NEPHIS32 - Help

Contents


NEPHIS32 is a compiled program (written in Delphi 6) for generating index displays using NEPHIS (NEsted PHrase Indexing System).

Environment

To use NEPHIS32, you need to be running a 32-bit version of Windows. In addition, to view this help file and other HTML files from within NEPHIS32, need to have a suitable application (such as Microsoft Internet Explorer) associated with the extension .htm.

NEPHIS

For a more detailed introduction to NEPHIS, see or

NEPHIS is a string indexing system. In a string indexing system, computer software accepts source descriptions of indexed items and generates a set of index entries for each description. The index entries from a single source description usually provide the same, or similar, information, but each at a different place in the index.

For example, from the source description

@Use? of <Numeric <Data>>? in <Humanities? & <Social Sciences? & >> . 123
NEPHIS software generates the index entries:
  1. Data . Numeric - . Use in Humanities & Social Sciences . 123
  2. Humanities & Social Sciences . Use of Numeric Data . 123
  3. Numeric Data . Use in Humanities & Social Sciences . 123
  4. Social Science & Humanities . Use of Numeric Data . 123

Most of a NEPHIS source description consists of words and phrases in ordinary language. To control the index entries produced, the indexer can use four different coding symbols: the left and right angular brackets ("<" and ">"); the "at" sign ("@"); and the question mark ("?").

The "<" and ">" mark off nested phrases within the source description. Examples of nested phrases in the source description above are:

Normally, the software produces one index entry corresponding to each of the nested phrases within a source description and one corresponding to the source description as a whole. An "@" at the beginning of a nested phrase or of the whole source description suppresses generation of the corresponding index entry. For example, the "@" at the beginning of the source description above means that there is no corresponding index entry beginning with "Use".

A "?" in the source description marks the beginning of a connective that is to be omitted from some of the entries. If the next coding symbol after the "?" is a "<", the connective is forward-reading; i.e., it normally connects some earlier term to the nested phrase that follows the "<" in the source description. Examples of forward-reading connectives in the source description above are " of " and the first " & ". If the next coding symbol after the "?" is a ">", the connective is backward-reading; i.e., it normally connects the nested phrase that ends at the ">" to some earlier term. In the source description above, the second " & " is a backward-reading connective.

As general guidelines for constructing NEPHIS source descriptions, prefer nouns or noun phrases as terms and prepositions as connectives. Adjectival terms are permitted where needed for good index entries. For coordinate or parallel terms, use of paired forward- and backward-reading " & " connectives is recommended; generally, do not bother with backward-reading connectives otherwise. A nested phrase should be normally be meaningful in itself: the positioning of the brackets should reflect the grammatical structure of the description.

Put the locator or other reference at the end of the source description; e.g., "123" in the source description above.

Running NEPHIS32

To run NEPHIS32, run the Nephis32.exe program.

To terminate a session with NEPHIS32, click on the "X" button of the main application window, but first make sure you have stored your set of source descriptions if you want to use them again.

Creating and editing NEPHIS source descriptions

NEPHIS32 provides space for a large number of NEPHIS source descriptions. These source descriptions will be displayed, one description to a line, in the upper part of the main application window for you to edit as you wish.

Generally, for the best results, adopt a consistent scheme of capitalization. Using lower case except on the initial letters of terms produces a good index display without too much indexer effort.

To insert a line for a new description, just press the Enter key. To delete a description, select it and press the Delete key.

Outputting the index entries for a single source description

To output the index entries for your current source description (the one containing the caret), click on the "Current index strings" button.

If the source description is illegally coded, NEPHIS32 will point out the location of the first error. Otherwise, it will display the corresponding index entries in the Rich Text box in the bottom part of the main application window.

Outputting a tree display of a single source description

To output a tree-format display showing the structure of your current source description, click on the "Tree" button.

If the source description is illegally coded, error(s) will be pointed out at the end of the tree display.

Seeing entries generated step by step

To see entries generated step by step from your current source description, click on the "Step" button. As entries are generated, NEPHIS32 will display the source description, the current entry so far, and the current special character. In the source description, the current position will be underlined, and parts that have been fully dealt with will appear less emphasized. In the entry, the latest connective will appear in italics until it is either rejected or accepted for inclusion.

To terminate the step-by-step demonstration, click on the special "Stop" button.

Shifting between source descriptions

Use the scroll bar or the cursor keys to shift up and down through the source descriptions.

To shift to a source description by number, click on the "Jump to..." button; then type in the number of the source description desired and press the "Enter" key.

Saving and retrieving sets of source descriptions

To store on disk the set of source descriptions with which you are currently working, first click on the "Save" button near the top of the main application window. Next, use the standard dialog to select or create the file in which you want to record the source descriptions.

To retrieve a set of source descriptions from disk, first click on the "Retrieve" button. Then, use the standard dialog to select the file from which you want to retrieve the source descriptions. Note that the contents of the file will replace all the source descriptions that were previously in computer memory.

Producing your index

To output your index to the Rich Text box in the lower part of the main application window, press either the "Formatted index" button or the "Unformatted index" button. Use the "Formatted index" button for a formatted index, suitable for printed or other display. Use the "Unformatted index" button for an unformatted index, suitable for merging with other sorted files.

NEPHIS32 will point out the nature and location of the first error, if any; if this happens, press the Enter key to continue.

Extracts from sample formatted and unformatted indexes follow.

Formatted

Computerized Bibliographic Networks
Databases Accessible in Canada . 3 110-122
Computerized Bibliographic Systems
Role of Intermediaries . 3 123-147
Use in Reference Work . 1 15-29
DOBIS
. Canadian Version. Evaluation by National Library of Canada . 2 61-78
Data
on Demand for Books . Use in Distribution of Books among Branches of Library Systems . 1 65-68

Unformatted

Computerized Bibliographic Networks. Databases Accessible in Canada . 3 110-122
Computerized Bibliographic Systems. Role of Intermediaries . 3 123-147
Computerized Bibliographic Systems. Use in Reference Work . 1 15-29
DOBIS. Canadian Version. Evaluation by National Library of Canada . 2 61-78
Data on Demand for Books. Use in Distribution of Books among Branches of Library Systems . 1 65-68

HTML indexes

To create an index in HTML format, click on the "HTML index" button and use the standard dialog to select or create the file in which you want to store it.

To view the HTML index that you have created, click on the "View" button to the right of the "HTML index" button. This should bring up a view of the HTML index in the browser associated with .htm extension on your workstation.

Options

To change formatting and input options, click on the "Options" button. The following options are available.

Break before first connective

By default, this option is checked. If you uncheck it, the subheading will not start until the first space-plus-period (" ."), and some headings may be rather long; for example, the last entry shown above will be displayed as
Data on Demand for Books
Use in Distribution of Books among Branches of Library Systems . 1 65-68

Omit first connective

By default, this option is unchecked. It can be applied only if "Break before first connective" is also checked. If you check it, any connective will be omitted at the beginning of a subheading; the sample entry above will thus appear as
Data
Demand for Books . Use in Distribution of Books among Branches of Library Systems . 1 65-68

Eliminate duplicate headings

By default, this option is checked. If you uncheck it, each entry will appear in full, even when it has the same heading as its predecessor; for example,
Canada
Government . Information . Access by Citizens of Canada . 5 1-9
Canada
History . Books in French Language cited in National Union Catalog Pre-1956 Imprints . Bibiliographic Control . Role of WHSTC Project . 5 115-123

Bold headings

By default, this option is checked. If you uncheck it, headings will not appear in boldface; for example,
Data
on Demand for Books . Use in Distribution of Books among Branches of Library Systems . 1 65-68

Save output as Rich Text

By default, this option is checked. If you uncheck it, clicking on the "Save" button at the bottom of the main application window will cause the output to be saved as plain ASCII text; the Rich Edit box will still contain Rich Text, however.

Entry ends in URL

By default, this option is checked, meaning that, when an HTML version of the index is created, it is assumed that everything after the last space-plus-period (" .") in each entry is the URL that the entry points to and so will be used to create a link but will not be displayed. Uncheck this box if you want to create an HTML index without links.

"#" marks cross-reference

By default, this option is checked; this means that, when an HTML version of the index is created, it is assumed that everything after the first number sign ("#") in each entry is a heading to which a cross-reference is being made and so an appropriate link should be created. For example, in the entry
Periodicals . see also #Newspapers
a link would be created to the heading "Newspapers".

If active, this option takes precedence over "Entry ends in URL".

Thesaurus file

Use this edit box to enter the pathname of a NEPHIS thesaurus from which permuted cross-references will be generated. The thesaurus file should be sorted and each line should consist of a character string to which cross-references should be made, a separator (either = for "see" references or == for "see also" references), and a NEPHIS input string; for example,
Brass==Alloys? of <Copper? & <Zinc? & >>

Input guard

By default, this option is not checked. If it is checked, your current source description is continually reformatted so that it is always valid NEPHIS input: an unmatched "<" is changed temporarily to "«"; a "?" without a following angular bracket is changed temporarily to "¿"; an "@" following an unmatched "<" is changed temporarily to "ª"; and an unmatched ">" or a misplaced "@" is deleted.

Live update

By default, this option is not checked. If it is checked, you will see entries for your current source description automatically as you change it, without having to click on the "Current index strings" button.

Formatting your set of source descriptions

To display the complete set of source descriptions with which you are currently working in a format suitable for printing or other display, press the "Formatted input strings" button. NEPHIS32 will display the formatted input strings in the Rich Edit box in the lower part of the main application window.

Automatically coding your source description

To add the NEPHIS coding symbols "<", ">", and "@" automatically to your current source description, press the "Autocode" button.

For satisfactory results, your initial source description should be an ordinary English noun phrase. The only words not beginning with capital letters should be connectives. It is better to add the locator or other reference after the automatic coding rather than before.

For example, given the uncoded source description

Computerized Systems in Public Libraries
the automatic coder will produce the coded source description
Computerized Systems in <Public <Libraries>>

Saving output

To save the output from the Rich Text box to a file, click on the "Save" button at the bottom of the main application window and use the standard dialog to select or create the file.

Limitations

The maximum nesting level is 20.

Total input is limited to the amount of text that will fit in a standard Windows memo control.


Last updated February 5, 2008, by Tim Craven