Re: Warning that there are revisions in a document? (was: Re: some explanations about revisions and related stuff)

From: Ruth A. Kramer (
Date: Mon Dec 15 2003 - 04:26:49 EST

  • Next message: Leonard Rosenthol: "Re: some explanations about revisions and related stuff"

    Somebody wrote (sorry, lost the attribution (it wasn't in the email I'm
    replying to):
    > > > > 2. Message in the Save/Save-as dialogs. A friendly way to display this
    > > > > is in the form of radiobutton options - "Save with revision
    > > > > information"/"Save without revision information", with default value
    > > > > being the document's current status of revision information.

    False start, but maybe relevant to considering the entire issue:

    I guess I'm somewhat confused. I can imagine three cases:

       * the document hasn't been revised (so no revision information
    exists, so no information to save)
       * the document has been revised and:
          * the revisions have been accepted, so, IIUC, no revision
    information exists
          * the revisions have not been accepted, but have been reviewed and
    rejected, most likely the document should be saved without revision
    information, but there may be reasons to save it with the revision
    information (another reviewer needs to see it??)

    New start:

    Oops, now I see, there is also the entire revision history information.
    Hmm, in my past working lives, I would want to save the entire revision
    history for internal use, but any document I published to a vendor I'd
    probably want to publish without the revision history. So I'd want to
    guard against two things:

       * accidentally deleting my "internal" copy with the revision history
       * accidentally publishing my "internal" copy to an external party

    I have no good suggestions on the UI, but it needs to support those
    items with minimal chance of confusion for the user.

    Can I brainstorm from there?

    Maybe two (or more) files should exist (and be supported by AbiWord and
    its UI):
       * The master file with all the revisions, and with some (possibly
    new) extension which indicates it is the master or contains the complete
    revision history. (Maybe .mast or .src or .rhist or ...) It should not
    be easy to save the master file without the revision history.
       * A "published" file at a specific revision level, containing no
    revision history but possibly referencing the master document and
    including the revision number from the master document (possibly as an
    extension, like .r2 or whatever). It should not be easy to publish
    (save) a "published" file with any revision history (other than a
    revision number that is consistent with revision numbers in the master

    So maybe there are two save commands:
       * Save Master Document
       * Publish (Save) Revision <nn>

    So what would the Master Document do about revisions before they are
    accepted? I haven't given this any thought so far. Maybe part of what
    they do is become labeled as tentative revisions, for example (as an
    extension) .r2a, .r2b, etc.. Note that in Word (97) the same document
    can be sent to multiple reviewers either in series or in parallel. When
    done in parallel, they must eventually be merged.

       * We are treading into areas where RCS might be the better / more
    traditional tool, but we know that MS Word has gone down a similar path
    and we (presumably) want to provide similar features.
       * Word (97 and earlier) does have the concept of a master document,
    but it is more related to breaking a large document into pieces. AFAIK,
    it has nothing to do with revision or revision history.

    Just food for thought.

    Randy Kramer

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