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"Data Merge" question

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"Data Merge" question
« on: March 07, 2010, 04:15:39 AM »
Hi,

I have a csv file with two columns, "Original Sentence" and "Rewrite Sentence". Each sentence in my article is spun twice. Therefor I have for each original sentence two raws.  The  "Original Sentence" value in these two raws of course identical, but the "Rewrite Sentence" are two different rewrite sentence of the original sentence. How can I use "Data Merge" feature to automatically add the original sentence and its two rewrite sentences? ({original sentence | RW1 | RW2}).It could save me a lot of time


Offline Meg

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Re: "Data Merge" question
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2010, 06:26:02 AM »
Hi,

I have a csv file with two columns, "Original Sentence" and "Rewrite Sentence". Each sentence in my article is spun twice. Therefor I have for each original sentence two raws.  The  "Original Sentence" value in these two raws of course identical, but the "Rewrite Sentence" are two different rewrite sentence of the original sentence. How can I use "Data Merge" feature to automatically add the original sentence and its two rewrite sentences? ({original sentence | RW1 | RW2}).It could save me a lot of time


My understanding of the data merge feature is that if you have, say, 5 different rows in the data merge tab, each containing data about 1 item, then you will get 5 different articles, each containing the data from one row of the data merge tab.
For example, if your data merge tab contains:
Name   movement   time
John   jog   2.30pm
Mary   walk   3.30pm
Geoff   run   4.30pm
Jane   drive   5.30pm
Terry   spin   6.30pm
Then, article one will write about John, who went for a jog at 2.30pm. And every time you use the [Name] placeholder in article 1, it will mention John and every time you use [movement] in article 1 it will use the word "jog" and the time of 2.30pm when you use the placeholder [time]. But in article 2, the same placeholders will use "Mary", "walk" and "3.30pm". Does this help you with your need? If not, can you give a bit more detail please?
« Last Edit: March 07, 2010, 06:28:50 AM by Meg »

Re: "Data Merge" question
« Reply #2 on: March 07, 2010, 01:10:20 PM »
ofoyer, it appears to me you are looking for a sentence merge feature that I'd love to have in TBS as well (if I read you correctly).  Today I use a competitor's product to accomplish this, though even that product will only merge the sentences or paragraphs of two articles, not three or more (as you're hoping to do).

Your inquiry and Meg's response, however, got me to wondering if the TBS "Data Merge" tab might accommodate this need. I'm able to get it to work - sort of - using this feature in a way for which it probably wasn't designed.  Here's what I did:

I wrote two "sister" articles where every sentence in one article was matched by a "synonymous" sentence in the second article.

In a spreadsheet, I placed each sentence in one cell, and lined up the articles like this:

ORIGINAL ARTICLE   SECOND ARTICLE
Sentence 1            Sentence 1
Sentence 2            Sentence 2
Sentence 3            Sentence 3
And so on               And so on

I saved that as a .CSV file and used the "Data Merge" tab's "Load Data From File" button to load in the contents.

In the TBS Article tab, I simply added {[ORIGINAL ARTICLE]|[SECOND ARTICLE]}

Then back in the "Data Merge" tab, I clicked the "Merge Data With Article" button.

In the "Generate Spun Articles" box that pops up, I check the "Generate a single text file" box and blank out the "Article Separator Text" field.  Then clicked the "Generate Articles" button and saved it on my PC.

When I open the file, I have a spun article.

The "sort of" part of this that I referenced above is that this method will unfortunately only generate one spun article version at a time, and you have to save it to your computer to do so.  That would mean creating many individual files on your computer and then doing whatever you need with them (e.g. copy & paste contents of each to various article directories, or whatever...).

It would also mean adding synonym phrases & words to each of your articles separately before using the "Data Merge" approach so that those are already loaded into all of your sentences before you starting the steps I mentioned above.

So it's pretty tedious, and if you need a lot of spun articles, it would probably be faster to manually merge the sentences from your three separate articles (or use the other guy's tool - or some other data merging tool) and then do your spinning.

Can anyone think of a better way to accomplish sentence merging than what I outlined above and also without asking Jon to add another feature to TBS?

Offline Meg

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Re: "Data Merge" question
« Reply #3 on: March 07, 2010, 02:52:46 PM »
ofoyer, it appears to me you are looking for a sentence merge feature that I'd love to have in TBS as well (if I read you correctly).  Today I use a competitor's product to accomplish this, though even that product will only merge the sentences or paragraphs of two articles, not three or more (as you're hoping to do).

Your inquiry and Meg's response, however, got me to wondering if the TBS "Data Merge" tab might accommodate this need. I'm able to get it to work - sort of - using this feature in a way for which it probably wasn't designed.  Here's what I did:

I wrote two "sister" articles where every sentence in one article was matched by a "synonymous" sentence in the second article.

In a spreadsheet, I placed each sentence in one cell, and lined up the articles like this:

ORIGINAL ARTICLE   SECOND ARTICLE
Sentence 1            Sentence 1
Sentence 2            Sentence 2
Sentence 3            Sentence 3
And so on               And so on

I saved that as a .CSV file and used the "Data Merge" tab's "Load Data From File" button to load in the contents.

In the TBS Article tab, I simply added {[ORIGINAL ARTICLE]|[SECOND ARTICLE]}

Then back in the "Data Merge" tab, I clicked the "Merge Data With Article" button.

In the "Generate Spun Articles" box that pops up, I check the "Generate a single text file" box and blank out the "Article Separator Text" field.  Then clicked the "Generate Articles" button and saved it on my PC.

When I open the file, I have a spun article.

The "sort of" part of this that I referenced above is that this method will unfortunately only generate one spun article version at a time, and you have to save it to your computer to do so.  That would mean creating many individual files on your computer and then doing whatever you need with them (e.g. copy & paste contents of each to various article directories, or whatever...).

It would also mean adding synonym phrases & words to each of your articles separately before using the "Data Merge" approach so that those are already loaded into all of your sentences before you starting the steps I mentioned above.

So it's pretty tedious, and if you need a lot of spun articles, it would probably be faster to manually merge the sentences from your three separate articles (or use the other guy's tool - or some other data merging tool) and then do your spinning.

Can anyone think of a better way to accomplish sentence merging than what I outlined above and also without asking Jon to add another feature to TBS?
That sounds an interesting possibility. I must try that out. I have been using the normal sentence substitution with my articles. That is, you have an article, select the sentence and write (or paste in) your own version of that sentence straight to the article, as a sentence synonym, so you have {sentence 1|sentence 2}. This means that either sentence 1 or sentence 2 is used in the subsequent spun article. This can of course be extended to writing additional sentences to replace sentence 1 at random, so you get {sentence 1| sentence 2| sentence 3| sentence 4}. The new paragraph button is also handy, in that you can write or paste in 2, 3, 4 or more paragraphs, all of which are alternatives for that article, select them all and click on the "Spin selected paragraphs together" icon (14th from the left in version 2.03) and get them put in the correct format for using just 1 of the paragraphs, or a blank, in the article. Of course, this can be repeated as many times as you want within the article. Of course, by removing the article separator for the generator, you get one long text file, which could be interesting if you were also using the data merge facility. And of course, you could keep that in and just delete it from the generated file if necessary. You would have a bit of tidying up to do but you could get some very interesting results.

Re: "Data Merge" question
« Reply #4 on: March 07, 2010, 03:05:54 PM »
You guys went way over my head with that one.

Rick
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Re: "Data Merge" question
« Reply #5 on: March 07, 2010, 04:04:33 PM »
I'm with Meg,

Why not use the sentence selection mode when creating new versions?

It works seamlessly.

Re: "Data Merge" question
« Reply #6 on: March 07, 2010, 04:36:18 PM »
I like to keep the two articles separate, merge them all at once, then work on the individual phrases & words.  Just my preference.  That's why I like using "the other guy's" program for its merging function.

I wouldn't actually use the "Data Merge" steps I described above. But I thought that technique was worth a try since the issue came up here. It would be too much extra work for the number of articles I (and probably most of us) need.
« Last Edit: March 07, 2010, 07:34:21 PM by cburkhart7 »

Re: "Data Merge" question
« Reply #7 on: March 07, 2010, 04:51:25 PM »
You guys went way over my head with that one.

Trust me, I'm not flaming you zbikenut, but I'm honestly surprised that you don't understand this concept.

Earlier you had professed you are the ultimate power user who is smarter than most TBS users, did you not? Again, I'm not attacking you (I had even defended you in your earlier inflammatory post). But anyone who professes to be a power user should definitely understand this sentence merge concept.

If anyone has used WebsiteContentWizard before (which is now defunct), it had similar capabilities, but was extremely awkwardly implemented.