Jan 11, 2018  

Patantara supports a notion of “collections” to help teachers maintain access permissions for a set of documents they give access to their students. This post describes how to use them.

Say you have separate documents created for each of the Sarali Varisai exercises and you want to give access to a them to a specific person, say Normally, you will have to go into each of these documents and add the student’s email address in the viewers list in the document preambles as shown below -

viewers =

... the rest of the exercise document ...

(You can read more about document preambles in Controlling who can view/edit your documents.)

Needless to say, this can get tedious pretty quickly if you’ve created many documents for your students. To make this easier, you can maintain one master document - called a “collection” - which links to all the other documents that are part of the collection. Then in these other documents, you can mention in the preamble that they’re part of that collection. Once set up this way, you will only need to give a student access to the collection document and automatically they will have access to all the documents that are part of the collection.

For example, say your collection document has the id ggi8yGgy. Then in each of the documents which are part of this collection document, you mention the collection ID in the preamble as shown below -

collections = ggi8yGgy

.. the rest of the document ..

Then you can control permissions across the entire collection by mentioning viewers and editors in the preamble of the collection document, as described in the “Controlling…” post. This way, there is a single control point for maintaining a curated collection over which the curator also has control.


At the moment, you cannot make “collections of collections” this way for security reasons, but this may be relaxed in the future.

A single document can be part of up to 10 collections. Just mention all the collection ids in the collections entry in the preamble. If so, then anyone who has permission to access any one of those collections will be able to access your document.

Note that this mechanism ensures that you cannot create a collection of documents without the consent of the person authoring the documents that you want to put into your collection, since either you or someone you know will need edit rights to the document you want to include. Patantara may in the future provide a mechanism for you to communicate and ask for that permission.

Happy organizing!