Text to be displayed in Break Slot

Started by S Chandrasekar, October 20, 2019, 05:13:03 PM

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S Chandrasekar

It is preferable to have some texts like 'SHORT INTERVAL' or 'LUNCH INTERVAL' or 'ASSEMBLY' in the break slots rather than display merely an "-X-".
I have attached a timetable which was generated through FET but the HTML version is enhanced in EXCEL so that I have a text "INTERVAL" in the break slot.
Is it possible to have this facility in FET itself?

Liviu Lalescu

This suggestion is already in the TODO, item #68. It is complicated, because of the many possibilities of breaks.

As we discussed by private messages, I will try to make you a custom version for your exact situation.

Volker Dirr

I think it will look very bad in a custom version, because:
- the pdf used span for the break cells. it is difficult to detect that autoamticaly
- he even used only "Inverall" and not "Short Invervall" or "Luch Intervall" which are much longer

Since fet will print it in each single cell it will look awful, because:
- it will repeat many times
- you will get size problems, since the other words (teachers, subjects, ...) are much smaller / shortcuts.
So you write a lunch full while using shortcuts for the very important break?!

You will get problems if you print that on paper.
Also if you will print a large paper for all teachers in the teachers room it will be even much more critical because of the size. You might better even think about not adding the break hour at all.

Liviu Lalescu

Volker, I did not yet look at your code. Is it difficult to span the text "INTERVAL" over the whole week?

Volker Dirr

in my opinion there are at least 2 critical things:

There difficult/slow part will be to detect that, so cheking if you can do the span or not; it might be not the full line also.
Also the span might be in 2 directions. Once into x and once into y-Axis.

in worst case it will be in both directions, but html can't do both at the same time.

In my opinion the break should be deleted at all. it is only wasting space (and slows down generating).
I am currently reading again a book about designing software and critical bugs of software developers. It says:
"Don't give the users what they ask for, give them what they need.". In my opinion he need to delete. He also didn't add "home" in the hours before the first hour and he didn't add "spare time" in the hours after the last one. So why adding other stuff into slots where they have "free"?

Liviu Lalescu

S Chandrasekar, could you tell me in which HTML timetables do you need this?

S Chandrasekar

Dear Liviu Lalescu

I am deeply hurt by the harsh verse used by Mr Volker Dirr. You could simply and politely say that it cannot be done. I will accept and comprehend the difficulties. Meanwhile, in our country the timetable is this simple - which does not have any "Home" or "Spare Time" slots. The way the timetables used for more than 100 years in our country is the one which I can show to you.
Never mind. As Mr Volker Dirr asked you can delete me. You must have read his verse "he need to delete".
Forget about me and my suggestion. But, remember all of your competitive timetable software simply have this facility without any hassle. So, it is a simple request. Is it not?
But, "Don't give the users what they ask for, give them what they need."

Thanking for spending your valuable time with me.

Volker Dirr

I am sorry if it sounds harsh. That wasn't my purpose.

It can't be done easily. I might be done for a special case - Schools like yours.
But it will fail for a lot of other schools. For example if the lunch time flips between 2 hours or if the school use smaller fet "hours". In that case you "need" to span in both directions and that is impossible with html.

But you will also get a lot of disadvantages by that. Like small tables only, since unneeded information  is printed in the table. Not fitting breaks in the teacherS table print for the teachers room, ...

(Extrem example: maybe don't read it: Just because it was done 100 years ago it doesn't mean it is correct. People killed each other even 1000 years ago. So that is fine/needed?)

So the question is:
Do you need it? What about the disadvanatges? Don't you care about them?
The book i was citing is about software developers and about angry users, since the users ask for stuff and the coders sadly coded the requests! But the software wasn't useable anymore by the users requests. So a lot of software projects fails, just because the coders done what the customers said. There are a lot of examples like that. Users sadly don't always think carefully about their whishes. Like every guy everywhere, even me. But i (and the author of the book) try to avoid it by carefully thinking before doing something.
We might do it, but once again: What about the disadvanatges i told you about? Don't you think they are critical? What do you think why is your request needed?

So i hope you will now call some advanatges of your request, since in that case i might think again about that. But i don't want to spent hours of coding/working into your request if i can't see an advantage.

Volker Dirr

By the way it is not only written in that book, also in many other sources/book.

Also for example here:
QuotePlanning is an objective of each and every activity, where we want to discover things that belong to the project. An important task in creating a software program is extracting the requirements or requirements analysis.[6] Customers typically have an abstract idea of what they want as an end result but do not know what software should do. Skilled and experienced software engineers recognize incomplete, ambiguous, or even contradictory requirements at this point. Frequently demonstrating live code may help reduce the risk that the requirements are incorrect.

So let's do planning:
Lets check the advanatges and disadvanatges of that request. Then we can think about how to do it. (Since we must at least deside if you want to span the breaks horizontal or vertical of the break spans in both directions, since html can do only one direction, but not both at the same time.)
So are there more advantages?
Should we span horizontal or vertical if we can span in both directions?

Liviu Lalescu

Mr. S Chandrasekar: Volker was talking about you deleting the break, not you from the forum. So please let me know what timetables would you like customized in your exact timetables.

Volker: Mr. S Chandrasekar and I were talking about a customization just for him.

Volker Dirr

oh... sorry, not deleting from the forum, i just talked about the break hours. Please stay here.

Just to be sure also the "give them what they need" doesn't mean if someone ask for a glas of water give him only half of it. It mean you must ask him why he need that, since instead of the glas of water he might need a fountain or ... So it doesn't mean to give him as less as possible, it mean give him the correct stuff (which might be much more!)

hmmm... I don't like all the custom versions, we have already too many of them. Adding such a custom version is maybe around 2 hours coding, 1 hour testing and uploading, then we do the samestuff several times for other custom versions... so such a custom version mean we overall work again for more then 1 day. We should think about implementing it correct for all users in the default version. But in my opinion it is a) difficult and b) unneeded. But i might have missed some other advantages.

Liviu Lalescu

It was my offer to create such a custom version. I thought it is not that difficult. I can try, but I am not sure I can unite the breaks to span over the whole week.

Volker Dirr

hmm.. an other thing we are not allowed to forget: (and should maybe even check right now!)
what about breaks in subjects and room timetables, since in fact it might be possible to place an activity with a subject and a room into a break. So is the output still fine in that case? We shouldn't span in that tables.

Volker Dirr

hmm... Liviu, i fear there is a bug.
reading the fet gui: A break cares only about students and teachers.
but i can't place an activity without students and teachers into a break.

So there are only 2 possibilities:
a) the algorithm is wrong, since it should do that
b) the description in the gui is wrong, since a break cares about more then just the teachers and students

Liviu Lalescu

The algorithm cares about everything for a break. But the GUI is not wrong, since it only writes that teachers' and students' gaps are not counted in a break.