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Manual: Construction-Standard Values

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Each Interactive SiteTerm categorizes ("groups") data elements together by using a variety of database fields. Thus, every ChapterTerm must carefully define the various groups of data elements using a set of Standard Values.

To illustrate this, assume that we're discussing the Matches table, which allows us to define a single Match. Matches are usually grouped by their assigned LeagueTerm, LevelTerm, and DivisionTerm (as a starting point). At issue here is how to store the database values that represent the League, Level, and Division values.

Open Text or Predefined Values?

One option is to make the League, Level, and Division database fields "open text" fields, where the AdministratorTerm can type any value. However, this method allows for improperly entered values. For example, when identifying the League that the Match belongs to, the Administrator might accidentally enter "yoth" instead of "youth". This would result in faulty database displays for a Referee trying to find "youth" matches, because the Site would not display the "yoth" match!

Thus, RidgeStar recommends that you predefine all grouping fields so that the Administrator (and Visitor) can select the database elements from a "predefined" list.

The following table illustrates the difference between "open text" and "predefined" database fields:

Standard Value Demonstration
Open Text Predefined
Action

As you can see, the "Open Text" field permits you to enter any value, including an incorrectly spelled value, whereas the "Predefined" field allows you to quickly select the correct value. In short, with predefined values, it is NOT POSSIBLE to select an incorrect value!

What does this mean?

Simply put, it means all grouping data elements (such as our example League, Level, and Division) MUST be predefined. Your Chapter should think of appropriate values and let RidgeStar know what they are. You can then sit back and experience the power available from well-organized data that is restricted to valid values only!

However, you must define the values before you start operating the Site (i.e. BEFORE data entry begins, not AFTER).