> I can't see there being any reason for truly random sorting, so surely > you need to find out what the rules are he's actually asking for? It's not random, surely. But often there is not a real reason that things should be ordered as they are, other than the desire to have them ordered. For example, the order of front-page stories might have nothing to do with date or any other existing data. You could add a "priority" field or something like that, but really you are just adding a nice name to a sort order field. Another reason might be that you cannot predict the ordering rules. If I'm building an application that I am going to sell to customers, I may not want to rely on my abilities to predict what my customers' sort rules would be. So, it might just be a flexibility issue. > In situations where really random sort order is required, I use a > sortOrder field and display sorted on that, but it doesn't sound like > that is what is being asked for here... That's basically what he's doing with FIND_IN_SET, except the sort_order field is an argument to FIND_IN_SET rather than an attribute to the relation. -- Matt Warden Miami University Oxford, OH, USA http://mattwarden.com This email proudly and graciously contributes to entropy.