Importing and Exporting
IMSMANG provides extensive data import and export capabilities and formats designed to support a variety of purposes and needs. Using IMSMANG’s import and export functions, information managers can exchange data directly with other IMSMANG systems, export data for use in external tools and share data with other XML-compliant system.
The primary mechanism IMSMANG uses for sharing information is the field report. As discussed in Chapter 1, field reports contain the vast majority of IMSMANG data and are the sole repository for entering operational information into the system. So, exporting and importing field reports let information managers easily share information between IMSMANG systems and other IMSMANG tools such as IMSMANG Remote Entry and IMSMA Mobile. Information managers can share large or small amounts of data directly with other IMSMANG users whether they are working together in the same programme or in separate countries.
Field report information may be exported and imported in either of two formats, maXML and MDML. Table provides an overview of the formats including the type of information sharing they support.
Table 16. Comparison of MDML and maXML
Item MDML maXML Name Mobile Data Markup Language Mine Action Extensible Markup Language
Uses Exchange of field reports with IMSMA Mobile and IMSMANG Remote Entry
Exchange of unapproved field reports for quality assurance or data entry Exchange of complete field report data including reconciliation and links
Exchange of approved or unapproved field reports between IMSMANG systems
Source Export from individual field reports, the Workbench, Search or the File menu Export from individual field reports, the Workbench, Search or the File menu Reconciliation and Links No links or reconciliation information included Includes reconciliation and link information if available Import To the Workbench To the Workbench or automatic approval Templates Uses MTML templates (IMSMA Mobile) or FFML templates (IMSMA RE); can select any field report template on import FFML templates only. Requires publishing of correct field report template prior to import; can import CDFs using templates.
When importing XML field reports into IMSMANG, there are occasionally problems with the data that cause the data to not be fully imported. These “import issues” are tracked on each field report and must be resolved before the field report can be approved. Typically, import issues are the result of references to auxiliary data such as places, organisations, ordnance or country structure elements that do not exist in the importing system. These issues can be resolved easily by creating the necessary auxiliary data and re-importing the field reports. This functionality is designed to permit imports to continue even if some of the linked data is missing.
In addition to field reports, the translated terms of data elements be exported and imported into IMSMANG. Using this functionality, information managers can take any translations that have been created for IMSMANG data elements and export them to .properties files that can be edited in external tools (such as Rosetta-J) and either exchanged with other IMSMANG systems or reimported into the same IMSMANG system.
Auxiliary Data and Map Exports
IMSMANG supports the export of base tables (or auxiliary data) and maps for certain external purposes. It is important to note that these exports are one-way and that the information cannot be imported back into an IMSMANG system. These exports are designed to provide external tools such as IMSMANG Remote Entry and IMSMA Mobile the information required to support field report data entry. These include typical auxiliary information such as ordnance, organisations, places and country structure information. Base tables are exported in maXML format.
Maps in IMSMANG can also be exported for use in IMSMA Mobile, ArcPad and the IMSMA Mobile application. These exports contain both base layers and IMSMANG data layers. Like base table exports, map exports are unidirectional and cannot be imported into an IMSMANG system.
Certain data within IMSMANG, particularly the administrative data, is not exportable in any external format. These include saved searches, impact scoring schemes and users and roles. Also included in non-exportable data are tasks, work items, and current view templates. This data can, however, be shared via backup files.