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Thread: Custom Report

  1. #1
    Member
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    Adam
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    Sep 2010
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    Default Custom Report

    Good Morning,

    This has probably been covered before, however, my searches have revealed nothing...

    Short background.

    Doing work for my law enforcement agency, we want to move off some paper forms and get everything into Alpha5..However, at the end of the day we still need to submit paper forms to another agency...

    I am currently working up the DB tables and some basic forms for prototyping.

    The information we need to collect has multiple people and we need to render the report with the correct number of pages (no more than 2 people per page and in custom areas). I will have to use some type of BMP as the actual form back ground and print my data over the top.. Can this be done? If I have 6 people involved can I print 3 identical reports? and thats no even counting supplemental forms that "may" need to be filled based on other criteria...

    The link below highlights the paper forms required.

    http://www.nhtsa-tsis.net/crashforms...tate/nj/NJ.htm

  2. #2
    "Certified" Alphaholic
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    Tom Cone Jr
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    Default Re: Custom Report

    This is always difficult.

    Try searching for message board threads that contain "pre-printed forms" or "pre printed forms" to see what others have been using.

    Since no one else has responded here are some ideas for your consideration:

    a) How do you produce the printed reports now? If you are using Word documents you might want to use a merge from Alpha. i.e. use your Word documents but "merge" data from Alpha.

    b) Yes, with trial and error you can use the Alpha report engine to place your data in specific locations on each page, so printing "on top" of an image is possible. Not fun, though.

    c) What help can the recipient agency supply to you? Your problem is not unique. Do they have templates, suggestions, forms you can use? What are their plans for going paperless?

    d) There may be other third party software that could work with data from your Alpha application. Broderbund's Formtool comes to mind, but I have no experience with it. There may be others.

  3. #3
    "Certified" Alphaholic Ted Giles's Avatar
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    Ted Giles
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    In the Wolds, Louth, Lincolnshire, UK
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    Default Re: Custom Report

    Adam, I've had to produce reports in a standard format and it is possible with Alpha. As Tom mentioned, it can be a trial and error process.
    Using RichText fields on reports gives more flexibility by the way. (Create a FT field and then add the Data Fields)
    Once you have created a report and saved it as a PDF, and print from the PDF Archive.
    I work with some docs which are covered by the "Legally Admissibility of Electronic Evidence" process, so I keep the Archive completely separate and use PaperPort at the office and Civica Doc Management at Clients.
    Ted Giles
    Example Consulting - UK
    .

    http://ec12.example-software.com//
    See our site for Alpha Support, Conversion and Upgrade.

  4. #4
    Member Bob Whitaker's Avatar
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    Bob Whitaker
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    Default Re: Custom Report

    As previous contributors have stated this is possible but tricky. One of the problems using images as a backdrop in a report is they tend to stop where the data stops and this looks downright ugly. We have developed a method using the creation of a PDF which merges the data with a PDF backdrop - the real beauty of using this method is that when the form changes - which all official forms do with amazing regularity it isn't hours of work redesigning the report. If you want more detailed information you can PM me.
    Bob Whitaker
    Bob Whitaker


  5. #5
    Member
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    Adam
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    Default Re: Custom Report

    Thanks for the messages...in reference to the questions....

    a) How do you produce the printed reports now? If you are using Word documents you might want to use a merge from Alpha. i.e. use your Word documents but "merge" data from Alpha. ( We are currently using omniform(old version) and have to start getting away from it..the db is showing its age..)

    c) What help can the recipient agency supply to you? Your problem is not unique. Do they have templates, suggestions, forms you can use? What are their plans for going paperless? Its a state agency and they dont seem to accept them yet.

    d) There may be other third party software that could work with data from your Alpha application. Broderbund's Formtool comes to mind, but I have no experience with it. There may be others. I will look into it, but want to stay with Alpha.

    PM Incoming as well, I have seen merging a pdf with the data in other systems and want to do something along that line...This is all Proof of concept as I try to expand my rudimentary knowledge of Alpha.

  6. #6
    Member
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    Adam
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    Sep 2010
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    Default Re: Custom Report

    Bob, I dont have access to PM's yet. :( You can e-mail me at that username. Thanks

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