[GNC] Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?

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[GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

foxylady337
> On 20 Mar 2019, at 10:52, Geert Janssens <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> Op woensdag 20 maart 2019 10:51:55 CET schreef Michael Hendry:
>> Which supports my contention that the use of the term “split” for a Ledger
>> Entry causes confusion.
>>
> Fair enough. As I said if there's a concise yet more clear term to use I'm
> happy to switch to it.
>
> Personally I'm not convinced yet "Ledger Entry" would be that replacement.
> Surely it would appeal to people with an accounting  background, but it
> doesn't feel like very intuitive for the casual user just wishing to keep
> track of its personal finances in GnuCash.

I agree, “Ledger Entry” is a bit clunky, but the casual user has to have (at least) a nodding acquaintance with double-entry bookkeeping to be able to use Gnucash.

If you look in any book-keeping primer, you’ll find a definition of a Ledger Entry, but you won’t find a “split” defined there.

> As English is not my native
> language that may be a translation issue though. However perhaps more informal
> terminology exists to describe subparts of a transaction ?

I haven’t come across such a term, but maybe I don’t get out enough?

>
> In addition it seems to me this thread has now evolved to discussing two
> distinct terminology issues:
> * the use of the  word "split" in itself
> * the use of the term "multi" in "multi-split" to mean "more than two" rather
> than "two or more”.

Indeed - I’ve altered the subject line.

>
>> Would anyone think it odd that a different process would be required when
>> importing a compound transaction than when importing a simple one?
>>
> I think that depends on the input source format: csv is generic and doesn't
> strictly define how to encode accounting data.
>
> GnuCash tries cater for as many formats as possible. So it offers a way to
> import csv files with only one transaction per line or a csv file where each
> line consists of one ledger entry/split and hence transaction can span
> multiple lines.

So the choice is between importing “Simple Transactions” and “Compound Transactions”, with a two-line simple transaction as a special case of a compound transaction.

>
> As GnuCash doesn't define the input sources (those come from banks, a
> spreadsheet, another accounting application,...) I don't see how that could be
> covered  with only one import interface.

Agreed - the user would need to specify the appropriate format at import time if the importing software can’t determine it by inspection.

>
> Regards,
>
> Geert

Regards,

Michael

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Re: [GNC] Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?

Derek Atkins-3
In reply to this post by foxylady337
Michael Hendry <[hidden email]> writes:

[snip]
> Which supports my contention that the use of the term “split” for a
> Ledger Entry causes confusion.
>
> Would anyone think it odd that a different process would be required
> when importing a compound transaction than when importing a simple
> one?

Importing or inputting?

Right now it's the same interface, in general.  The only difference is
whether or not you expand the view to show all the splits.

You CAN enter basic (two-split) transactions in the expanded view.  Or
you can enter them in the basic (one-line) view.  Either way works, and
for many users the basic view is easier to understand.

However, if entering a three-or-more-split (what we call "multi-split",
often shortened to "split") transaction, one MUST used the expanded
view.

> Regards,
>
> Michael

> Please remember to CC this list on all your replies.
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-derek

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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

Geert Janssens-4
In reply to this post by foxylady337
Op woensdag 20 maart 2019 12:35:40 CET schreef Michael Hendry:

> > On 20 Mar 2019, at 10:52, Geert Janssens <[hidden email]>
> > wrote:>
> > Op woensdag 20 maart 2019 10:51:55 CET schreef Michael Hendry:
> >> Would anyone think it odd that a different process would be required when
> >> importing a compound transaction than when importing a simple one?
> >
> > I think that depends on the input source format: csv is generic and
> > doesn't
> > strictly define how to encode accounting data.
> >
> > GnuCash tries cater for as many formats as possible. So it offers a way to
> > import csv files with only one transaction per line or a csv file where
> > each line consists of one ledger entry/split and hence transaction can
> > span multiple lines.
>
> So the choice is between importing “Simple Transactions” and “Compound
> Transactions”, with a two-line simple transaction as a special case of a
> compound transaction.

Right. So would "simple transaction" vs "compound transaction" be a good candidate for
better terminology ?

Regards,

Geert
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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

GnuCash - User mailing list
I like the terminology “simple” versus “compound”, but I do not understand what is meant by a “ two-line simple transaction as a special case of a compound transaction.”

David

> On Mar 21, 2019, at 4:40 PM, Geert Janssens <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> Op woensdag 20 maart 2019 12:35:40 CET schreef Michael Hendry:
>>> On 20 Mar 2019, at 10:52, Geert Janssens <[hidden email]>
>>> wrote:>
>>> Op woensdag 20 maart 2019 10:51:55 CET schreef Michael Hendry:
>>>> Would anyone think it odd that a different process would be required when
>>>> importing a compound transaction than when importing a simple one?
>>>
>>> I think that depends on the input source format: csv is generic and
>>> doesn't
>>> strictly define how to encode accounting data.
>>>
>>> GnuCash tries cater for as many formats as possible. So it offers a way to
>>> import csv files with only one transaction per line or a csv file where
>>> each line consists of one ledger entry/split and hence transaction can
>>> span multiple lines.
>>
>> So the choice is between importing “Simple Transactions” and “Compound
>> Transactions”, with a two-line simple transaction as a special case of a
>> compound transaction.
>
> Right. So would "simple transaction" vs "compound transaction" be a good candidate for
> better terminology ?
>
> Regards,
>
> Geert
> _______________________________________________
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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

Derek Atkins-3
"David T. via gnucash-user" <[hidden email]> writes:

> I like the terminology “simple” versus “compound”, but I do not
> understand what is meant by a “ two-line simple transaction as a
> special case of a compound transaction.”

This is what happens you expand a simple transaction (which has only 2
splits) by clicking on the "Show Splits" button, or change the View to
Split-ledger or Transaction Journal mode.  It will display as a compound
transaction but have only two lines (plus the blank spilt line).

> David

> Please remember to CC this list on all your replies.
> You can do this by using Reply-To-List or Reply-All.

-derek

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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

GnuCash - User mailing list
In reply to this post by Patrick-3
It seems circular to say that there is a distinction between a simple and compound transaction, and then say a simple transaction is a special case compound transaction. Then we're back at defining the difference between, say, a "split" transaction versus a "multi-split" transaction, which we're trying to move away from as justifiably confusing.

Calling one a "simple" transaction, and the others "compound" seems like enough. Perhaps the explanation of the technical aspects of this (i.e., the structure of a two sided simple, as opposed to an n-sided {n>2} compound transaction), could use the term "split," as it is defined by  Gnucash. This would disambiguate the use of the term "split," such that it would only be used for this specific case.

Regardless, I am still against the "Ledger entry" locution.

Perhaps we need a translation from American English to British English...

David

On March 21, 2019, at 7:47 PM, Derek Atkins <[hidden email]> wrote:

"David T. via gnucash-user" <[hidden email]> writes:

> I like the terminology “simple” versus “compound”, but I do not
> understand what is meant by a “ two-line simple transaction as a
> special case of a compound transaction.”

This is what happens you expand a simple transaction (which has only 2
splits) by clicking on the "Show Splits" button, or change the View to
Split-ledger or Transaction Journal mode.  It will display as a compound
transaction but have only two lines (plus the blank spilt line).

> David

> Please remember to CC this list on all your replies.
> You can do this by using Reply-To-List or Reply-All.

-derek

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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

Adrien Monteleone-2
I’m not sure ‘ledger entry’ is a prime choice either. If we were to consider the pen and paper world, this is done as a ‘journal entry’ but that entry always has two components (debit and credit) with at minimum two accounts involved. I’m going to dig up my accounting textbook and see how they reference the entries but I’m going to hazard an early guess that there is no mention of the individual parts of the transaction other than debit/credit.

Regards,
Adrien

> On Mar 21, 2019, at 9:46 AM, D via gnucash-user <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> It seems circular to say that there is a distinction between a simple and compound transaction, and then say a simple transaction is a special case compound transaction. Then we're back at defining the difference between, say, a "split" transaction versus a "multi-split" transaction, which we're trying to move away from as justifiably confusing.
>
> Calling one a "simple" transaction, and the others "compound" seems like enough. Perhaps the explanation of the technical aspects of this (i.e., the structure of a two sided simple, as opposed to an n-sided {n>2} compound transaction), could use the term "split," as it is defined by  Gnucash. This would disambiguate the use of the term "split," such that it would only be used for this specific case.
>
> Regardless, I am still against the "Ledger entry" locution.
>
> Perhaps we need a translation from American English to British English...
>
> David
>


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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

foxylady337
In reply to this post by GnuCash - User mailing list
> On 21 Mar 2019, at 14:46, D via gnucash-user <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> It seems circular to say that there is a distinction between a simple and compound transaction, and then say a simple transaction is a special case compound transaction. Then we're back at defining the difference between, say, a "split" transaction versus a "multi-split" transaction, which we're trying to move away from as justifiably confusing.

What I meant was that the simple transaction is treated as a special case in that it appears on one line in the relevant GnuCash register - and in the context of some CSV imports might come in as a single line.

>
> Calling one a "simple" transaction, and the others "compound" seems like enough. Perhaps the explanation of the technical aspects of this (i.e., the structure of a two sided simple, as opposed to an n-sided {n>2} compound transaction), could use the term "split," as it is defined by  Gnucash. This would disambiguate the use of the term "split," such that it would only be used for this specific case.
>
> Regardless, I am still against the "Ledger entry" locution.
>
> Perhaps we need a translation from American English to British English…

I should have thought “Ledger Entry” would work on either side of the Atlantic, if not it’s clearly unsuitable!

Michael

>
> David
>
> On March 21, 2019, at 7:47 PM, Derek Atkins <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> "David T. via gnucash-user" <[hidden email]> writes:
>
>> I like the terminology “simple” versus “compound”, but I do not
>> understand what is meant by a “ two-line simple transaction as a
>> special case of a compound transaction.”
>
> This is what happens you expand a simple transaction (which has only 2
> splits) by clicking on the "Show Splits" button, or change the View to
> Split-ledger or Transaction Journal mode.  It will display as a compound
> transaction but have only two lines (plus the blank spilt line).
>
>> David
>
>> Please remember to CC this list on all your replies.
>> You can do this by using Reply-To-List or Reply-All.
>
> -derek



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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

foxylady337
In reply to this post by Adrien Monteleone-2
> On 21 Mar 2019, at 15:15, Adrien Monteleone <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> I’m not sure ‘ledger entry’ is a prime choice either. If we were to consider the pen and paper world, this is done as a ‘journal entry’ but that entry always has two components (debit and credit) with at minimum two accounts involved. I’m going to dig up my accounting textbook and see how they reference the entries but I’m going to hazard an early guess that there is no mention of the individual parts of the transaction other than debit/credit.

Just checked my ancient primer, which starts a new business with a contribution of £3000 of capital from John Brown to the Cash Account.

Two ledger pages are created, one called “Cash Account” numbered “L1" and the other “Capital Account - John Brown” numbered “L2”.

On the Debit side of L1 there is a entry recording Capital of £3000 received from L2.

On the Credit side of L2 there is a corresponding entry of a transfer of Cash to L1.

These two separate but linked “Ledger Entries" make up the one “Transaction".

I’d be surprised if the overall process is different in the US, but the nomenclature might well diverge.

Regards,

Michael

>
> Regards,
> Adrien
>
>> On Mar 21, 2019, at 9:46 AM, D via gnucash-user <[hidden email]> wrote:
>>
>> It seems circular to say that there is a distinction between a simple and compound transaction, and then say a simple transaction is a special case compound transaction. Then we're back at defining the difference between, say, a "split" transaction versus a "multi-split" transaction, which we're trying to move away from as justifiably confusing.
>>
>> Calling one a "simple" transaction, and the others "compound" seems like enough. Perhaps the explanation of the technical aspects of this (i.e., the structure of a two sided simple, as opposed to an n-sided {n>2} compound transaction), could use the term "split," as it is defined by  Gnucash. This would disambiguate the use of the term "split," such that it would only be used for this specific case.
>>
>> Regardless, I am still against the "Ledger entry" locution.
>>
>> Perhaps we need a translation from American English to British English...
>>
>> David
>>
>
>
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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

GTI .H
In reply to this post by foxylady337
Perhaps this interest.

The meaning of "Split" was also addressed here:
http://gnucash.1415818.n4.nabble.com/GNC-Import-CSV-Multi-currency-tp4705312p4705345.html


--
Regards
GTI

Em qua, 20 de mar de 2019 às 08:36, Michael Hendry <[hidden email]>
escreveu:

> > On 20 Mar 2019, at 10:52, Geert Janssens <[hidden email]>
> wrote:
> >
> > Op woensdag 20 maart 2019 10:51:55 CET schreef Michael Hendry:
> >> Which supports my contention that the use of the term “split” for a
> Ledger
> >> Entry causes confusion.
> >>
> > Fair enough. As I said if there's a concise yet more clear term to use
> I'm
> > happy to switch to it.
> >
> > Personally I'm not convinced yet "Ledger Entry" would be that
> replacement.
> > Surely it would appeal to people with an accounting  background, but it
> > doesn't feel like very intuitive for the casual user just wishing to
> keep
> > track of its personal finances in GnuCash.
>
> I agree, “Ledger Entry” is a bit clunky, but the casual user has to have
> (at least) a nodding acquaintance with double-entry bookkeeping to be able
> to use Gnucash.
>
> If you look in any book-keeping primer, you’ll find a definition of a
> Ledger Entry, but you won’t find a “split” defined there.
>
> > As English is not my native
> > language that may be a translation issue though. However perhaps more
> informal
> > terminology exists to describe subparts of a transaction ?
>
> I haven’t come across such a term, but maybe I don’t get out enough?
>
> >
> > In addition it seems to me this thread has now evolved to discussing two
> > distinct terminology issues:
> > * the use of the  word "split" in itself
> > * the use of the term "multi" in "multi-split" to mean "more than two"
> rather
> > than "two or more”.
>
> Indeed - I’ve altered the subject line.
>
> >
> >> Would anyone think it odd that a different process would be required
> when
> >> importing a compound transaction than when importing a simple one?
> >>
> > I think that depends on the input source format: csv is generic and
> doesn't
> > strictly define how to encode accounting data.
> >
> > GnuCash tries cater for as many formats as possible. So it offers a way
> to
> > import csv files with only one transaction per line or a csv file where
> each
> > line consists of one ledger entry/split and hence transaction can span
> > multiple lines.
>
> So the choice is between importing “Simple Transactions” and “Compound
> Transactions”, with a two-line simple transaction as a special case of a
> compound transaction.
>
> >
> > As GnuCash doesn't define the input sources (those come from banks, a
> > spreadsheet, another accounting application,...) I don't see how that
> could be
> > covered  with only one import interface.
>
> Agreed - the user would need to specify the appropriate format at import
> time if the importing software can’t determine it by inspection.
>
> >
> > Regards,
> >
> > Geert
>
> Regards,
>
> Michael
>
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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

Derek Atkins-3
In reply to this post by GnuCash - User mailing list
D <[hidden email]> writes:

> It seems circular to say that there is a distinction between a simple
> and compound transaction, and then say a simple transaction is a
> special case compound transaction. Then we're back at defining the
> difference between, say, a "split" transaction versus a "multi-split"
> transaction, which we're trying to move away from as justifiably
> confusing.

The difference is "exactly 2 splits" vs "more than 2 splits".

Simple tranaction: exactly 2 splits.  The basic view mode in the
ledger lets you enter these simply, and the Transfer field shows the
"other" account.

Compound transaction: > 2 splits.  The Transfer field shows "Split
Transaction" and you must expand the transaction to see the other
accounts.

Those ARE the definitions.  If you don't like them, well, I'm sorry, but
it's like saying you don't like the sky being Blue and would prefer if
it was purple with pink polka dots.

The fact remains, a simple transaction *is* a special case of a compound
transaction as far as the UI is concerned.   If you expand a simple
transaction you'll see both splits.

> Calling one a "simple" transaction, and the others "compound" seems
> like enough. Perhaps the explanation of the technical aspects of this
> (i.e., the structure of a two sided simple, as opposed to an n-sided
> {n>2} compound transaction), could use the term "split," as it is
> defined by Gnucash. This would disambiguate the use of the term
> "split," such that it would only be used for this specific case.

I am fine with that approach.  In my mind it's always clear, tho, that
"split transaction" implies "compound transaction", and "transaction
splits" are the individual entries that tie the transaction to each
account.  But whatever, I've only been using these terms within gnucash
for 20 years now.  What do I know?  :)

> Regardless, I am still against the "Ledger entry" locution.

Why?

-derek
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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

foxylady337
> On 22 Mar 2019, at 15:10, Derek Atkins <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> D <[hidden email]> writes:
>
>> It seems circular to say that there is a distinction between a simple
>> and compound transaction, and then say a simple transaction is a
>> special case compound transaction. Then we're back at defining the
>> difference between, say, a "split" transaction versus a "multi-split"
>> transaction, which we're trying to move away from as justifiably
>> confusing.
>
> The difference is "exactly 2 splits" vs "more than 2 splits".
>
> Simple tranaction: exactly 2 splits.  The basic view mode in the
> ledger lets you enter these simply, and the Transfer field shows the
> "other" account.
>
> Compound transaction: > 2 splits.  The Transfer field shows "Split
> Transaction" and you must expand the transaction to see the other
> accounts.
>
> Those ARE the definitions.  If you don't like them, well, I'm sorry, but
> it's like saying you don't like the sky being Blue and would prefer if
> it was purple with pink polka dots.
>
> The fact remains, a simple transaction *is* a special case of a compound
> transaction as far as the UI is concerned.   If you expand a simple
> transaction you'll see both splits.
>
>> Calling one a "simple" transaction, and the others "compound" seems
>> like enough. Perhaps the explanation of the technical aspects of this
>> (i.e., the structure of a two sided simple, as opposed to an n-sided
>> {n>2} compound transaction), could use the term "split," as it is
>> defined by Gnucash. This would disambiguate the use of the term
>> "split," such that it would only be used for this specific case.
>
> I am fine with that approach.  In my mind it's always clear, tho, that
> "split transaction" implies "compound transaction", and "transaction
> splits" are the individual entries that tie the transaction to each
> account.  But whatever, I've only been using these terms within gnucash
> for 20 years now.  What do I know?  :)

Well, and with the greatest respect, could it be that you’ve grown up with it so you don’t see the potential for confusion?

To recap: I’ve been using Gnucash for 9 years, and I’ve managed to cope with “splits” without looking at the definitions too closely.

I don’t use the CSV importer, and it wasn’t until there was a thread about multi-splits and the CSV importer that I tried to get my head around the nomenclature - and found it confusing.

To me, the term “split transaction” implies "a transaction that has been split” as opposed to “a transaction that is made up from splits”, and it says nothing about whether the transaction itself is Simple or Compound.

Although a molecule of carbon monoxide is made up from an atom each of carbon and oxygen, I wouldn’t refer to either of these atoms as a split.


>
>> Regardless, I am still against the "Ledger entry" locution.
>
> Why?

Good question!

The ledger entry is the atom from which transactions are made; the problem is that GC’s user interface (very helpfully) facilitates the direct creation of molecules.

>
> -derek

I realise that the concept of splits is in-with-the-bricks of Gnucash, and that it wouldn’t be easy to disengage from its use. Now that I have worked out what it means, it shouldn’t give me any more trouble.

I should probably say no more.

Regards,

Michael


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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

GnuCash - User mailing list
In reply to this post by Patrick-3
If I might comment on this topic, might thoughts are below Michael's...

----------------------------------------------------------------------

> On 22 Mar 2019, at 15:10, Derek Atkins <[hidden email]> wrote:
>
> D <[hidden email]> writes:
>
>> It seems circular to say that there is a distinction between a simple
>> and compound transaction, and then say a simple transaction is a
>> special case compound transaction. Then we're back at defining the
>> difference between, say, a "split" transaction versus a "multi-split"
>> transaction, which we're trying to move away from as justifiably
>> confusing.
>
> The difference is "exactly 2 splits" vs "more than 2 splits".
>
> Simple tranaction: exactly 2 splits.  The basic view mode in the
> ledger lets you enter these simply, and the Transfer field shows the
> "other" account.
>
> Compound transaction: > 2 splits.  The Transfer field shows "Split
> Transaction" and you must expand the transaction to see the other
> accounts.
>
> Those ARE the definitions.  If you don't like them, well, I'm sorry, but
> it's like saying you don't like the sky being Blue and would prefer if
> it was purple with pink polka dots.
>
> The fact remains, a simple transaction *is* a special case of a compound
> transaction as far as the UI is concerned.  If you expand a simple
> transaction you'll see both splits.
>
>> Calling one a "simple" transaction, and the others "compound" seems
>> like enough. Perhaps the explanation of the technical aspects of this
>> (i.e., the structure of a two sided simple, as opposed to an n-sided
>> {n>2} compound transaction), could use the term "split," as it is
>> defined by Gnucash. This would disambiguate the use of the term
>> "split," such that it would only be used for this specific case.
>
> I am fine with that approach.  In my mind it's always clear, tho, that
> "split transaction" implies "compound transaction", and "transaction
> splits" are the individual entries that tie the transaction to each
> account.  But whatever, I've only been using these terms within gnucash
> for 20 years now.  What do I know?  :)

Well, and with the greatest respect, could it be that you?ve grown up with it so you don?t see the potential for confusion?

To recap: I?ve been using Gnucash for 9 years, and I?ve managed to cope with ?splits? without looking at the definitions too closely.

I don?t use the CSV importer, and it wasn?t until there was a thread about multi-splits and the CSV importer that I tried to get my head around the nomenclature - and found it confusing.

To me, the term ?split transaction? implies "a transaction that has been split? as opposed to ?a transaction that is made up from splits?, and it says nothing about whether the transaction itself is Simple or Compound.

Although a molecule of carbon monoxide is made up from an atom each of carbon and oxygen, I wouldn?t refer to either of these atoms as a split.


>
>> Regardless, I am still against the "Ledger entry" locution.
>
> Why?

Good question!

The ledger entry is the atom from which transactions are made; the problem is that GC?s user interface (very helpfully) facilitates the direct creation of molecules.

>
> -derek

I realise that the concept of splits is in-with-the-bricks of Gnucash, and that it wouldn?t be easy to disengage from its use. Now that I have worked out what it means, it shouldn?t give me any more trouble.

I should probably say no more.

Regards,

Michael

------------------------------

I agree with Michael's points.A simple transaction consists of just one split but two parts, and saying (pretending) that a simple transaction has two splits is misleading.
I see no problems with the use of terms like 'simple transaction' (with one split and two parts) or with 'compound transactions' (with 2+ splits and 3+ parts), but it doesn't make sense to refer to the parts as splits. Why not just use the term 'parts' or 'transaction parts' or even invent a new word 'transparts'; (after all, GnuCash is a made up word too.)
Just because GnuCash developers previously defined the 'parts' of a transaction as 'splits' doesn't mean that the definition shouldn't be changed to make it clearer.
Kind regards,Alan

   
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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

Derek Atkins-3
Hi Alan,

On Fri, March 22, 2019 3:33 pm, aeg via gnucash-user wrote:
> If I might comment on this topic, might thoughts are below Michael's...
>
[snip]
> I agree with Michael's points.A simple transaction consists of just one
> split but two parts, and saying (pretending) that a simple transaction has
> two splits is misleading.

You are confusing the VERB split -- the act of splitting two things into
pieces -- and the NOUN split, which are the results of the splitting.
While you are correct that a simple transaction has been split(v) only
once, that does not imply that it is made of one one split(n).

It is absolutely reasonable to use the same word to mean (slightly)
different things as a verb and as a noun.  It's also quite clear from
context (at least most of the time) whether you are using split(v) or
split(n).

When you say "split the wood in two" you are using split(v), not split(n).
 Calling each piece of the result a split(n) is perfectly reasonable,
which is what GnuCash does.

Have you ever heard the term "wine split"?  It refers to a 187ml bottle of
wine, which is the result of splitting up a 750ml bottle into 4 parts, or
a 350ml bottle into two.   Are you going to argue that a wine split (which
is yet another term-of-art) is wrong and go tilt at the wine industry
windmill next?   ;-)

> I see no problems with the use of terms like 'simple transaction' (with
> one split and two parts) or with 'compound transactions' (with 2+ splits
> and 3+ parts), but it doesn't make sense to refer to the parts as splits.

Why not?  split(n) is a perfectly reasonable phrase.  And again you are
confusing split(v) with split(n), which is going to cause even more
confusion.

> Why not just use the term 'parts' or 'transaction parts' or even invent a
> new word 'transparts'; (after all, GnuCash is a made up word too.)
> Just because GnuCash developers previously defined the 'parts' of a
> transaction as 'splits' doesn't mean that the definition shouldn't be
> changed to make it clearer.

The data file contains "Splits".  Having different terms in the UI vs the
underlying data is a way to cause irreperable brain damage down the road
when someone not alive today becomes a developer in a couple decades and
tries to mentally map a Foobob to a Split and doesn't understand why the
name was changed.

Not saying we CAN'T do it, but seriously, how many words in the English
language have both a verb and a noun and can mean slightly different
things?  (cheating answer:  many).

Have a good weekend!

> Kind regards,Alan

> Please remember to CC this list on all your replies.
> You can do this by using Reply-To-List or Reply-All.

-derek

--
       Derek Atkins                 617-623-3745
       [hidden email]             www.ihtfp.com
       Computer and Internet Security Consultant

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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

Bucky Carr

Derek, I think you have defined the reason that the term 'split'
should remain in use as it presently is in GNUcash.


On 3/22/2019 2:00 PM, Derek Atkins wrote:

>
> You are confusing the VERB split -- the act of splitting two things into
> pieces -- and the NOUN split, which are the results of the splitting.
> While you are correct that a simple transaction has been split(v) only
> once, that does not imply that it is made of one one split(n).
>
> It is absolutely reasonable to use the same word to mean (slightly)
> different things as a verb and as a noun.  It's also quite clear from
> context (at least most of the time) whether you are using split(v) or
> split(n).

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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

Geert Janssens-4
In reply to this post by Derek Atkins-3
Op vrijdag 22 maart 2019 21:00:02 CET schreef Derek Atkins:

> > Why not just use the term 'parts' or 'transaction parts' or even invent a
> > new word 'transparts'; (after all, GnuCash is a made up word too.)
> > Just because GnuCash developers previously defined the 'parts' of a
> > transaction as 'splits' doesn't mean that the definition shouldn't be
> > changed to make it clearer.
>
> The data file contains "Splits".  Having different terms in the UI vs the
> underlying data is a way to cause irreperable brain damage down the road
> when someone not alive today becomes a developer in a couple decades and
> tries to mentally map a Foobob to a Split and doesn't understand why the
> name was changed.
>
This is a valid point. It only makes sense to change the term if it happens on all levels. That's
what I hinted at in one of my first replies (that it would be hard to make this change and
potentially create an extra burden on our translators).

> Not saying we CAN'T do it, but seriously, how many words in the English
> language have both a verb and a noun and can mean slightly different
> things?  (cheating answer:  many).
>
There are many. The confusion however comes from the fact that split (noun) is ambiguous in
itself. It sometimes means the parts you get after splitting something (like in your wine
example), and sometimes it refers to the gap between the pieces instead. The latter meaning is
clearly the more obvious one for Micheal and Alan. So if we can avoid this confusion by using
another term that could make gnucash easier to learn.

Pondering it some more among a few developers the term "entry" without the explicit "ledger"
comes up as the most likely alternative so far. It can be disambiguated in certain contexts with
account, invoice, bill,...

Regards,

Geert
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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

GnuCash - User mailing list



 
#yiv5052015078 p, #yiv5052015078 li {white-space:pre-wrap;}Op vrijdag 22 maart 2019 21:00:02 CET schreef Derek Atkins:> > Why not just use the term 'parts' or 'transaction parts' or even invent a> > new word 'transparts'; (after all, GnuCash is a made up word too.)> > Just because GnuCash developers previously defined the 'parts' of a> > transaction as 'splits' doesn't mean that the definition shouldn't be> > changed to make it clearer.> > The data file contains "Splits". Having different terms in the UI vs the> underlying data is a way to cause irreperable brain damage down the road> when someone not alive today becomes a developer in a couple decades and> tries to mentally map a Foobob to a Split and doesn't understand why the> name was changed.> This is a valid point. It only makes sense to change the term if it happens on all levels. That's what I hinted at in one of my first replies (that it would be hard to make this change and potentially create an extra burden on our translators). > Not saying we CAN'T do it, but seriously, how many words in the English> language have both a verb and a noun and can mean slightly different> things? (cheating answer: many).> There are many. The confusion however comes from the fact that split (noun) is ambiguous in itself. It sometimes means the parts you get after splitting something (like in your wine example), and sometimes it refers to the gap between the pieces instead. The latter meaning is clearly the more obvious one for Micheal and Alan. So if we can avoid this confusion by using another term that could make gnucash easier to learn. Pondering it some more among a few developers the term "entry" without the explicit "ledger" comes up as the most likely alternative so far. It can be disambiguated in certain contexts with account, invoice, bill,... Regards, Geert


Yes, I take the points you both make and Geert, yes, the term 'entry' seems like a good alternative for better clarity.
Alan  
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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

Liz
In reply to this post by Geert Janssens-4
On Fri, 22 Mar 2019 21:21:52 +0100
Geert Janssens <[hidden email]> wrote:

> > Not saying we CAN'T do it, but seriously, how many words in the
> > English language have both a verb and a noun and can mean slightly
> > different things?  (cheating answer:  many).
> >  
> There are many. The confusion however comes from the fact that split
> (noun) is ambiguous in itself. It sometimes means the parts you get
> after splitting something (like in your wine example), and sometimes
> it refers to the gap between the pieces instead. The latter meaning
> is clearly the more obvious one for Micheal and Alan. So if we can
> avoid this confusion by using another term that could make gnucash
> easier to learn.

Geert
We can't fix English, it's a moving target.



“When I use a word,’ Humpty Dumpty said in rather a scornful tone, ‘it
means just what I choose it to mean — neither more nor less.’

’The question is,’ said Alice, ‘whether you can make words mean so many
different things.’

’The question is,’ said Humpty Dumpty, ‘which is to be master — that’s
all.”

― Lewis Carroll, Through the Looking Glass
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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

GnuCash - User mailing list
In reply to this post by Derek Atkins-3
Hi Derek,
Thank you for your explanation. I've given this further thought overnight and, although I understand your thinking, your analogy has helped me see where confusion might have arisen.

When you say "split the wood in two" you are using split(v), not split(n).Calling each piece of the result a split(n) is perfectly reasonable,which is what GnuCash does.

If I have a pile of logs that I want to use as firewood, it might be necessary to split(v) them first. I then have a pile of split logs where "split" is being used as an adjective. "Split logs" in the complete term whereas you have chosen to abbreviate it to split(n), which makes no sense if used on its own, as in "I have a pile of splits".

It appears that that is what has happened to the use of split in GnuCash and "split transaction" has been abbreviated to "split", which long-term users have got used to it. Geert's suggested use of the word "entry" for the individual parts of a transaction would surely make sense to all users and still allow for the use of "split entry transaction" when referring to the whole transaction.
Kind regards,
Alan
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Re: [GNC] The Meaning of Split (previously Example of multi-split feature of CSV importer?)

foxylady337
In reply to this post by GnuCash - User mailing list
> On 22 Mar 2019, at 19:33, aeg via gnucash-user <[hidden email]> wrote:


------------------------------

I agree with Michael's points.A simple transaction consists of just one split but two parts, and saying (pretending) that a simple transaction has two splits is misleading.
I see no problems with the use of terms like 'simple transaction' (with one split and two parts) or with 'compound transactions' (with 2+ splits and 3+ parts), but it doesn't make sense to refer to the parts as splits. Why not just use the term 'parts' or 'transaction parts' or even invent a new word 'transparts'; (after all, GnuCash is a made up word too.)
Just because GnuCash developers previously defined the 'parts' of a transaction as 'splits' doesn't mean that the definition shouldn't be changed to make it clearer.
Kind regards,Alan


_______________________________________________

Thanks for your support, Alan,

and also for the fact that your response demonstrates the incomprehensibility of the terminology!

QED

You say “A simple transaction consists of just one split…” This is not the case - a simple transaction involves two splits. Similarly, a compound transaction involves 3 or more splits.

The situation isn’t helped by the use of the term “Split Transaction” which appears in a register where there is a transaction with more than 2 splits. Does this mean (using Split as a noun) that the transaction is made up from splits, or (using it as a past participle) that the transaction is in a state of having been split. Replacing this with “Compound Transaction” would make it clear that there is more to see while not having any fundamental affect on underlying code or data.

Regards,

Michael




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