The Adobe Acrobat inter-connectivity discussed above adds tools that allow PDF sources to be ‘scanned’ and ‘scraped’ so that the end user does not have to retype information that already exists. However, the 'names' of the fields that are being scraped are likely not likely useable by you because they don't match the variables you have adopted to represent [Client Name], [Contact Address], [Child Date of Birth], etc. Government forms are particularly troublesome. For example, the field name on Immigration Form I-130 that asks for the family surname is labeled "F.#subform.TextField1". The date of birth of the first applicant is only slightly more descriptive, but still totally unusable: "F.#subform.Date_of_Birth". These are not likely the field names you have assigned to your Pathagoras documents for cover letters, correspondence with your clients, etc. If there is not a way to tie them together, you will continue to be burdened with having to maintain two sets of data.
Pathagoras allows you create Pairing Tables to fill the need. You can scrape the data from the PDF and (from the first scrape) create a table that tells Pathagoras to automatically replace the obscure field names with meaningful ones for Word/Pathagoras/document assembly purposes.
Here are the steps to create a pairing table (they may seem long, but as you perform each step, its purpose should be clear, and creating subsequent pairing tables should proceed much more smoothly):
1.Start with a completed form. It should be a form with almost all fields completed. The fields should be completed in such a way that you can distinguish one from another. (In other words, if John Doe appears in two different fields playing 2 different roles, change the value of the field slightly to reflect the different role. (Keep in mind creating the pairing table is a one-time only process.)
2.Using the Adobe tool, scrape the data into a Pathagoras Instant Database record.
3.Save the record as an IDB record with a meaningful name AND including the word 'pairing' or 'Pairing' in its name
4.Close the IDB screen and then immediately reopen it. From the Existing Records list, recall the pairing record just saved.
5.Press the red Power Tools button and click the Export button. Export the data to a two column Excel spreadsheet.
6.Almost immediately, an Excel spreadsheet with appear named with the pairing table name you provided earlier.
7.In column B of the spreadsheet, type the name of a typical Pathagoras variable you want to assign to the Adobe field name that shows in column A.
8.When done, save the spreadsheet. (It will automatically be saved in a subfolder called "Pairing Tables" in the same folder where your Instant Database records are stored.
To use a paring table, scrape a form using the Adobe Acrobat tool. When the scraping is complete, click the red Power Tools button at the bottom of the Instant Database screen. Select the button at the bottom of the screen that reads "Pairing Tables'. Select the correct table. Almost instantly, the confusing field names at the left with be replaced with the meaningful Pathagoras variables. You now are ready to save the record and/or replace variables in the underlying document.