Dynamic Document Assembly and PDF Creation

Web-based document and form creation. User input can be collected and a downloadable PDF generated instantly. The download can optionally be controlled by a paywall. The finished PDF can also be emailed automatically to one or more addresses for signing / notification.

Dynamic documents can be prepared as RTF for manual editing in a word processor.

Output can be prepared for InDesign, XPress, LaTeX, etc., with paragraph- and character-level styles applied, ready to “pour into” text boxes.

Information on what elements the document was assembled from and what user choices were selected can be recorded in a database.


Sample Applications

Forms can be generated from a template and/or information collected via the web. The data may be stored in a database and selected elements of the entered information inserted into the PDF form as a static or user-editable form. Demo.The generated PDF can be immediately downloaded to the browser and/or stored on the server. Filenames can be serial numbers or any arbitrary data. PDF forms may be generated to complete in a PDF reader or by hand. Dates and future dates can be calculated and marked on the PDF. Serial number can be keyed to unique ID in a database and stamped on the form as text, barcode or both. Please see working demo.

Customization / localization of documents (e.g., policies or contracts): information specific to the document can be inserted into the text, and reformatted before PDF is made. A document can be constructed as a series of parts determined by conditional logic (e.g., if California, insert this section). Page numbers and parts of the document can be labeled with any alpha or numeric schema on the fly, a table of contents can likewise be constructed, and included anywhere in the document. Image files (logos, signatures) can be merged to the PDF as well.

Bulk mail addressing: PDFs of direct mail flyers can be merged with a database of mail records, and printed on a laser printer (or Docutech). Any customization is possible, conditional sections, etc.

Fundraising letters were individually marked / modified and merged with a mail list. PDF of college letterhead / logo, a personal block of information was inserted at second paragraph.

Event tickets can be printed and customized and stamped with attendee name or any arbitrary data. Images and 1D or 2D barcodes can be included. These can be set up web-accessible / WAP / HTML for mobile phones, or sent by SMS direct to phone. Scanning from phones is a little dicey, a human-readable code can be added for redundancy.

Event registration: registrants enter data in an interactive web form, the web application checks it for mandatory fields and things like correct number of digits in zip codes and phone numbers. When the user completes the form, a PDF is emailed and the record is stored in a database.

Printed materials requests: — users select printed materials that they wish to have sent to them. Support staff downloads a PDF containing all the leads of the day with cover letters listing the selected documents. Documents available in PDF are incorporated into the PDF sent to support staff, and a picking list for color materials, catalog, etc. is at the end. The company’s CRM database is updated with customer information and what they were sent.

Online PDF Requests: Users select document and geographic information and a “book” is constructed on the fly with table of contents and page numbers added, the newly-constructed PDF is presented to the browser. When company staff upload a new PDF to site for user selection, a thumbnail of the first page is made and available for display next to document with a select box.

Automatic textbooks: Students go to a web page and enter a class number. Books used in that class that are available as licensed files (and/or public domain) are formatted for screen and printout, as well as Mobi format. The student is presented with a “book” in PDF. Line numbers can be added for classroom or dramatic use.

A template for a chain of stores: Employees entered data on a web form and downloaded PDFs of store signage in the correct graphics, fonts, and sizes and images for brand identification, ready for printing on card stock.

Logistics management: Donors to a humanitarian relief organization entered (via web) the contents of individual boxes sent to a holding company to be consolidated on a 40-foot container for shipment to the east coast of Russia. After entering the specifics, the donor downloaded a PDF containing a packing list with a very large-type serial number printed on it to affix to the box(es). The box numbers correlated to the shipping manifest, and the packing list had instructions in Russian to help locate the required Russian language documentation. The information was stored in a database so that it could be web-accessed by the organization in Russia and U.S., and used for customs tax information. There were 21 optional large labels in three languages (e.g., “THIS SIDE UP”) that were added to the PDF at the request of the volunteer filling in the form.

Customized greeting cards and invitations.

Customized childrens’ books (where the names in the book are changed to those of the child’s friends.)