Having one's cake and eating it too.

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   If you decide to implement links to your external data source(s), you will have a 'reward' for doing so. The reward is in the nature of "Having your cake and eating it, too." Or, to call on another overused cliché, "You can have the best of both worlds." That is because Instant Database is still there to fill in the gaps.

   Link to your external database to take advantage of the extensive information stored there. Create the merge fields for the data stored in the data source. For the rest of the information needed, just create standard, plain text [bracketed variables]. At document assembly time, use Pathagoras' External Database tools to link to and replace the data fields. Use Instant Database to identify, complete and store the additional data.