III. Link via MultiChoice *Lists*

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   MultiChoice *Lists* (also called 'starred variables' because of the stars --asterisks-- which identify this special kind of variable) offer a flexible and easily managed way to connect a plain text variable to the field values of an external database.

   Let's assume that you have a database that contains a list of 100 products . . . or company names and addresses . . . or attorneys . . . or medications. . . etc. The content of the list doesn't matter..

   Let's further assume that you are using Pathagoras' classic Instant Database system for completing documents. You want to be able to present to the end user a drop down list of possible values (as they exist in the external database) for a particular variable. (This is akin to inserting a 'multiple choice variable' into your document. However, unlike multiple choice variables which typically contain only a few choices, the content of a starred variable can be hundreds of elements, yet take up only as much space in the actual document as the variable name.)

   Example:

[Patient Name] visited the office on [Date of Visit].
For the symptoms presented, we prescribed [*medicine*].

   When the Instant Database screen is opened, and document scanned, the fields [Patient Name] and [Date of Visit] would be displayed and manually completed in the 'normal' fashion. However, the starred variable [*medicine*] would be presented on the Instant Database screen as a drop down list which contains the names of the medicines as contained in the external data source.

   The actual steps you need to linked a starred variable to its data source are detailed in the Pathagoras Help Manual.  Click this link to the Manual for step by step instructions on how to implement this very powerful tool.