OT, sort of - Form question

Subject: OT, sort of - Form question
From: "JOE HODGE" <JHODGE -at- arielcorp -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Thu, 11 Aug 2005 12:43:39 -0400

I was recently tasked with creating an online form out of the warranty
card and start-up checklist documents. Both are currently in FrameMaker
as we import them by reference into manuals. We, pubs, wanted to keep
them in FrameMaker so we can continue to import them into manuals.
Support wants online forms to eliminate the manual keying in of the data
received from the packagers. The packagers could complete the forms
online and submit them. The data would then be pulled into a database.

I had thought I had a solution, using MicroType's TimeSaver and Form
Assistant. That would allow us to keep a single source document and also
continue to directly import the documents into manuals. It would give
support the online forms and data they wanted in the form of a .PDF. By
using the MicroType plugins, we would also eliminate having to key in
form fields every time a change was made in the source document.

A monkey wrench has been thrown into the plan. They want the online form
to pull data, such as serial numbers, ship dates, etc. from the database
and autofill certain fields. Is it possible to have the .PDFs pull data
from a database? For example, when the user enters the serial number for
the compressor, the fields listing the serial numbers for the cylinders
and the cylinder specs are pulled from the database and autofilled.

Any suggestions are greatly appreciated.

Thanks much,
Joseph L. Hodge
Technical Writing

Lostcreek Technologies Group
14335 Mill Hollow Lane
Strongsville, OH 44136

Voice: 440-268-0579
Fax: 440-268-0579
Mobile: 440-610-3598
E-mail: jlhodge -at- lostcreektech -dot- com


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