If you have variables that, standing alone, don't give the end user enough context for an intelligent response, you can add a 'title' to the variable. A title is simply a word or two at the 'front' of the variable separated from the term with a colon. E.g., [Title:variable].

   Titles are especially helpful with multiple choice variables that could apply to different actors. For example, the multiple choice variable [he/she/they] appearing in the Instant Database screen gives the end user no idea as to who the pronouns refer. But add a title, and the selection is much clearer. E.g., [beneficiary:he/she/they].

   Each separately titled variable will appear as 'stand-alone' to Pathagoras. The title will appear at the left of the IDB screen as discovered by the scan. It also shows at the top of the multiple-choice list at the right.


[Special Order:Yes/No/Not Applicable]

[Priority Mail:Yes/No/Not Applicable]

[Health insurance provider:Husband/Wife]


Default value:

   You can set the default value for a titled variable (whether multiple choice or a single variable by placing a hash tag in front of the desired choice.

[Special Order:Yes/No/#Not Applicable]

Titled variables with single (vs. multiple choice) values provides default:

   A variable containing a title and a single value can be used to provide a 'default value' in the right side of the Instant Database screen.  Examples of such variables: [product:#widget] and [flavor:#strawberry].

   To make the value the default (i.e., filled in automatically) just put a hash tag in front, after the colon). When the document is scanned, the complete variable appears in the left side of the Instant Database screen. The default value is placed in the right column. (If you do not wish the default value to automatically populate the right side of the IDB screen, omit the hash tag. A double click on the variable will accomplish the same result. Of course, you can manually type in any value.)

   For other variables in the document which you wish to have the same value, you need only use the 'title' as the variable.  In other words, after the first entry in the document which establishes the default value, the 'title' becomes the variable. Example:

Thank you for your order of 50 [product:#widgets]. You order entitles you to a coupon for 1 gallon of [flavor:#chocolate mint] ice cream.

You should expect delivery of your order of [product], and your coupon for the [flavor] ice cream, on your doorstep within 3 business days.

Again, thank you for your business. We hope you enjoy both the [product] and the [flavor] ice cream.

   Of course, the 'default' is just a value. You can change the default to any other value you desire.


   'Title' vs. 'GroupName': A title is typically used to modify and distinguish otherwise identical variables from each other. They are also used to offer guidance to the end-user as to what information is being sought. So, a title is 'informational' in nature. A 'group name' is very much functional. It is used to select the same relative item from separate lists. Think pronouns: 'he/she/it' and 'his/hers/its'. Think 'Attorneys' and their respective 'bar numbers.' Read more about GroupNames in the preceding page.

   A groupname can be used as a title, but the better practice is not to do so. A groupname takes a bit more computer time to process as it searches for matching group entries. (So, groupnames should be used only when you wish the other member of the group to 'behave' in the same manner as the first member of the group, use titles when you just need a label.)

   You cannot combine titles and groupnames.

   Every variable potentially could be 'titled.' After all, more information is better than less information. But the better practice would be that you not add a title a variable unless it's really needed to guide the end user. A title takes up space in your document. If it doesn't add to the understandability or functionality of the variable, don't use it.