Ok - a complicated one - but really need help (auto formatting)

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blazingcrayon

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Ok - I'll try and be clear. I'm not a tech guy so be forgiving.

I work out of a shared inbox. Multiple groups work in this inbox and we have created views for each group.

lets look at View 1. View 1 has two teams working out of it, and the members of each team have a category assigned to them (teamA) and (teamB)

We want items not owned by one team OR the other to be highlighted in BLUE.

There are three categories this rule will apply to (cat1) (cat2) and (cat3)

if an email has one of those category tags on it (it is assigned tags based on VB script and macro), we want it blue if no one owns it. If someone takes the email in hand they assign themself to it - so my tage would read "blazingcrayon (teamA)"

If I set the autoformatting with just "categories doesn't contain (teamA)" it works. when I add "doesnt contain (teamB) it treats it as an AND.

Querybuilder seems to fix it, but is stored on local registry so it doesn't work across the shared inbox on multiple users machines. We dont like the relaibility of querybuilder so dont want to add it to everyone's outlook.

any thoughts on how I can get the autoformatting to not be blue with EITHER (teamA) OR (teamB) tagged to it?
 

Forum Admin

Senior Member
Double negatives are hard to work with. The 'doesn't contain' and the OR ends up looking at both making a mess of things. if not team1 or if not team2 includes both because the first is true if team2 is assigned and the second is true if team1 is assigned.

Assuming the team categories will have a common word not used in cat1, cat2, or cat3, try 'category does not contain team' where team is the unique word.
 

blazingcrayon

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Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account
Exchange Server
Double negatives are hard to work with. The 'doesn't contain' and the OR ends up looking at both making a mess of things. if not team1 or if not team2 includes both because the first is true if team2 is assigned and the second is true if team1 is assigned.

Assuming the team categories will have a common word not used in cat1, cat2, or cat3, try 'category does not contain team' where team is the unique word.

hmm - the teams don't have a common name... it's actually like (ABC) and (DEF)

any thoughts?

I got it to work in one particular view, where it is set with Categories = #Cat4 then on advanced has doesnt contain Brian, doesnt contain Laura, doesnt contain John... etc... this view works... the email, if tagged as #Cat4 stays blue until any one of these tags it with their name...

but for other views there are multiple categories and multiple "doesnt contain"s

sorry I know this is complicated - but I'm almost positive there's a way to make it work!
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
Renaming the teams is out of the question? :) Filtering would be easier - hide everything with team 1 or team2, so only items with no team assigned is visible.

Or color everything blue then color items assigned to teams in black. This gets rid of the double negatives. :)
 

blazingcrayon

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Outlook version
Outlook 2007
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Exchange Server
Renaming the teams is out of the question? :) Filtering would be easier - hide everything with team 1 or team2, so only items with no team assigned is visible.

Or color everything blue then color items assigned to teams in black. This gets rid of the double negatives. :)

Im actually tryin your suggestion - so it is not blue if category = Cat4, then on advanced tab

category contains (abc)

category contains (def)

seems to be treating it as AND instead of OR... anyway to fix this?
 

blazingcrayon

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Outlook 2007
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Exchange Server
ok, I think I've determined more -

when dealing with categories ... does outlook treat a whole category (exact match) different that a doesnt contain?

because in one of my views this works:

Categories #Team1

now we go to advanced tab and put in 3 "doesn't contains" each to a team members' exact category

so like this: Doesnt Contain :Brian (Team1)

Doesn't contain :John (Team1)

Doesn't contain :Laura (Team1)

so it was working as "if it doesnt contain brian OR John OR Laura, then be BLUE

I learned to lean this out I could just use

Doesnt Contain (Team1) and it works!! Anythign with #Team1 Category but not (Team1) anywhere in the categories stayed blue, and if any of us tagged ourself to it, its black

but...

when two teams in a different view can each take complete ownership, there are 10 total members and I don't want to do a "doesnt contain" for each of their names, but rather just use that shortcut feature and still have it treated as OR

so say Team1 or Team2 can take ownership of an email with category #Team2

I dont want to do the

doesnt contain :Laura (Team1)

doesnt contain :Brian (Team1)

doesnt contain :Nolan (Team 2)

Doesnt contain :Martha (Team2)

I want to do it like

doesn't contain (Team1)

Doesnt contain (Team2)

this goes back to the original query, except now I'm pointing out a situation with exact category matches the OR functionality does work even with the negative!

so longwinded way of asking, doesn outlook treat an exact match in category different than looking for a piece of a category
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
Yes, Outlook treats contain and doesn't contain as a wildcard of sorts - if the category contains (or doesn't) the word, it matches it. That is why I suggested changing the team names (like prefacing both with a unique character) - a single 'doesn't contain' will apply to both teams.

Exact match is an exact match.
 

blazingcrayon

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Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account
Exchange Server
Yes, Outlook treats contain and doesn't contain as a wildcard of sorts - if the category contains (or doesn't) the word, it matches it. That is why I suggested changing the team names (like prefacing both with a unique character) - a single 'doesn't contain' will apply to both teams.

Exact match is an exact match.

thanks - I just can't figure out why exact matches are treated like "OR"s and the partial part of a category is treated like "AND"

basically, its like this in one view

IF Category is #TEAM1, TURN BLUE IF

categories doesnt contain Brian (Team1) or categories Doesnt contain Laura (Team2)

in the even either of us tag the email, it is no longer blue.

but if I do doesnt contain (team1)

doesn't contain (team2) it treats it like AND

sorry to be beating this to death, but it's kind of how I really need to operate! :)
 

Diane Poremsky

Senior Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2016 32 bit
Email Account
Office 365 Exchange
You are asking the filter to do something if either of the conditions are true:

if not in Team1

OR

not in Team2

since everything is in either Team1 or Team2, the condition is TRUE.

You need to use if not in Team1 AND not in Team2 - but when you use the same field twice, it is always OR'd. You need to use AND when you are using not.

Categories add a special twist since they are a text field. Normally, you can use two or more values in the Value field - mary OR joe - or mary, joe - but because categories is a text field, if you use OR, it thinks you are looking for the phrase 'A OR B', not A or B.

Believe it or not, I spent an hour tonight trying to figure out why 'widget logic' would not work on my wordpress site. I wanted to do 'if not in A or if not in B' and even after working on this with you today, I still screwed up my logic. Have I said how much I hate negatives? ;) I needed to use 'if not in A AND if not in B' - if the phrase could be "if not (A or B)" it would work, but it works like outlook's doesn't contain and is written as "(if not A) OR (if not B)"
 

blazingcrayon

Member
Outlook version
Outlook 2007
Email Account
Exchange Server
You are asking the filter to do something if either of the conditions are true:

if not in Team1

OR

not in Team2

since everything is in either Team1 or Team2, the condition is TRUE.

You need to use if not in Team1 AND not in Team2 - but when you use the same field twice, it is always OR'd. You need to use AND when you are using not.

Categories add a special twist since they are a text field. Normally, you can use two or more values in the Value field - mary OR joe - or mary, joe - but because categories is a text field, if you use OR, it thinks you are looking for the phrase 'A OR B', not A or B.

Believe it or not, I spent an hour tonight trying to figure out why 'widget logic' would not work on my wordpress site. I wanted to do 'if not in A or if not in B' and even after working on this with you today, I still screwed up my logic. Have I said how much I hate negatives? ;) I needed to use 'if not in A AND if not in B' - if the phrase could be "if not (A or B)" it would work, but it works like outlook's doesn't contain and is written as "(if not A) OR (if not B)"

thanks Diane and forumadmin - you guys are a credit to the board!

I'll keep tinkering... too bad querybuilder wont work in a shared box!
 
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