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Track Changes


It is difficult to understand how a record came to be in its current or previous state.


Changes have been made to a record or set of records, which another contributor or user would like to understand.


Create and display a log of Changesets, where each entry represents an amendment to a record.

Records may evolve through multiple amendments from different contributors. Amendments can include:

  • Creation of a new record
  • Additions of new data to an existing record
  • Removal of data from an existing record
  • Deletion of a record
  • Reverts: undoing a previous change

Knowing the history of changes to a record is useful in a number of circumstances, for example:

  • To inform decisions about its future
  • To understand activity in a record, perhaps to resolve disputes
  • To assess the implications of accepting or reverting a specific change
  • To find out about the evolution of a record, or a set of records, including the whole database
  • To analyse patterns of behaviour, from either a record or database level

By keeping a log of changes and associating them with records, the history of a record and a project can be displayed, for moderators and contributors to view.

Open Library

Displaying the history of changes to a single record (in this case a book)


A list of recent changes made to the whole database

Related patterns


Multiple collaborators independently making entries into a database makes it difficult to understand how the dataset reached its current state.

Something missing? Suggest a change or addition