Sent on behalf of Joe Rogers
Date: August 23, 2022
To: NAACCR ListServ members
From: Joseph D. Rogers, M.S.
Team Lead: Informatics, Data Science, and Applications Team
Cancer Surveillance Branch
Division of Cancer Prevention and Control, NCCDPHP, CDC
Subject: Release of CDC NPCR's XMLExchange Plus 2.4 for NAACCR v23
We are very pleased to announce that the XMLExchange Plus 2.4 is now available! This version replaces the previous version available on the CDC NPCR Registry Plus website, and the web page has been updated. This version should be used to create user specific dictionaries for NAACCR version 23 and accommodates previous NAACCR XML versions.
XMLExchange Plus is a tool for reading and writing data exchange files formatted according to the NAACCR XML Data Exchange Standard. XMLExchange Plus was developed to work with analytic software tools such as R and SAS, which do not accept NAACCR-formatted XML data files as inputs, but can accept flat and delimited files produced by this application to perform data manipulation, statistical calculation, and graphical display.
This release of XMLExchange Plus addresses programming modifications needed for creating user dictionaries for NAACCR v23 to meet updated specifications in the NAACCR XML Data Exchange Standard, Version 1.6, released in early August 2022.
The following changes were made in this release of XML Exchange Plus:
- The dictionary item attribute "allowUnlimitedText" was retired in v1.6 and removed from the dictionary maintenance module in XML Exchange Plus. Starting with v1.6, no data item can have a value longer than its specified length. Text lengths have been increased in NAACCR v23 on data items that previously had this attribute.
- Support for defining grouped items in base dictionaries was removed in v1.6. The grouped items were removed from the NAACCR v23 data dictionary (Volume II) and XML base dictionary. Grouped NAACCR data items are still considered for generation of the record layout in XML Exchange Plus for use with dictionaries prior to NAACCR v23.
- Beginning with NAACCR v23, the data exchange layout is not planned to be packaged in the standard v23 NAACCR edit metafile; however, record layouts sorted by NAACCR item number will continue to be generated in XMLExchange Plus and can be inserted into the NAACCR edit metafile as needed. The updated EDITS51.DLL does not require a record layout in the edit metafile.
- A new value was added for the padding attributes: "none" (meaning don't apply any padding) and set as the default.
Tasks performed by XMLExchange Plus include:
- Create User Dictionaries/Dictionary Maintenance. This module is intended to help users who are not XML experts produce valid NAACCR XML dictionaries. This audience includes metafile administrators who may be asked to define a user dictionary based upon customized data items collected by their registry.
- Convert. This module converts data files from the flat-buffer format to NAACCR XML format (NAACCR v18 only – will be retired in the near future), from NAACCR XML format to flat-buffer format, and from NAACCR XML format to delimited.
- Run EDITS. This module runs EDITS against a NAACCR XML data file and creates a GenEDITS-style report (detail and summary).
- Import, View, Update, Export NAACCR Data. This module allows users to import NAACCR files, view the data in a grid, update individual records in grid cells or apply batch updates for file manipulation, export updated files with or without application of filter criteria, anonymize confidential data, and includes a feature to split files by number of records or by a field value. Multiple NAACCR files can be combined into one data source. Central registries using CRS Plus can specify connection string to the CRS Plus database and run linkage on all records in the data source against all abstracts or consolidated records in the CRS Plus database. This feature is helpful for case finding, completeness, and prioritization of data to determine if records exist in the database prior to importing into CRS Plus.
- Validation. This module runs schema validation to verify the xml file is a valid NAACCR xml document and that the file does not contain any data items that are not defined in the base or user-defined dictionary. It also validates the data type and length of each data item and produces a validation report.
For more information about CDC NPCR's XMLExchange Plus, including system requirements and installation instructions, please visit our product website at the following location: https://www.cdc.gov/cancer/npcr/tools/registryplus/xml-exchange-plus.htm
The install contains a PDF version of the XMLExchange Plus Manual that can be accessed from the Help menu in the task bar. The install also contains the NAACCR XML base dictionary for the current version of the NAACCR XML Standard.
Central registries and other data collection entities with a need to create local user dictionaries are encouraged to download the application and to review the process to create user dictionaries. We also encourage central registries to review existing local data items to determine if reporting needs have changed, and to start preparing user dictionaries for NAACCR v23. As a reminder, a User Dictionary Clearinghouse is hosted on the NAACCR website to show examples of user dictionaries from other central registries and to provide the template that will help central registries gather information needed to define their own XML User Dictionary. Central registries with registry-specific data items are encouraged to fill out the Excel template available at XML User Dictionary - NAACCR and upload it to the XML Dictionary Submission Portal with a corresponding XML User Dictionary so that registry software vendors can get access to these required files to prepare customized software applications and to deploy their NAACCR v23 changes in a timely manner.
ALL issues or support questions should be sent directly to the Helpdesk at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please share this information with other members of your team, as appropriate.
Public Use Databases
Joseph D. Rogers (Joe), MS
Informatics, Data Science, and Applications Team
National Program of Cancer Registries (NPCR)
Division of Cancer Prevention and Control (DCPC)
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)
Email: JRogers@cdc.gov Tel: 770-488-4701
Measuring progress. Targeting Action.
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