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Re: st: questions on using the list

From   Phil Schumm <>
Subject   Re: st: questions on using the list
Date   Wed, 30 Apr 2008 13:47:06 -0500

On Apr 30, 2008, at 1:04 PM, Tunga Kantarci wrote:
1. What is the procedure to reply to a post?
How can I make it sure that the rely I send goes under the thread I intend. Sometimes I see that "re:" comes before "st:" and sometimes after "st:"... I use outlook to write messages here. Given that, what is it t write to the subject line of the message to make the message appear under the correct thread?

Different mailers handle threads in different ways, and, since I don't use Outlook, I can't comment on how it behaves. My mailer (Apple's Mail) threads first by Message Id, and then my subject (using a pretty complicated algorithm, actually). WRT the latter, the various subject prefixes (st:, Re:, RE:, etc.) and their order appear to be irrelevant.

The most important thing you can do to increase the chances that your message threads properly for other users is to always use your mailer's "Reply" function to reply to a message, and make sure that this is the message you are really replying to. IOW, do not (as many often do) use "Reply" to reply to an irrelevant message and then try to change the thread by changing the subject. That won't work.

Not all mailers handle Message Ids properly, so in these cases, being able to fall back on the subject is helpful. For this reason, try not to change the subject (though, as I said, the various prefixes seem to be irrelevant, as least for my mailer). That said, changing the subject is occasionally necessary (e.g., in cases where the original poster used a lousy subject), but, in these cases, threading will be left entirely to the Message Id.

2. I have to say that posting and replying to this list is not that easy as it is in google groups for instance. To reply to a message you have to go to your own email program and do things there rather than to do it directly on the web page. Is there a plan to update the web site of the list to make it more user friendly?

Statalist is an email list, not a web-based forum. The archives available on Stata's site are a very nice resource, but they're just that -- archives. Note that the archiving program also has its own way of handling threads, but, if people follow the procedure I described above, I've observed that it usually works pretty well.

3. Sometimes it takes quite a bit of time before my messages appear on the list. S it because they are moderated before their appearance? If yes, are we then restricted by how quickly they are moderated by the person who does it?

Delays can be introduced by the mailserver where Statalist is hosted, by your own mailserver, or by any of the mail servers in between. I too occasionally experience delays, but at other times the response is quite quick.

4. My final question is about stata. I do the following and I get the warning that variable rep78 not found. Why would that be happening? (I have asked this question in a previous message but that message did not appear. If it will appear later, then please excuse me repeating the question)

. sysuse auto
(1978 Automobile Data)

. catplot hbar rep78 mpg

works for me (using Nick's -catplot-), though I'm not sure what you're trying to accomplish with this plot.

-- Phil

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