[kwlug-disc] (Windows) savable pdf forms?

unsolicited unsolicited at swiz.ca
Wed Nov 3 11:52:51 EDT 2010


Interesting, thanks. I've seen / been asked to use surveymonkey 
before, but hadn't connected 'survey' with 'forms' until your note.

Not sure what I'm thinking is surveys - but I could be convinced. 
Looking at it further. Doesn't feel like the right solution, or, at 
least, not yet. You may have a good point / thought, though.

Joe Wennechuk wrote, On 11/03/2010 10:49 AM:
> I saw this one http://www.surveymonkey.com/ it is an online thing,
> but it seems like what you need.
> 
>> Date: Tue, 2 Nov 2010 15:36:30 -0400 From: unsolicited at swiz.ca 
>> To: kwlug-disc at kwlug.org Subject: [kwlug-disc] (Windows) savable
>> pdf forms?
>> 
>> I will be collecting a bunch of information (name, phone number,
>>  e-mail address).
>> 
>> I understand I can create an openoffice document with fields,
>> export as pdf, and create a pdf form.
>> 
>> As far as I know, people could then open up the form (in Acrobat
>>  Reader), fill it out, and print it. And that's it. They can't
>> save it, e-mail it, nothing, and, of course, nothing comes back
>> to me to be able to do anything useful with the data except
>> reenter the data.
>> 
>> I have no choice, but the clients will all be using Windows, and
>>  Acrobat Reader. I have no ability to install Okular, Foxit, or 
>> anything extra, everywhere. It's hard enough to get them to open
>>  e-mail, an attachment is going to be challenging, and other
>> software is right out. We are not in an alternate dimension where
>> they're all running Kubuntu.
>> 
>> Poking about with google searches, I see there are web sites, or
>> were, such as pdffiller.com, that would take a pdf form and let
>> the user fill it out on the web. I've seen no hints that a data
>> record could be extracted and sent back to me. All such free
>> sites I could find are no longer free.
>> 
>> - anyone know of such a free site out there (still?)?
>> 
>> - how might I go about getting a savable pdf form, starting with
>>  OpenOffice, and ending with windows acrobat reader savable
>> files?
>> 
>> - how might I make this webable, html + xml files? - e.g. Print
>> blanks for people to fill out on-site, .pdf's to send to people
>> to fill out then print, and/or a web page to fill out, if 
>> possible.
>> 
>> - what are the concepts / magic search terms I am looking for,
>> having received such a filled out pdf, to have the form processed
>> and append a record to a database (openoffice spreadsheet for the
>> moment.)
>> 
>> - suppose a web page is possible, what am I looking for / search
>> terms in terms of a foss package, that would do that back end
>> part such as let them inquire for their last form, update it, and
>> the office can then look at the current records?
>> 
>> - there aren't really any back end servers available, no real
>> front end user expertise to create their own sql queries /
>> reports on the fly, and few web storage facilities available
>> beyond something like google docs. At this stage, openoffice
>> spreadsheets and documents are all that's available, which is ok
>> as this process will result in traversing the user exercise of
>> figuring out what reports need to come out, and therefore what
>> data needs to be collected - which is to say, cause the system
>> requirements to be defined.
>> 
>> What FOSS is out there in this area, and what is it I'm groping 
>> towards in terms of concepts or search terms.
>> 
>> Thanks for any thoughts, ideas, suggestions.



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