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ELAN tier sets


This topic contains 15 replies, has 4 voices, and was last updated by  Matt Brown 2 months, 3 weeks ago.

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October 3, 2018 at 11:59 #12409

Gabrielle Hodge

Hi Han,

This problem with the tier sets has happened again. Yesterday I opened an ELAN file to begin annotating for a new project. I already have about five tier sets for different projects, and created a new tier set ‘BSL Questions’ for the new project (specifying files in a domain, not just the opened file). The new tier set worked fine, as did my existing, older tier sets.

Then this morning I re-opened the same file and all my tier sets have disappeared. I will send you both the elan0.log and the TierSet.xml doc (which does not contain the new Tier Set BSL Questions that I created yesterday). Any idea what is going on would be much appreciated.

October 4, 2018 at 10:27 #12412


Hi Gabrielle, thanks for sending the files, the log appears to be useful this time. A “Fatal Error” is reported when ELAN tries to read the TierSet.xml file.

The problem appears to be in the way the name of the tier “Eye&Brow” is saved in the TierSet.xml file; the ampersand is not properly “escaped”. In the .eaf file the name of the tier is written as (I hope this works in this editor) “Eye&Brow”. This is a bug that needs to be fixed in ELAN.

I’ll send you a corrected version of the TierSet.xml, which should work until the next time you save the tier sets again. You’ll have to manually edit the file again in that case (as long as this isn’t repaired in ELAN).

Sorry for the inconvenience!


January 25, 2019 at 17:52 #12622

Matt Brown

Sorry to dredge up an old post but I found one issue today that is causing the TierSet.xml loading to be skipped on startup.

We have a tier that has an ampersand (&) in the tier name. When that tier is included in a tier set, it can’t be loaded when ELAN is initialised – the corresponding log entry is as follows (the tier name is Eye&Brow):

[Fatal Error] TierSet.xml:9:21 The reference to entity “Brow” must end with ‘;’ delimiter.

Rough guess – the & character in the tier name has special meaning to the XML parser but it isn’t being escaped when written to the file when the TierSet is created/edited.

Removing that tier from the tier set allows the tier sets to be loaded normally.

Cheers and have a nice weekend.

January 26, 2019 at 03:41 #12623

Matt Brown

Doh – I didn’t notice that there was a second page to this thread and that you’d already found this out above. Sorry, Friday afternoon syndrome.

January 28, 2019 at 11:17 #12686


No problem. This issue is fixed in ELAN 5.4.

January 28, 2019 at 18:13 #12688

Matt Brown

Good to know – thanks, Han.

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