Namesake power

Ways of getting BrainStorm to do unexpected or interesting things

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Namesake power

Post by alx » Mon Apr 24, 2006 3:11 am

Various people in the past have noted that they do not use namesakes and, in fact, can't really see the point in having them as a feature. I have written a couple of times on the way I use them for "versioning", i.e. maintaining various versions of the same text for different uses.

This time I would like to show a completely different use; the original concept was utilised in a real example and is currently behind a real website, albeit a Greek one. So I have attached a simplified version of the project, in English.

The concept is simple: Greece is divided into regions, regions into prefectures, and prefectures into mucipalities. Municipalities represent the basic cell of local governance and are responsible for a significant number of administrative functions. Our project involves research among municipalities to find out which are facing difficulties in those functions.

The main results of this research are flat spreadsheet lists of municipalities falling into certain categories.

In addition, there is a reference outline of the national structure, listing all municipalities under their respective prefectures and regions. This is the hierarchical list in the downloadable MainSample model below.

Now here comes the interesting bit: simply copying a list from a spreadsheet to the Brainstorm model will instantly provide a hierarchical view of the same data as namesakes to the national structure; even the order of the original flat list is irrelevant. As far as I know, no other software can do this automatically.

For example, municipalities in flat lists 1 & 2 within the MainSample model can be viewed as namesakes of the items in the hierarchical list.

We can go one step further by introducing a bit of redundancy; the two SubSample models contain the respective flat lists plus the hierarchical list. I have manually non-namesaked municipalities*. So, the hierarchical list shows a geographical view of the research outcome.

This is useful in order to present the information through means that do not support namesakes, like OPML; only the hierarchical listing is required.

In fact, you can see the end result (in Greek), exported to OPML and viewed through Grazr in our experimental website at
(Just click on the list image and wait for the Grazr pop-up window)

That's the lot; I'm sure one can figure a lot more applications.


*WIBNI: Wouldn't It Be Nice If this non-namesaked deletion could be automated through find/replace?

Download links:

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Re: Namesake power

Post by Lyndena3 » Fri Jan 13, 2012 4:01 am

On a cross country foaming trip in 1969 I had my brother shoot a slide of me by Keith, NE, along the UP east of North Platte, as I recall.

Second is Don Strack at Don, ID. That was early 70's. Both of us have less hair and I have more pounds and less giddyup.

I know one fan that named his two kids after sidings on the BN's Oregon Trunk.

How many of you have a location you can "relate" to?

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Re: Namesake power

Post by richardlaing » Wed Oct 31, 2012 6:27 am

I've tried to follow the links in your post but none of them work.
Can you help with this?

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