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    Adding a new call
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    How can I insert new calls?

    To add a new call to CSDS (such as an old call or experimental), you have to do 3 things:
    1. Add the call to the list database.
      1. Go to 'List | List database | Edit'.
      2. Select 'Edit | Add new record'.
      3. Enter information in the 'Enter new record' edit box.
        1. Put the call name in the 'Text' field.
        2. Select the appropriate 'Level' and 'Number of Dancers'.
        3. Modify the other fields as desired.
      4. Write down the number in the 'Handle' field.
      5. Click the 'Save' button.
      6. Close the window, and select "Y" to Save Changes.
    2. Add the call to the parse database.
      1. Go to 'Parse | Parse database | Edit'.
      2. Select 'Edit | Add new record'.
      3. Enter the call name within the 'Text string' field.
      4. Enter the Handle number (from the list database, step 1-d above) within the 'Handle list' field.
      5. Click the 'Save' button.
      6. Repeat steps b thru e for all possible spellings of the call.
      7. Close the window, and select "Y" to Save Changes.
    3. Add the call to the snapshot database.
      • This can best be accomplished by writing a sequence via 'Sequence | New sequence [graphics]'. Write the sequence and set up the call then try to do the call. A 'Call not found, add it?' screen appears. If you don't know how to add an instance of a call, look at (start with step 7 or so).

    last modified: 17-November-2015   
    After Roll / After Facing
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    I was writing the following sequence:

    Sides Touch 1/2, Lockit,
    Ping Pong Circulate,
    Scoot Back,
    Centers Linear Cycle,
    Ends Cloverleaf,
    Centers Square Thru 3,
    Centers In,
    All 8 Circulate,
    Centers Pass The Ocean,
    Girls Diamond Circulate,
    Heads DYP Interlocked Diamond Circulate,
    Sides Diamond Circulate

    The program didn't know what to do with the last call, so it presented me with the Edit Snapshot Record window. I'm still not completely comfortable with editing snapshot records. The call parsed as "Side(s) IDENTIFIER" AND "Diamond Circulate". As I'm asking for only the Sides to do the call, do I check them as Active in the right-hand "Active" box? Could you also please explain the "After Roll" and "After Facing" boxes to me?

    The Sides should have their 'Active' box checked; other dancers should not.

    'After Facing' indicates the facing direction of the dancers after the call. If you drag the dancers, then click for their noses, this field is set automatically.

    'After Roll' indicates the direction that the dancers would turn if a Roll was added after the call.

    Asymmetric Identifiers
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    I know how to have dancers "Face The Music." How do I have the dancers "Face The Back Of The Hall" (or East or West)? How do select a subset of dancers based on the direction they are facing? (Back Facing Point Triangle Circulate? Back Facing Dancers Run?)

    In CSDS 1.29.09, I have added additional calls:
    1. Face The Back Of The Hall (aka Face Position 3)
    2. Face The Second Position (aka Face Position 2) [turn to face the #2 wall]
    3. Face The Fourth Position (aka face Position 4) [turn to face the #4 wall].
    You'll need the 'complete release' of CSDS 1.29.09 or later to get this.

    last modified: 01-November-2009   
    Back Away
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    When I end a sequence with "Back Away", that sequence is never successfully proofread even though no error is reported.

    "Back Away" is not a valid last call. In order for a sequence to be proofread, the sequence must end with "Allemande Left", "Right & Left Grand", or "Home" (or "You're Home").

    To solve your problem, just add a final line with the word(s) "Home" or "You're Home!"

    Boys Courtesy Turn The Girls
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    I have a Double Pass Thru formation with the four girls in the centre. I have the Girls Pass Thru, then I want the Boys to Courtesy Turn them. In the Abbreviations database, you have Courtesy Turn Ahead, but when I try that, I get a "token not recognized" type of message.

    Try "Boys Courtesy Turn The Girls"

    Heads Star Thru,
    Double Pass Thru,
    Centers In, Cast Off 3/4,
    Pass Thru,
    Wheel & Deal,
    Girls Square Thru 3,
    Boys Courtesy Turn The Girls,
    Flutter Wheel,
    Square Thru 3,

    last modified: 05-October-2008   
    Bypassing the parser
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    Several of the sequences I've developed and used over the years do not pass your sequence parser. Some of this, I believe, can be handled by flagging some of the words/phrases as comments. However, some of the sequences have "concepts/formations" that CSDS does not understand. When I get a handle on defining new items, I may be able to deal effectively with this. However, for the present, I would like to import a sequence, as is, and, have CSDS not parse it. I realize that will mean that the formation graphics screen will not be able to be displayed. However, it would be nice to be able to bypass parsing for given sequences. Is this possible?

    You can 'ignore parsing' when adding new sequences via two methods:

    1. Use 'Sequence | New Sequence [Text]' instead of 'Sequence | New Sequence [Graphics]'. When the program complains and prompts whether or not to 'Re-edit Sequence XXX-nnn?", press the 'No' button.
    2. Via 'Sequence | Import', there is a checkbox entitled 'Ignore Parse Problems'. This option allows you to import sequences from a variety of different file types.

    If you still have parse problems, after commenting out comments (via parentheses), send me the sequence text in a text file, and I'll see if I can modify the parse database to accept the phrases.

    last modified: 12-June-2020   
    Call Not Found - too few dancers
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    Sometimes in the 'Call Not Found' screen I only have 2 or 4 dancers showing. I'm not sure how to move them without the full square being there. No problem when I get the full 8 dancers. Could you enlighten me a little?

    Snapshot records are designed to contain the minimum number of dancers necessary to do a call. For example, the snapshot record for TOUCH 1/4 should contain two dancers. The CSDS program takes that record and extrapolates how to do a TOUCH 1/4 from formations consisting of multiples of two dancers (e.g., Facing Couples, Facing Lines, Eight Chain Thru, etc.)

    When the 'Call Not Found in snapshot database, add it?' screen appears, the program is processing an internal list of possibilities of how to do the call. The program may or may not be trying to use enough dancers to do the call. If there are not enough dancers displayed to be able to do the call, click the 'Next' button to cause the program to display the next possibility in it's internal list. Repeatedly click the 'Next' button until the desired starting formation and number of dancers appears. Then you can add a new snapshot record.

    To force the program to use 8 dancers, you must

    1. exit the 'Call Not Found' screen via the 'Cancel' button,
    2. then select 'Flags | Set all flags', and
    3. press 'Enter' (to process the 'Edit buffer').
    Now all 8 dancers will be displayed, and the call can be added. Be sure to 'Clear all flags' when you are done, or the program may start behaving strangely.

    Cleaning up database files
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    I've started to clean up my sequence database files. I've imported some sequences into one larger sequence database and want to delete the old databases. Can I do this thru Windows or are there considerations due to index files etc.

    Sequence databases are stored as C:\SQDATA\SEQ\*.SEQ

    You must use CSDS to import or move sequences between sequence databases since the first record in each sequence database contains database specific information.

    To delete or rename a sequence database:

    1. From the CSDS main menu, select 'Sequence' followed by either 'New sequence' or 'View sequence'. This brings up the 'Select Sequence Database' dialog box.
    2. Highlight the desired sequence database (left-click on it)
    3. Now right-click the mouse to bring up a context-sensitive menu, or click on the 'Database' menu.
    4. You should now have options to 'Delete' and 'Rename' the database.

    You can use DOS or WINDOWS to copy and rename sequence databases, however, the new name of the sequence database must be in DOS 8. format (i.e., 8 characters followed by ".seq").

    Sequence databases do not have index files.

    Sequence picture information is stored in the picture database. The picture database consists of two files in folder C:\SQDATA\PICTURES (PICTURE.DAT and PICTURE.INX). If you move sequences from one database to another, the picture is not moved. To reassociate a picture with a sequence, you must either 'Edit [Graphics]' or 'Proofread' the sequence.

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    When I am writing material with CSDS I can not find a way to add notes to the sequences. Is there a way to add notes that will show up when I am calling a dance from the computer?

    Use parentheses to enclose comments.

    That is,

    Heads Pass the Sea (L-H 1/4 Tag),
    Extend (watch it, LEFT hands!),
    Swing Thru (careful!),
    (Girls should now be in the middle)

    The entire comment must be on the same line. It can not be split between 2 or more lines.

    last modified: 25-May-2011   
    Copying a sequence
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    Is there a way to take and copy a sequence from one database to another?

    We want to reorganize but we want the same sequence in a number of databases.

    You can use standard Windows Cut+Paste operations.


    1. goto 'Sequence | Edit Sequence [Text]' and bring up the sequence you want to copy.
    2. When the edit window appears, press Ctrl+A to select all, then press Ctrl+C to copy everything to the Windows clipboard.
    3. Close the edit window.
    4. goto 'Sequence | New Sequence [Text]', and select the database that you wish to copy into.
    5. When the edit window appears, press Ctrl+V to paste the clipboard contents into the edit box.
    6. Close the edit window.

    Copying sequence text
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    I have spent considerable time writing some choreography in CSDS but when I tried to copy the text to another program, (Word Pad) I cannot find any way of doing this as there does not appear to be an option of copying the text out of CSDS.

    Goto 'Sequence | Edit sequence [Text]', and select a sequence.

    There are many ways to do this:

    1. Use Ctrl+A (select all), then Ctrl+C (to copy) or
    2. Use the 'Edit' menu


    3. Select the 'Print' option from either the menu or the toolbar and specify 'ASCII to File'.

    If you are in 'Edit sequence [Graphics]', you can

    1. Use the 'Print' option


    2. click within the upper sequence text section to open an 'Edit sequence [Text]' window.

    From 'Sequence | View sequence' or 'Select Sequence Database or Index | Sequence tab': either

    1. Use the 'Print' option


    2. Use the 'Edit sequence [Text]' window.

    From 'Call from Screen',

    1. Right-click on the sequence and select either 'Edit sequence [Text]' or 'Print...'.

    last modified: 09-January-2011   
    Copying sequences to another computer
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    I want to write sequences on my desktop, export them to a floppy, then import them to my laptop. How should I do it?

    Here's two different ways you could copy sequences from one computer to another.

    1. The easiest way is to just copy the sequence database from one computer to the other. Sequence databases are saved in C:\SQDATA\SEQ with a file extension of .SEQ. Just copy the file(s) to the same location on your laptop.
    2. To move specific sequences, do the following on the source computer:
      1. go to 'Sequence | Print sequence(s)';
      2. edit the 'Print List' field so that it contains a list of the sequences you want to move;
      3. set 'Format' to 'One text file';
      4. press the 'Print' button and give it a filename;
      5. copy that file to your laptop;
      Then, on your destination computer, do the following:
      1. go to 'Sequence | Import sequence(s);
      2. for 'Type of source files', select the second option, 'Text file (Sequences separated by an at-sign (@) in column #1';
      3. set the 'Source File' to the transferred file;
      4. set the 'Destination Database';
      5. press the 'OK' button to import the sequences.

    last modified: 22-March-2007   
    Deleting a sequence
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    How can I delete a sequence from a database?

    A sequence can only be deleted from a database if it is the last sequence in the database. However, you can edit the sequence and erase all the text, which effectively removes it. However, space for the empty sequence is still reserved in the database. The best course of action is to replace (overwrite) the sequence with another sequence.

    Duplicate sequences
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    When we type in a sequence, and there is another just like it, does it overwrite the old one or just put in another just like it?

    CSDS currently has no way to check for duplicate sequences as you write them.

    However, when you 'Import' sequences (from the main menu via 'Sequence | Import sequence(s)') there is an option to 'Skip duplicate sequences'. When checked, the program scans the destination database for each sequence prior to importing it, and does not import sequences that are already in the database.

    Ending a sequence
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    Do I need to end sequences with Promenade Home?

    Sequences must end at home only if the sequence database type is 'Module' with the 'To' field set to 'Static Set', or if the sequence database type is 'Stir The Bucket'.

    Singing Call sequences must end with 'Swing & Promenade', 'Promenade Home' or the equivalent

    Otherwise, sequences must end with one of the following:

    • Right & Left Grand
    • Allemande Left
    • Promenade Home
    • Home
    • Wrong Way Promenade Home
    • Single File Promenade Home

    Export ALL Sequences from a database
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    Is there any way to export ALL sequences in a database to a flat file? This would allow the sequences to be imported into an RTF file to select a larger font and then printed. I see that you can locate sequences and print to a file. However, it only seems to allow one sequence to be selected at a time. Is there any way to capture the text for a bunch of sequences?

    From the CSDS main menu,
    1. Select 'Sequence | Print...'
    2. Enter the list of sequences in the 'Print List' box. (press the little yellow ? on the toolbar for the format of this list)
    3. For 'Format', select 'one text file'.
    4. Determine which other options you want, then press the 'Write to Disk' button.

    last modified: 24-May-2013   
    Fixing programming error
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    I made an error in programming and I can't figure out how to straighten it out. I started from a static square, I did All 4 Couples Touch 1/4; all Single Wheel. I then wanted to do All 8 Pass & Roll; but I had to add it. However, I got the sides in the wrong position but didn't realize it until after I had closed the editing. The mistake I made was that I made the side boys U-Turn Back instead of the side girls, as leaders doing the Right Roll To A Wave at the end of the call. How can I straighten this out?

    I looked in the Parse database, the list database, and the abreviation database, but could not find this new call.

    You need to look in the Snapshot Database.

    1. From the CSDS main menu, select 'Snapshot | View a Record'.
    2. Press Ctrl+F12 (or select 'Navigate | Last Record in Database'. This should take you to the desired record. If not, press F11 a few times until you find the erroneous snapshot record.
    3. You can then either edit the record (Edit | Data) or delete the record (Edit | Toggle Delete)'.

    last modified: 25-May-2011   
    Frequency counts
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    Can I go back through a sequence database to insert a list so I can generate
    1. Frequency counts, and
    2. Lists of calls NOT used in the listed level?

    To generate a frequency count for a set of existing sequences:
    1. Create a list. (from the main menu, select 'List' followed by 'New'...)
    2. From the main menu, select 'Parse' followed by 'Several sequences'.
    3. Select a sequence database and range of sequences to be parsed. Click the 'OK' button.
    4. The 'Parse Specifications' dialog box appears. Use the default output file (since you probably won't look at it anyway), and select the 'list to be update' (use the list just created).
    5. Decide if you want to zero the use counts
      • if yes, the frequency counts in the list are set to 0.
      • if no, the existing frequency counts in the list are used as the starting values. This allows you to use the list to generate a cummulative frequency count of sequences from several different databases.
    6. Click 'OK' to start parsing the sequences.
    7. After parsing is complete, a dialog box appears allowing you to view/delete/print the output file. Click the 'delete' button (you only need to view this file if you're interested in parsing errors).
    8. Repeat steps 3 thru 7 (but do not zero the frequency counts) until all sequences have been processed
    9. At this point, the list contains the frequency counts for the sequences.

    To print the frequency counts:

    • From the main menu, select 'List', then 'Print a list' then '(F4) Frequency count'.

    To print the calls NOT used yet:

    • From the main menu, select 'List', then 'Print a list' then press F1, F2, F3, or F5 (I suggest F3 as it is the most compact; then set the use count min to 0 and the use count max to 0.

    To view the frequency counts:

    • From the main menu, select 'List' then 'View a list' then 'Display/L-H side/Use-count' then 'Display/Change use count range' and set minimum to 0 and maximum to 9999.

    To view the calls NOT used yet:

    • From the main menu, select 'List' then 'View a list' then 'Display/Change use count range' and set minimum to 0 and maximum to 0.

    last modified: 27-November-2006   
    Importing sequences
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    I'm experimenting with your "Sequence function" "Importing SD type format " in order to ...."Call From Screen".

    Here's my situation:
    I wrote tons of dances (sequences) using Bill A. "SD". Save them as... ie. E-Z_C-1.c1

    I modified these Sequences, Fonts, Wording and eliminated the Page Breaks in MS Word 2000. I liked the idea of printing at least 2 S/D moves to a line (instead of one) and inserting my own Page Breaks. I save them as a .doc file. Thus printed them out.

    Now I would like to import (if I could) this .doc type file into your CSDS program.

    .DOC files can not be imported into CSDS sequence databases.

    A text file is required.

    There are 3 kinds of text files that can be imported.

    1. A text file in which sequences are delimited by an at-sign in column #1. For example...
      Heads Wheel Thru
      Swing Thru 
      Heads Pass the Ocean, Ping Pong Circulate,
      Extend, Swing Thru,
      Spin the Top, Slide Thru,
      Pass to the Center, Centers Square Thru 3
      Left Allemande
      Sides Slide Thru
      Double Pass Thru
      Track 2
      all 8 Circulate
      Trade the Wave
    2. A text file in which sequences are separated by a blank line. For example...
      Heads Wheel Thru
      Swing Thru 
      Heads Pass the Ocean, Ping Pong Circulate,
      Extend, Swing Thru,
      Spin the Top, Slide Thru,
      Pass to the Center, Centers Square Thru 3
      Left Allemande
      Sides Slide Thru
      Double Pass Thru
      Track 2
      all 8 Circulate
      Trade the Wave
    3. SD format

    My advice is to try saving the file as text, with at-signs in column #1 between the sequences.

    If you still have problems, please send me (E-mail attachment) a sample .doc file, and one of the .txt files you created. I'll have a look at them.

    last modified: 25-May-2011   
    Importing sequences from MS Word
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    Is there a way to get MS Word docs (of SD sequences written and already processed) into the "import sequence" of any particular > dance? When I try to do it (and given, I haven't gone back and saved them as TXT or RTF files yet to try that)... I get a "this program has performed an illegal function and will be shut down" message, and all I can do is shut it down and try again.

    Sequences within MS Word documents can not be directly imported into CSDS.

    The best you can do is to use MS Word to convert the document into a text file, then edit the text file to put an at-sign (@) in column 1 between the sequences.

    For example, your edited text file should look similar to:

    Heads Promenade 1/2
    Heads Square Thru 4
    Circle To A Line
    Touch 1/4
    All 8 Circulate
    Centers Box Circulate
    Boys Run
    Centers Pass Thru
    Corner Swing & Promenade Home
    Heads Promenade 1/2,
    come down the middle and Square Thru 4,
    Right & Left Thru, Veer Left,
    Ferris Wheel,
    Centers Touch 1/4, Box Circulate - TWICE,
    Swing Corner & Promenade Home

    Then CSDS can import it easily.

    Within the 'Call from Screen' portion of CSDS, you can add up to three documents (preferably TXT or RTF instead of DOC) to a dance.

    Importing sequences from SD #1
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    Is it possible to import non-CSDS sequences into CSDS? I have some material written in SD that I would like to import into CSDS without having to retype it.

    CSDS can import sequences written by SD without any modifications to the SD file. To do so,
    1. From the main menu, select ' Sequence | Import sequence(s)'.
    2. In the 'source type' frame, click the 'SD format' option button.
    3. Use the browse button to specify the location of the SD text file.
    4. Select the destination sequence database.
    5. Make sure that the 'Ignore parse problems' check box is checked.
    6. Click on the 'OK' button to import the sequences.
    This function requires that the SD text file contain formfeeds (ASCII 12 decimal) delimiting the sequences. The header information within each SD sequence is translated into the appropriate fields within the CSDS sequence database.

    Should you have some other type of text file containing square dance choreography that you'd like to import into CSDS, send me a copy as an E-mail attachment, and I see if I can easily modify the program to import it.

    Importing sequences from SD #2
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    Just one question of curiosity...when you import sequences into a database (in my case from SD) you make another copy or merely just set up pointers to where I have them such that if I moved them or edited them, would it show?

    Importing sequences into a sequence database copies the sequences into the database. If you edit the originals, it is not reflected in the sequence database. You must edit the sequence within the CSDS sequence database.

    last modified: 25-May-2011   
    Importing sequences with formation pictures
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    Do you plan to add a function to automatically edit a sequence database so images stored will be shown after importing sequences from another database ?

    The answer (currently) is no.

    The formation pictures are not stored in the sequence itself, but rather a place-marker, '(#formation#)' is saved within the sequence text.

    To restore the images, you need to proofread the imported sequences. To do this,

    1. From the main menu, select 'Proofread | Sequences | Specified'.
    2. Select the desired sequence database.
    3. Enter a single dash (hypen) in the 'Records to proofread' field.
    4. Select option 'F3 - No prompts, create output file'.
    5. Press the 'OK' button. The program will then process the sequences, adding the formation pictures.

    Incorrect Resolve / Not Proofread
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    When I use the checkers and enter Heads Square Thru 4, corner swing, and promenade home I still get a "Incorrect Resolve". It then asked if I want to Re-edit Sequence XXXXXX-12 ? The final figure then has "Not Proofread" and the figure is OK. I know the documentation says it will verify Corner and Right lady progression in singing calls. Any ideas as to the problem.

    You need to tell the program what kind of sequences you are writing.

    Each sequence database has properties, one of which is the type of sequences contained in the database.

    When you create the sequence database, you should specify what type of sequences are to be saved in the database. For example,

    1. From the CSDS main menu, select 'Sequence | New sequence [graphics]'.
    2. From the resultant dialog box, select 'Database | New'.
    3. Enter a name for the database and press the 'OK' button.
    4. The 'Sequence Database Properties' box appears. At this point, you must specify the maximum level for the sequences. If nothing else is specified, the program assumes that all sequences in the database will be 8-dancer sequences, starting from a squared set, resolving with original partners. To specify another type of sequences, modify the 'Type of Sequences' dropdown list.

    To modify the properties of an existing sequence database,

    1. From the CSDS main menu, select 'Sequence | Show all databases'.
    2. Select (highlight) the database to be modified.
    3. From the menu, select 'Database | Properties'.
    4. Modify the properties and press the 'OK' button.

    Inserted formations #1
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    When I write a sequence, I like to insert a drawing of the formation after each call. However, I have found out that it is only possible to do this 20 times for each sequence. Is there a way in which I can increase this maximum number?

    20 is the maximum number of formations that can be inserted into a sequence. This is due to space limitations and database design. At this time, the number can not be increased.

    Inserted formations #2
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    When I insert drawings of the formations, I often get (in the large white space which contains the part of the sequence which has already been "treated") a drawing in the final part of the sequence which is clearly wrong. I often get a drawing of some kind of ring formation even though it should clearly be a "rectangular" formation. But when I go to the "Edit"-screen and click "Save", the problem is solved - the drawing of the ring formation is changed to a correct drawing. Do you have any explanation of this phenomenon?

    The program must process the sequence in "Edit Sequence [Graphics]" to determine the pictures to be inserted. If you edit the sequence in text-mode, the pictures will probably be incorrect.

    Merging seq databases
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    I have two computers running CSDS2 and I wonder if there is any way to merge two SEQ files. Please let me know if it is possible.

    It's not ideal, but it can be done.

    Copy the databases to be merged into another set of databases onto a thumb drive.

    1. Run CSDS on the destination machine.
    2. Select 'Sequence | Import'
    3. Make sure 'Source Type' = 'Sequence database'.
    4. For each database to be updated:
      1. select the 'Source' database - from the thumb drive.
      2. select the 'Destination' database.
      3. Make sure 'Skip duplicat sequences' is checked.
      4. Press the 'Import Sequences' button.

    When done, copy all sequence databases from this computer to the other.

    BTW, I do this in a slave/master sort of way. One machine is my master (for sequences, getouts, etc.) On the other, I create a new database each time I want to write new sequence on it. Later I import those sequences into the master computer, then delete and update all databases on the slave with those from the master.

    last modified: 06-November-2019   
    Missing formations
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    At one point last night, a formation embedded in a sequence was not displayed. This morning as I double check I cannot seem to duplicate the problem.

    Formations are not actually embedded in the sequences. Instead, a pointer is embedded that points to a separate file. If you copy a sequence database from one computer to another, you lose the formations on the destination computer. To restore the formations, you need to edit the sequence in graphics mode, or do a 'proofread' on the sequence or all sequences within the database.

    Not Parsed | Not Proofread
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    What is meant by "Not Parsed" They all have that comment and also "Not Proof Read".

    'Not Parsed' means that the calls within the sequence have not successfully passed thru the parser. That is, the program does not understand all the calls.

    'Not Proofread' means that the program did not successfully proofread the choreography in the sequence.

    If you wish to proofread the sequences in CSDS, from the main menu, select 'Sequence | Proofread | Specify'. Sequences will automatically be parsed as they are proofread.

    If the first line of a sequence is a comment such as (ROT-31 22-Jul-2009 Not Proofread) you can edit the sequence and remove the line.

    last modified: 01-November-2009   
    Parsing bug?
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    In the following sequence that our caller gave us for a workshop session:

    Heads: Pass The Sea,
    Jay: Touch 1/4,
    Centers: Single Polly Wally,
    Rims Trade: Reach Out,
    Centers: Reverse Explode,
    Split Catch Mix 2,
    Invert The Column 1/2,
    Explode The To,
    Plan Ahead,
    Centers: Veer Left,
    Jay: Swap Around,
    Interlocked Little,
    1/4 The Deucey,
    Snap The Lock,
    Trip The Set,
    Split Swap & Roll,
    In Roll Circulate,

    As you can see, the 8th call was [mis-]typed as "Explode The To" [sic].

    Of course, he meant "Explode the Top".

    I assumed that CSDS would blow up on the sequence -- however, it let it go through, which surprised me.

    Something was obviously wrong. So I started playing with it, and it turns out that instead of doing an "Explode the Top", the program just performed an "Explode". Seems to be a bizarre parsing bug, perhaps matching the substring (all but the last "p" character) to the extent of treating the string as permissible input, but then not resolving to the correct node. (?)

    It would be fine if the program offered a warning/error message, but simply performing a different call than was entered is really easy to miss if you aren't keeping an eagle eye on the formation diagrams.

    Not a likely/common error to happen, but it is an embarrasment "waiting to happen" for a caller eventually...

    CSDS has a set of 'garbage' words that it ignores when parsing. This set includes words such as 'do', 'the', 'a', 'an', and 'to'. If a parse error occurs on a line, and the only errors are garbage words, then CSDS ignores the error. That is what happened on 'Explode the to'. It found 'Explode' plus two legal garbage words.

    Parsing bug? #2
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    A minor parsing issue -- seems like either
    1. something useful should be done, or
    2. a barf should occur.

    Instead, no dancers change positions at all, and nothing happens.

    ---- Sequence ----
    Heads Pair Off,
    Touch 1/4,
    Zig Zag Zig Zag

    It's true that the call isn't legal from this position. A gripe would be nice, though I understand that code clutter to catch cases like these won't be a priority...

    The program executed the calls properly.

    CSDS allows more than one call to be given on a single line.

    On line 3, it executed the call 'Zig-Zag' followed by the call 'Zig-Zag'. Executing Zig-Zag twice from a R-H Box ends all dancers in the same position!

    Removing sequences
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    Can I remove sequences from database (what happens with the entries in dance program piles)?

    A sequence database is just a large binary file. It is not a true database. As such, if the sequence removed is not physically the last sequence within the file, it is not removed, but instead it is erased.

    If the sequence was in a dance, then that sequence is either displayed as empty when shown via a dance (when the sequence was not the last sequence in the database), or the sequence is displayed with an error message saying that the sequence was not found.

    A dance is just a set of links to sequences. Therefore, if the sequence is deleted, the links point to an empty or non-existent sequence.

    Share selected sequences with another caller
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    I want to provide some sequences to another caller. E.g. sequences 55-90 from database PLUS-PAT.SEQ, which contains 435 sequences.

    Is there an opportunity to do so? The export of selected sequences of a database, or the import of selected sequences into a database? As I understand CSDS does only import whole databases. I tried to open a database with word and delete the sequences I dont want to provide. But it failed, because I deleted important characters of the file accidently.

    No easy way...

    Do this:

    1. Run CSDS;

    First, create a text file with all the sequences:

    1. From the main menu, select 'Sequence | Print';
    2. Clear the print list (click the 'eraser' button, or 'Edit | Clear list';
    3. Enter the sequence range into the print list:
          E.g.,    PLUS-PAT
          (make sure the line with the numbers is indented)
    4. Select 'Format = One text file'.
    5. Press the 'Print' button.
    6. Select an Output File pathname then press the 'Save' button.
    7. The sequences are written to the file, and a confirmation message box appears. Close it.
    8. Close the 'Print Sequence(s)' window.

    Next, import the sequences into a new database:

    1. From the CSDS main menu, select 'Sequence | Import':
    2. For the 'Source type' (right-side), select 'Text file' (separated by at-sign (@))'
    3. For the 'Source file', select the output file created above.
    4. For the destination database, press the 'yellow sun' button to create a new database.
    5. Press the 'OK' button at bottom of "Import Sequences" window to populate the new database with the sequences from the file.


    last modified: 10-March-2020   
    Transferring sequences from one computer to another
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    Can you write sequences on one computer (laptop) and transfer them to another (desktop)?

    Sequence databases are stored in C:\SQDATA\SEQ\*.SEQ

    Use the Windows file explorer to copy the desired sequence database(s) to a floppy/zip-disk/etc to be transferred to the other computer.

    If you've just written a few sequences in a temporary database, you can copy the database to the other computer, then use the 'Sequence | Import Sequence(s)' function to import the sequences into an existing database.

    I use several computers. One of them I designate as the 'master' computer. It contains the current version of all my sequence databases. Whenever I write sequences on a different computer, I make sure that I copy the sequences to the 'master' computer. Then, periodicially, I copy all sequence databases to the other computers to make sure that they are up-to-date.

    Wording it correctly #1
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    Is there a way to tell if something I want to do is just not in the snapshot database or if I'm just not wording it in the "correct" way?

    To check the snapshot database:

    First, you need to 'View a snapshot record'. This can be done from the sequence writing screen via the menu option 'View | Last snapshot record used', or via the main menu option 'Snapshot | View a record'. Next, from the 'View snapshot' screen, select menu option 'Find | Find a record'. Click on the 'partial match' flag, and enter a call name or concept name into the 'Search string' field. For example, type in 'Percolate' then click the 'OK' button. The program searches the snapshot database and displays the first occurrence of 'Percolate'. Press the 'F3' button to display the next occurrence.

    The 'search string' could contain several tokens (e.g., 'anything Percolate But' is a valid search string).

    To check 'how to say it':

    The parse database is supposed to translate how you say it into how the computer understands it. There is no 'correct' way to say anything. There may be several ways to say something. If you have problems, send me the 'phrase' and I'll tell you why you're having trouble.

    Wording it correctly #2
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    How do I find a given call within the program? I want to use a call but I don't know how the call is listed. i.e., I tried to do an 'offset wave alter and circulate turn the diamond 3/4' as a way to get out of triple waves. I feel the call is there but I just can't get the program to find it.

    Calls such as the call described above are not in the database because I believe they are illegal.

    Two comments:

    1. Use 'offset waves' instead of 'offset wave', since the latter is a 4-dancer formation. If you have trouble getting the program to do 8-dancer 'offset wave' calls, this is the reason.
    2. If you want to use 'offset waves alter & circulate turn the diamond 3/4', you must add it as a snapshot record.

    Making the formation plural made a difference. However, I explored the snapshot database and found out that the database lists alter the wave as star n/m while I was trying to use turn the diamond.

    This is a parsing difference. Both ways of saying the call should work. The parse database translates both ways of saying the aforementioned call into the same 'list of handles', so that internally the two phrases are identical.

    You can edit the parse database to customize the program to allow it to understand how you say the call.

    The demo version of CSDS does not allow the parse database to be modified.

    Writing a sequence
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    How do I input and see the following sequence?
    Heads Square Thru
    Swing Thru
    Boys Run
    Ferris Wheel
    Centers Pass Thru
    Allemande Left

    1. Start the CSDS program.
    2. From the main menu, select 'Sequence' followed by 'New sequence [Graphics]'.
    3. If this is the first time that you've tried writing a sequence, a dialog box appears saying 'No sequence databases exist! Create a new sequence database?'. Click on the 'Yes' button.
    4. A screen appears asking for the name of the new database. Each sequence must be stored in a sequence database, and, a sequence database may contain many sequences. Since the above sequence is a mainstream-level sequence, enter something like 'MS' for the name of the new sequence database, then click 'OK'.
    5. The 'Edit Sequence Database Parameters' screen appears. Use this screen to specify the type of sequences to be stored in the database. The most important item on this page is the 'Maximum level' field. Click the down button of the 'Maximum level' field and select 'MS' for Mainstream. This tells that program that you intend to use this database for Mainstream-level sequences. Click 'OK' to save the changes and exit the screen.
    6. The 'Edit Sequence [Graphics]' screen appears with a caption of 'Editing MS-1'. This means you are writing sequence #1 in database MS.
    7. In the lower left portion of the screen is the 'Edit buffer' field. This is where you type in the calls to be executed. After typing in a call, press the 'Enter' key. The program will then attempt to execute the call.
    8. Type 'Heads Square Thru' (without the quotes) into the 'Edit buffer' field, and press the 'Enter' key. The program will execute the call.
    9. Now type 'SWTH' into the edit buffer and press the 'Enter' key. The program translates the abbreviation 'SWTH' into 'Swing Thru' and executes the call. Alternatively, you could just enter 'Swing Thru' instead of 'SWTH'.
    10. Continue in the above manner (i.e., type a call or abbreviation then press the 'Enter' key) until you've completed the sequence.
    11. When the sequence is complete, exit the screen by selecting 'Exit' from the menu, or, if you wish to create another sequence, select 'Change' followed by 'New sequence [Graphics]'.
    12. Assuming you selected 'New sequence [Graphics]', a dialog box appears with a caption of 'Select Sequence Database'. To create another MS-level sequence, just click 'OK'. To create a sequence with another level, say, a plus-level sequence, click on 'New database' and follow the steps described starting with step 4 (above).

    While writing sequences, the menu has many options. In particular, you should be aware of the the following:

    • To search for a getout (resolve) from the current formation, press 'Ctrl+G', or, from the menu, select 'Find' followed by 'Getout'. A list of possible getouts will be displayed.
    • To backup (undo) one call, press the 'F5' key.
    • To search for potential calls from the current formation, press 'Ctrl+F', or, from the menu, select 'Find' followed by 'Possible calls'. This particular function isn't very robust, and I am in the process of rewriting it, so please don't expect too much.

    Other notes:

    • The demo version of the program only allows 20 sequences per sequence database. Hence, if you write a lot of sequences, you will have to divide them up between several sequence databases.

If you have a question that is not answered here, feel free to E-mail Vic at
30-September-2023 12:42:27
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