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  1. #1
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    Searching records with accents or diacritics (A2K)

    I am involved in the creating of an index which will contain a number of records (names) which have accented characters such as

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    Re: Searching records with accents or diacritics (A2K)

    One strategy we have used that you might consider is to create a special search field where you replace accented characters by their "un-accented" equivalent. That typically involves some sort of process that creates the search field content when a record is added or edited, and then the search process works with the field and finds all names that match the criteria specified by the user. We've used that approach successfully with as many as 100,000 records. It also solves issues such as the "O'Kelley" and "mac Donald" surnames that often present challenges. If you want more details, post back.
    Wendell

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    Re: Searching records with accents or diacritics (A2K)

    Wendell's suggestion of saving an "unaccented" version of name is probably simplest approach for this. The attached text file has a couple of sample functions that may or may not be useful in conversion of names or other text string to "normal" characters. See ReplaceDiacriticalMarks function, which replaces characters with diacritical marks - acute accents, grave accents, circumflexes ("hat" symbol), cedillas (the little hook on a "C"), tildes, umlauts (small double-dots, popular with heavy metal bands), & so on with unaccented equivalent: Example:

    ? ReplaceDiacriticalMarks("H
    Attached Files Attached Files

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    Re: Searching records with accents or diacritics (A2K)

    Mark,

    I don

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    Re: Searching records with accents or diacritics (A2K)

    Thanks Wendell and Mark. I suspected that I might have to go down that track, but it will be at a high cost to the database size, since it effectively means adding a new field the same length as the original field. However, as all the indexes can use the "plain" field, there should not be an increase in index size. Thanks for the code, Mark. I like Wendell's idea of using it to handle apostrophes, as well, and that will be a useful extension.
    Geoffrey

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    Re: Searching records with accents or diacritics (A2K)

    For the Diacritically-challenged, here is a useful link:

    thefreedictionary.com Encylopedia - Diacritical

    This article will tell you more than you need to know about diacritical marks & symbols (I can never remember which accent is "grave" and which is "acute") and their usage in various languages. I found it interesting that in Vietnamese, you can combine up to three diacritical marks in a single character....

    HTH

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