Checklist “Getting the Most from your Documents”

This checklist helps you think about the situation when you are struggling with the production or publication of documents.

Everyday situations

  • Do you feel that Word or Acrobat may sometimes be used inefficiently?
  • Are people spending much time fiddling with formatting?
  • Are new documents started by taking a copy of an existing one and removing most or all of the content?
  • Is there a recurring need to extract content from PDF files?
  • Are you satisfied with the way your house style is implemented?

Intelligent documents

  • Do you feel that Word could be used for more than creating static text documents?
  • Do you have a specific problem that you feel might be solved by document programming?
    • adding interactivity to documents?
    • automating the creation of documents?
  • Are there any constraints that have a bearing on possible solutions?
  • Do you have some sort of an idea as to how to solve the problem?
    • Would it be useful to dynamically create documents from text held in a database?
    • Do you want to include Word-to-PDF conversion as part of an automated process?
    • Would it be useful to have Word-to-PDF conversion with features not currently available?
  • Do you spend a lot of time adding links and other features to PDFs by hand?

Current resources

  • Do you have programmers who could work programmatically with documents?
    • PDF (JavaScript, batch sequences, forms, Perl manipulation)
    • Word (VBA)
    • Perl, other Open Source
  • What is their current level of expertise?
    • they program documents already
    • good programmers, no experience in document programming