Preparing for MarcEdit 6.0

By reeset / On / In MarcEdit

This summer, I have been spending a lot of my free development preparing MarcEdit to make the transition from 5.9 to 6.0.  This will be a big update, and at the same time, and update that I’m not sure folks will necessarily see many of the changes.  But maybe that will be a good thing, I don’t know.  So, a couple of notes about the update.

User Interface Changes

So, MarcEdit has been around for a very long time – 1999 to be exact.  Because of that, there are some very old tools in the application…tools who’s interface haven’t been updated in 6-7 years – even if the underlying functionality has changed.  Well, I’m taking the time to refresh a number of the forms found within the application.  The places where most users will see these changes are in the Delimited Text Translator (the Windows 2000 Wizard interface is going away) and the MARC Tools interface.  There are a few others that will see updates; but these are the two that you’ll see for sure.

Delimited Text Translator (screen 1)

image

Delimited Text Translator (screen 2)

image

MARC Tools Revisions (proposed)

image

These are proposed changes – but are being done to make the look more consistent as well as make some screens easier to work with (the MARC Tools window for instance was getting really long).

Bug fixes

For two months, I’ve been going through my internal ticketing system, and closing every open issue.  When I post this update, every bug report that has been saved, will be closed.  This has required rewriting a lot of code within the application – which for many older functions – is definitely a good thing.  At present – this means that 13 bug tickets have been closed.  All are minor, with general workarounds – but this should have a practical impact for folks.

New features

At present, 7 enhancements/new features have been added to the program.  The remaining change to be completed (if it’s completed) will be the re-inclusion of MARCCompare (or RobertCompare as I fondly referred to it).  This is a specialized diff tool for comparing MARC records that is smarter than just a plain diff because it takes into account MARC structured data.

Cross Platform Work

One of the pseudo supported options in MarcEdit has been the ability to run the tool on non-windows platforms.  Being written in C#, the program runs fine under MONO on both Linux and Mac systems.  However, this has traditionally worked much better for Linux users because: MONO was created by a bunch of people on Linux, and I work a lot on Linux so I would test there.  One of the big efforts this time around has been to try and identify where UI issues or other issues exist and put solid support for folks interested in working with MarcEdit within non-Windows environments.  The tool will likely always run best there – but I’d like to provide a version with installers, for both Linux and Mac systems and 6.0 will represent the first attempt at that.  I’ll admit, I have some trepidation around doing this and providing more formalized support because I don’t own a Mac so I won’t get to test and do the kind of dedicated development as I might like – but I have regular enough access to one that I’m willing to give it a go.  At the very least – users will get a much easier process for installing and that at least is a win.

Go live date

This is still in the air a little bit.  I’d hoped for early July but my wife and I are buying a house, I’m doing a little travelling for work – so this is definitely pushing things back.  But ideally, these changes will start being rolled out in July 2014.

If you have questions – feel free to give me a holler.

-tr

5 thoughts on “Preparing for MarcEdit 6.0

  1. Looks really good, Terry. Simplifying the MARC Tools db is a great idea.

    I can kind of see how the DTT is going to work but I don’t quite get what the “Arguments” section means. I think I will need to see it in action.

    Can I also submit another request for some way to edit fixed field data with the Edit Field Data tool?

    b

  2. Ben,

    Sure — if you have a suggestion, let me know. I’ll add it to the ticket list and see if I can roll it into 6.0. In terms of the Arguments list — this is the saved output of each mapped item. As you define each column to MARC, it placed that argument into the list so you can do actions on them later (like join fields, group them, etc).

    –tr

  3. Terry,

    Thanks for all your continued development that has made MarcEdit irreplaceable in our Librarian’s toolkit.
    Would you be able to make the task list interface more flexible with any of this development? I find myself always having to resize the windows when I open them in order to see the content of my tasks. Whether it’s the listing of tasks (which has gotten to be extensive by now) or actually viewing the content of the task itself.
    I also remotely work on several PCs at the same time, in order to process multiple files, and use the ‘robocopy’ command to keep all my tasks up-to-date on each machine. Being able to set MarcEdit to store those types of files on a network drive would allow various PCs to share tasks.

    Just a few thoughts.

    Thanks!
    Tim

    1. Tim,

      I went ahead and setup the program so it remembers window size and position for these windows. This should solve the UI (or at least, mitigate it) issue. The other question isn’t quite so straightforward. I’ll need to think about it.

      tr