Monday, June 22, 2015

Jazzing up Legacy reports

Someone on the Legacy Virtual Users' Group Community on Google+ said that they were trying to learn more about Legacy reports and how to make them more attractive and interesting to family and friends.  Many Legacy users miss a very powerful tool called “Edit Event Definitions.”

In a nutshell, Legacy uses simple codes to trigger how sentences read out in reports.  You can manipulate these codes to alter how the sentences will read.  You can get VERY creative with this to include conditional sentences (if… then…). 

In the Help File, type in the word "Sentence" (no quotes) and then click the word "Event" that appears underneath that entry.  This explains how to customize your sentences and it will list all of the codes and what they do. 

To get to the screen where you can do this, go to VIEW >  MASTER LISTS > EVENT DEFINITION.   When I am working with Events I like to purge my unused ones so that I can see what I really have.  OPTIONS > PURGE UNUSED.  Uncheck the box that will put the defaults back in.  You can put these back in later if you want to by doing the same thing only this time check marking the box.

Highlight the first event you want to work with and then click EDIT over on the right.  The first screenshot shows the screen where you can change the way the sentences will be worded.  This is actually a lot of fun.  This is the generic Residence event.  You can change the codes or you can change the text between the codes.  Here are two simple examples. In the first field I could change the sentence to:

[FirstName] lived [inPlace] at [Desc] [onDate].  You have A LOT of codes you can choose from and the possibilities are endless.

You can do something more complicated like:

[HeShe] <::lives::lived> at [Desc] [inPlace] [onDate].  Now the verb tense will change depending on whether or not the person is living or deceased.



You can also do this with shared event roles.  Here is the generic Occupant role.



After you take the time to customize these events you definitely want to tag them so know what you have already done.



On the first screenshot you will notice that there is a RESET button in the bottom right corner.  If you click this you have two options:


If you choose to Load default sentences, it will reset to the Legacy generic sentences.  This is useful if you aren’t happy with what you have done and you want to start over.  If you have crafted some really good sentences for another event that you think could give you a head start on a new event you are working on you can choose to Load sentences from another event.

Have fun!


Copyright © 2015 Michèle Simmons Lewis

1 comment:

  1. Thanks Michele. I've used this feature many times. I think it's an underused feature. But, a very helpful one.