How Discuto's parser works

Today we will talk about the Discuto document parser and the way it transforms your document into a live discussion. There are some broad lines you will have to follow for the parser to do what you want and hopefully those are not too strict and can be followed without big changes to your document.  Some of those are standards you already follow in your normal docs.

Paragraphs :

The most important issue to understand is how paragraph are automatically created by Discuto. Paragraphs are triggered by the new line command (usually the “Enter” key in every standard word editor). In html files the paragraph tag (<p>) is used to trigger paragraphs.

Important note : “Carriage return” - usually created by pressing “Shift+Enter” - does not create a new paragraph but only makes a new line inside the same paragraph, as it does in any word editor.

Headlines / Headings :

Discuto interprets headings as being a new “section” of the document and thus a heading always makes a new paragraph separating what was “before the heading” and “after the heading”.

The Headings themselves are transformed into a special paragraph that can not be commented or voted since usually they do not contain actual content to be discussed but rather just an introduction to the next subject. Despite this you can change them to a normal paragraph as well if it makes sense in your particular case.

Tables :

Tables in documents are kept as they are and not split up into rows. Additionally, the each cell within a table is given the same amount of space to make best use of the limited space - particularly on mobile devices.

If you intend to discuss each row or cell separately you have to break the table into the units you want to discuss (e.g. cells/rows) and to separate them by new line commands (i.e “enter”). When uploaded, this creates a paragraph for each unit that can then be commented and voted by participants.

Images :

Images are gathered from the word document and uploaded into Discuto, scaled according to the device on which they are displayed as they are part of the Responsive Design architecture. This is also the reason why some images are displayed with a lower pixel density than in the Word file.

General Layout (font type, font size etc..) :

Discuto harmonizes the layout of discussions so that users have the same experience while going through different discussions, i.e. fonts , font sizes, headings size, tables size and other layout related aspects are harmonised between documents.

Final note :

So taking in consideration these aspects the first two aspects mentioned here will be the more important so that the transformed document matches the original doc file. Considering the other aspects is important to give a good presentation and a good look and feel to the people joining your discussion.

Should you be unhappy how the uploaded document is presented in Discuto you have basically two options: Change the formatting of the word document according to the few rules outlined above and reuploading the document or to use the online tools to edit the paragraphs (see our FAQ section). Should there be only minor things to edit we recommend to use the online editor. For all other cases please work on the formatting of the text file and upload it again.  

Feel free to contact us in case of any question you have to office@discuto.io or through our contact form.

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