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st: RE: Making saveold a permanent option


From   "Nick Cox" <n.j.cox@durham.ac.uk>
To   <statalist@hsphsun2.harvard.edu>
Subject   st: RE: Making saveold a permanent option
Date   Tue, 2 Mar 2004 21:32:00 -0000

I'm pretty sure that there isn't. 

Argument #1: what StataCorp expects of users
============================================ 

Basically StataCorp has a presumption that -save- 
meams "-save- for the present version of Stata". 
Over users and over uses that must be the overwhelming
need. Letting you -save- back one version of Stata 
(and only one) is an indulgence (and a welcome one). 
Bluntly, StataCorp really want to encourage you to 
keep up-to-date, although changing the structure of .dta
files is not undertaken to frustrate you. 

So what, you are saying. All I'm asking is that 
I can configure my own private Stata. Here then 
is argument #2. 

Argument #2: a risk of side-effects
===================================

Suppose there were a setting that meant that for you 
-save- really was a shortcut for -saveold-. This 
could break or subvert programs you used and do files you wrote 
in which -save- really did mean 
-save-. Even if you remembered this always in your own 
practice and were sensitive to it, there is always 
the matter of Stata's own programs that might use 
-save- or user-written programs that might use -save-. 
You won't to look inside each and check for the bug
that is the consequence of your own decision. 
As between some versions of Stata and the 
previous one, that could be a major hassle. Quite 
how major is difficult to say, as -save- may not 
be invoked that frequently outside interactive use, 
but it's something else to bear in mind. 

No, the onus lies on you to find a way to remember 
this. Perhaps you can think of a word with pleasant 
associations, and then just write a wrapper

program niceword 
	version 8 
	saveold `0' 
end 

Nick 
n.j.cox@durham.ac.uk 

N.B. you cannot write 

program save 
	version 8 
	saveold `0'
end 

as Stata will _always_ give preference to the built-in. 

There is no way that Stata 7 can open Stata 8 .dta files. 

Petersen, Karen 
 
> My pc at home has Stata 7,  and at the office I use Stata 8.  
> I often forget 
> to specify "saveold" when moving data from the office to 
> home.  Is there any 
> way to tell Stata 8 to always save data sets as Stata 7 (make 
> saveold the 
> default)?  I know this may seem trivial, but I think it would 
> be a useful 
> feature.  If this is not possible, would there be 
> disadvantages to adding such 
> an option?  
> Finally, if I have data in Stata 8 format that I need to open 
> in Stata 7, is 
> there a way to do so (in an emergency:-))?

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