may want to repeatedly import files that have identical structures, the Import Mapping dialog box contains a check box that allows you to save the mapping scheme you have designed. To save your scheme, click on the Save Mapping check box with the mouse. Alternatively, move to the check box with tab and press space bar.

The next time you open the Import Mapping dialog box, your mapping scheme is displayed in the Fields For Import list box instead of the SOIC default scheme. If you do not need to modify your saved scheme, you can proceed by clicking on OK or pressing ENTER.

The Options button allows you to retrieve the standard SOIC text file format (System Defaults) if the user defined scheme is currently displayed in the Fields For Import list box. You can switch to the saved, user defined scheme (Saved Format) if the standard SOIC format is currently displayed. Having both options can be useful if some of the files you import are in the standard format and others are in the non standard format that you have saved. System Defaults can also be used during the design of a mapping scheme if you do not like what you have come up with, and want to start over.

The Test button allows you to examine the appearance of a mapping scheme. A box similar to the following example appears:

Display of results when import field mappings are tested.

The Import Test box allows you to see how the data from the first record of the text file will be organized when the import process is complete. If any field from the text file appears to be broken up-that is, distributed across two or more of the cells in the Value column-your mapping scheme will have to be revised. If all cells in the Value column appear to contain reasonable values, you can now proceed to finish the import.

Return to the Import Mapping dialog box and click on OK or press ENTER. If everything has gone right, and the data in the text file is imported successfully, the dialog box closes and you return to the Data Entry Form. The data you have imported is visible, and the name of the file you imported the data into is displayed above the form.

Top of Page     2.4.8 The Export Option

The Export option allows you to save the table you are working on as a text file. It can then be imported into other software programs for further processing. You may want to manipulate a text file using a database management system or a spreadsheet. You can also edit such a file with a word processing program if you want to make use of the word processor's extensive formatting capabilities.

You can choose the Export option by clicking on File and then Export with the mouse, or by pressing ALT+ F, E. Alternatively, you can click on the Export button on the Button Bar, which is located immediately below the menus. When you do so, the program opens the Export Text File dialog box, which looks exactly like the Import Text File dialog box except for the title. This dialog box allows you to choose a name for the file to which you are exporting. The standard extension for text files is .TXT, but you are not limited to using this extension. If you choose an existing file name, a message box asks you if you want to replace the file or cancel.

When you enter a file name and press ENTER or click on OK, the Export Mapping dialog box opens. This dialog box is almost identical to the Import Mapping dialog box - the title of the box is different, and there is no Test option.

If you want your exported text file to have the standard SOIC text file format, you can simply press ENTER or click on OK, and the export will proceed. For a complete description of the SOIC System standard text file format, see Appendix B "SOIC System Data File Formats". Note that a number of fields at the end of an SOIC internal data table are not displayed on the Data Entry Form and are not exported. These fields are used by the SOIC System itself to administer its tables.

If you want to export a text file that has a structure different from the standard SOIC text file format, you can use the controls in the Export Mapping dialog box to establish the structure of the exported file. These controls operate in the same way as the controls in the Import Mapping dialog box, described in the previous section.

As with the Import Mapping dialog box, you can save a frequently used mapping scheme for later reuse. If you do so, your saved scheme will appear whenever you open the Export Mapping dialog box. You can then choose between the saved scheme and the standard SOIC scheme.

Top of Page     2.4.9 The Print Option

The SOIC System Print option allows you to print selected fields from the data table displayed in the Data Entry Form. The Print option does not allow you to print all of the fields in the records-it can only print the ID fields and the core coding fields. You can print all records, just coded records, just uncoded records, or just records assigned a code of 998. If you choose to print records coded as 998, SOIC will print all records assigned this code for either industry or occupation. (For an explanation of 998 codes, see Appendix C "The 998 Insufficient Information Code".)

You can choose the Print option by clicking on File and then Print with the mouse or by pressing ALT+ F, P. Alternatively, you can click on the Print button on the Button Bar located immediately under the menus. Choosing the Print option brings up the following dialog box:

SOIC Print options.

You can choose the fields you want to print with the check boxes in the center column of the dialog box. You can choose which records to print with the radio buttons in the left most column in the box. The records print to the default Windows printer. If you have more than one available printer, you can change printers with the Advanced button:

Windows print box. This may look different on your computer.

The Print Setup dialog box, shown above, also allows you to change the paper size and source, and to switch between portrait and landscape output. Depending on your printer, a Properties button may provide additional advanced printer control settings.

The Fonts button in the Print Records dialog box opens the Font dialog box. This box allows you to change the font and point size of your print out:

Windows font selection  box. This may look different on your computer.

There are ways to print an SOIC table if the options available through the SOIC Print option are not sufficient to provide the results you need. If you want to print all fields in the records, or format your print job, you can export the table to a text file and manipulate the file with a word processing program. Alternatively, if you have Microsoft Access, you can open the table (or more safely-a copy of the table) directly and print it using Access's form design capabilities.

Top of Page     2.4.10 The Exit Option

The Exit option allows you to leave the SOIC System. On leaving, you return to Microsoft Windows. You can choose the Exit option by clicking on File and then Exit with the mouse, by pressing ALT+F4, or by pressing ALT+ F, X.

When you start the SOIC System, the program will open the "untitled" table from Userdata.mdb on start up. Remember that the untitled table is always emptied when you leave the SOIC System. If you have entered any data into the untitled table and you wish to save your data, you must save the table under another name before exiting. For details on the Save As command, see Section 2.4.5 "The Save As Option".

 
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