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Format of an SSI File


I am trying to understand the syntax of an SSI file when opened in a text editor, but it is hard to figure it out without a reference.

Can I find an explanation of the syntax somewhere?
asked Oct 25, 2018 by prashant (180 points)
Just a comment but I believe the ssi file is not a file you should be modifying via a text editor. Instead you should conduct all editing via the authoring tool.

I was informed of this many years ago by Sawtooth Software.

I'd be interested, as you are, to see some feedback from a Sawtooth Software support person.

1 Answer

0 votes
Currently the syntax is not documented.  Years ago we used to keep the format documented for cases like this, but there were very few people that actually requested it and even fewer actually ended up implementing something based off of it.  

What are hoping to accomplish if you did happen to know the syntax?
answered Oct 25, 2018 by Jon Heaton Gold Sawtooth Software, Inc. (10,280 points)
I did not have anything specific at the moment to accomplish, but it is something I would like to understand. Even though it might be useful only in certain cases, I believe it is something that should be made available to the users. A user tinkering with such things should, of course, be informed that she/he is expected to know what they are doing and should be doing so at their own risk.
The main reasons I've heard for wanting the .ssi file documentation have been:

1) To automate some portion of the creation of their studies (usually from another system).  We recently added the Word import feature that covers all non-conjoint question types to accommodate this request

2) To replace text in their study without having to open every single settings window that uses that text.  We are working on a find and replace system that will make this action available  within Lighthouse Studio instead of having to open the .ssi file in a text editor to make those changes.  

To be honest, the .ssi file format is pretty painful to be editing manually.  I think Lighthouse Studio users will be much better off requesting what they are trying to do on our feedback site (http://feedback.sawtoothsoftware.com) instead of pulling their hair out trying to create a valid .ssi file from scratch.