To load a master list from a file of comma-separated values (CSV), dBASE (DBF) file, Excel spreadsheet (.xls), a table in a web page (HTML table) or from a relational database, you must identify the source of the data. In most cases you will specify a file on your computer, but for web tables, you may locate on the internet the page that contains the table. File names must conform to some conventions:
If you select a CSV file, a DBF file or a relational database, skip down to Select and identify columns.
A single Excel file may contain several sheets. If you select an Excel spreadsheet, you will need to specify which sheet within the file contains the data that you want. Sheets will be presented as if they are tabbed file folders. Select the tab for the sheet that you wish to use, and press "Forward".
Proceed to Select and identify columns.
If you specify a web page that contains a table, you will select the table from within the web page. You can select the entire table or a subset of the table. The web page will be displayed. Click on cells in opposite corners of the table (or subset).
In the example to the right, the user scrolled to the bottom of the table and clicked on the cell that contained the last family name. Then, she scrolled to the top and clicked on "Tinamou, Great". Entries in the table then turned green.
The last step in preparing the data is to identify columns and to clean up the data.
You must identify columns that contain family names, scientific names and common names. Scientific names may occupy a single column, or genera and specific epithets may occupy separate columns. To identify columns, click on the column headers, and a menu will appear that allows you to select the type of the column on which you just clicked.
In the example to the right, the first column is not used, and genera and specific epithets appear in separate columns.
You may need to edit the data to clean it up. Cleaning usually entails deleting extraneous rows at the top and bottom of the table. Don't forget to delete the first row if column names were imported as the first row of the table. You may also edit cell values.
After data have been edited and columns have been identified, press "Forward".
Proceed to finishing the build.
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Last updated 13 July 2005