Best type for encoded values including "other" (implying free text)

Athanasios Anastasiou athanasios.anastasiou at
Wed Oct 3 05:43:33 EDT 2012

Hello everyone

I have come across this situation where one of the fields i need to 
describe in an archetype (Residence Status) contains 8 strictly encoded 
values, one of which is "Other" implying that besides the encoded 
values, free-text would also be acceptable.

I am a bit puzzled as to how to represent this through the archetype 
editor and would appreciate your help with the following:

*) The type is clearly DV_TEXT ("free text or encoded")

*) DV_TEXT does not allow one to constrain the encoded part ("internal 
codes") through the archetype editor (i think)

*) DV_CODED_TEXT is a descendant of DV_TEXT

*) DV_CODED_TEXT has stricter semantics than DV_TEXT

1) If this was declared as DV_TEXT "free text or encoded" how can one 
constrain its content? (Through the archetype editor)

2) If this was declared as DV_CODED_TEXT, should "other" be part of the 
"internal codes" in a DV_CODED_TEXT? (I am not sure this would be right 
because in this case, you can't store the actual free-text "value" 
anywhere. The "value" of this will be "other")

3) Is this situation expected to be resolved at the template level? If 
yes, how is that achieved? (What i mean is, how do you decide if this is 
a "strictly multiple choice field" or "multiple choice with optional 
free text"

Looking forward to hearing from you
Athanasios Anastasiou

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