Most of these entries present the same data as Diana's index pages, just restructured into table form, but occasionally you will run across odd notation. What do they mean?
According to Diana's formatting guide, the first three lines of submissions should be:
Diana's script parses these three lines to create her index entries, and these same lines are the starting point for my script.
Unfortunately, not every story submitted follows this format. Where I've adjusted for missing or incorrect information, I've marked it as follows:
For some issues, I was able to come up with general rules for my script to handle corrections. In theory, an unusual case could lead a scripted rule to mangle correct data. However, there is no such case at the moment.
|Title [HTM]||Submitters of HTML files are also asked to follow the format, with the three lead lines in commented-out brackets. If the first line starts with DOCTYPE, however, that file clearly isn't following Diana's guide. So my script tosses the usual results, and looks for the first three reader-facing lines in the file, hoping they will be more relevant. (No data from META tags is used.)|
|Title [AA]||Many of the earliest submissions to Diana's library did not follow any standard format (perhaps predating Diana's guide), among them a set of stories that led off by proclaiming that they came from the Amazons Arena BBS. In this case, I had my script skip the first line and look for relevant information in the next several lines.|
|Author **||If the "summary" line starts with "by," yet the author line does not contain "by" (within the first six words), "@," "author:," or "from:," then the script assumes that the uploader mixed these two lines up, and reverses them.|
|Summary||||If the second line starts with "Chapter," "Part," or "or" (without containing "by," "@," "author:," or "from:"), then the script moves that text to the third line, and ends the string with "||." If text appears to the right, it means there was already text on the third line. This symbology is also used to join lines from the "Amazons Arena" stories.|
For most issues, unfortunately, I had to specifically direct my script to change an entry.
|Title [*+]||This line had to be inserted into the results, pushing existing lines down.|
|Title [!!]||The file doesn't follow the format guidelines at all, and there's nothing to do except discard the top three lines and replace them with the correct information.|
|Title //||In this case, the first line has been split at the "//" mark, and what is on the second line originally formed the end of the first line.|
|Author [IN]||Despite leaving no name on the designated line, the author gives it elsewhere in the file, typically in an introductory paragraph or on the last line.|
|Author [DD]||The author's name does not appear in the file, but has been deduced from other stories that do have a named author, generally by being in the same series. This is not foolproof. Sometimes another author writes a sequel (authorized or not) to a work, or an author has a collaborator on a series. Or a character with the same name may lead me to believe that stories are in a shared continuity, when in fact a real or fictional person I've never heard of has inspired multiple authors.|
|Author [*?]||As above, the author's name has been inferred, except for some reason I am more uncertain about my identification.|
|Author [*@]||No author name is directly mentioned in the file, but an e-mail is given that matches another story that includes both an author and that address.|
|Author [LK]||A webpage mentioned in the file, which I am linking to, has an author attribution.|
|Author [EX]||I ran across or tracked down some external source that has a claim or attribution of authorship for the story.|
|Author ||The story cites a webpage that probably had author information originally, but is now a dead link.|
|Author %%||The author and summary lines are actually switched. Similar to Author ** above, except it had to be added to the script as a special case.|
|Summary++||The text on the second line was actually more appropriate for the summary, and was moved to the third line, with "++" added at the end of the string. If text appears to the right, it means there was already text on the third line. Similar to Summary|| above, except it was added as a special case.|
|(There are two issues that my script handles without mention. One story tried to follow the correct format, but led off with an empty line, throwing everything off by one line. So my script starts with the first non-empty line. My script also strips Microsoft byte-order-marks (BOM) from the first line, which cause weird characters to display when they appear in the middle of a file instead of the very start.)|