Comparison to "usual" reporting

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1) End user can modify templates


Many reporting tools are very complicated to use or do not offer end user modifications at all.


a) With TextDynamic it is possible to load a regular document with added tags for fields (i.e. <<name>>) and bands (i.e. <<#ORDERS>> .... <<#/ORDERS>>) and TextDynamic can convert such a document into a reporting template (=token to template conversion). Syntax highlighting is possible while editing the reporting template in text form.


b) If the database structure is rather complicated you can use the alternative template architecture. Here the report logic has been split up into two parts (pre template and template architecture).


One part is created and maintained by the developer. It contains the outline of the report with bands which can but do not have to be used, fields which can be used and variables which are calculated while the report is being processed as XML data.


The second part is the report template. It can be edited by the end user (you can of course hide it, too) using the word processor. It is possible to insert fields and variables from the "repository". It is also possible to reset a selected group to its initial state in case it has been messed up. It is saved as document with added proprietary attributes to maintain the bands.


2) No fixed page layouts


Most reporting tools work with page layouts. This means you may place graphics at exact positions on a form and when the report is created it will exactly look as the designed forms.


This approach is often very good, but is some cases you want the text created by the reporter to be edit able. The mentioned approach has a problem here - while it is sometimes possible to create RTF documents with the reporting tool theses are not really "edit able" because the text has been broken up into the tiniest pieces - just single text boxes. Usually the RTF export is optimized to be best viewed in MS Word only.


With the TextDynamic report a text file (RTF or WPT format) is created which allows full editing, including changing of the page size, and other operations which makes the re-pagination of the text necessary.


This means that the reporting feature is optimal if you need to create longer texts, such as contracts. It will be suitable to print lists and invoices. If you need to print forms which look like pre printed paper forms (i.e. TAX forms) you cannot use the TextDynamic reporting. But in this case you will probably not need sophisticated formatted text.


3) Most RTF attributes usable


Usually the reporting tools only support very limited RTF features, sometimes even justified text is a problem, not to speak of images with text wrapping around, tables and more sophisticated tab stops which use fill signs.


Since the TextDynamic reporting uses the same text engine all the powerful word processing features can be used in the created report.


4) No external installation


Many reporting tools require to be installed separately, they can be quite cost intensive and the licensing can be restrictive.


The TextDynamic reporting can be simply enabled by purchasing the add on license key at a very low price.


No additional installation is required. Since for report print and preview, data-merge and loading plus saving the report templates the same code is used which is used by the word processor, the size overhead is extremely small.

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