May 2000

Using NYC to Automatically Categorize Recipes

Assign recipes to categories manually if you like, but you can save considerable time and effort by using NYC's auto-assign capability.  To auto-assign recipes to categories:

1.  Select Recipes... Categorize Recipes..., or use the "chef hat" toolbar button with the A.
2.  Press the Go button in the Auto-Assign frame.

This will auto-categorize only your unassigned recipes.  If you want to categorize all recipes in your cookbook, then press the Unassign All... button before pressing the auto-assign Go button.  This will remove all recipe categorization and re-categorize according to your auto-assign criteria.

Customizing the Auto-Assign Feature to Categorize the Way You Do

You can customize how NYC auto-categorizes recipes by modifying NYC's keyword strings for this.  You may want to do this with the category assignment window open so you can study recipes left unassigned after an auto-assign operation.  To customize the auto-assign keys:

1.  Select Tools... Data Management... Categories tab... Customize Auto-Assign... button.
2.  Enter category strings in the left listbox.

These are strings that might possibly match categories throughout your cookbooks. It is best to use the singular rather than plural ("soup" instead of "soups"); NYC will check the plural form when looking for category matches.
3.  For each category string, enter keyword substrings in the right listbox.
Substrings should use parts of words to represent words that have alternative spellings or common mis-spellings.  For example, under category string "pasta", you might want to include "lasagn" so the auto-assign to work for both  "lasagna" and "lasagne".

To exclude certain substrings from causing a category assignment you don't want, prefix it with a minus sign
( "-").  For example, if you have a "cakes" category and a "cheesecakes" category in your cookbook, use "-cheesecake" as one of your substrings under category string "cake" to exclude "Primo Cheesecake" from your "cakes" category.

For short substrings that might be contained in another category, you may need to prefix or suffix the substring with a space as appropriate.  For example, under category string "beverages", you might want to include " tea" instead of "tea" so that "T-Bone Steak" won't get categorized as a beverage, but "Mint Tea" will.

4.  Press the Save button.

In this process, recipes will be automatically assigned to multiple cookbook categories that match your keyword criteria.

If you trash up your auto-assign keyword list beyond all hope, you can always press the "Defaults..." button to restore NYC's original set of category and keyword substrings.

Understanding NYC's Auto-Assign Feature

To help you use the auto-assign feature effectively, here is how it works:

1.  NYC looks for categories in your open cookbook that exactly match your auto-assign feature's category strings or their plural form.
2.  For each category match, NYC scans the names of your unassigned recipes for keyword substrings associated with each category string that matches a category in your cookbook.

This scan can include the recipe name and/or ingredients, depending on which checkboxes you have checked in the auto-assign frame.
3.  Any recipe whose name includes a keyword substring or the category string will be assigned to the matching category in your cookbook.

See previous NYC Tips

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