8 Replies - 645 Views - Last Post: 02 July 2018 - 03:29 AM

#1 MDX91   User is offline

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Probably a stupid question

Posted 02 July 2018 - 12:20 AM

But I have no background in anything programming related except some 8 year old kid html fascination from back in the late 90s. Anyways, I'm wondering if anyone here could point me in the right direction for information on programming a simple text report generator. As in, we're typing text reports that are structurally identical (template based) save for variables such as name, age, and test results. I know that it's got to be incredibly simple to put together a program where you input name, age and text results and program x information to write to y location within the underlying text template on a text document. But I have no idea what to search under to find some answers besides delving into and getting familiar with the whole language. If someone can point me in the right direction of what to search for, that would be rather appreciated.

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Replies To: Probably a stupid question

#2 Dormilich   User is offline

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Re: Probably a stupid question

Posted 02 July 2018 - 12:41 AM

The question is if it must be done through a programming language. Usually office software also provides means to do that (=> 'form letter' or similar). Even PDFs can be used for that (=> PDF form).
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#3 ndc85430   User is online

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Re: Probably a stupid question

Posted 02 July 2018 - 01:04 AM

Where is the data stored? If it's in some database or something, then it would make sense to write a program to access it and generate the reports.
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#4 mkkekkonen   User is offline

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Re: Probably a stupid question

Posted 02 July 2018 - 01:16 AM

I don't know if there's an easier solution than actually learning a programming language. If you have time/are interested, you could start with Python, it's quite intuitive and easy to learn.
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#5 MDX91   User is offline

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Re: Probably a stupid question

Posted 02 July 2018 - 01:31 AM

Data is analog (ie on paper) before being typed. Just seems like a complete waste of time to me to open a template word document and replace the "??" wherever the variables go through a bunch of mouse and typing action rather than just putting the variables into a form that you can tab through and clicking 'go' to get an identical result. I'll look into the form letter thing on word, I just think that, from my limited html experience, it should be simple enough to program something more efficient to use than any of the tools on word.
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#6 mkkekkonen   User is offline

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Re: Probably a stupid question

Posted 02 July 2018 - 01:44 AM

I actually think that generating PDF of Word documents programmatically is non-trivial. There's formatting and other issues involved. Of course, if you find a powerful library for document generation, that might solve the problem.
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#7 MDX91   User is offline

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Re: Probably a stupid question

Posted 02 July 2018 - 01:46 AM

Been plenty interested since I was a kid, time aspect is a little lacking though. Know I'd be able to figure it out pretty easily if I just sat down and learned a language. I'm just hoping to find some direction on some specific key words to search under, because every search I've tried in the past hasn't been that helpful as far as the specific thing I'm looking for, so I finally came to the conclusion that I didn't know Jack squat about whatever the hell this category of programming would be called.
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#8 MDX91   User is offline

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Re: Probably a stupid question

Posted 02 July 2018 - 01:53 AM

LOL. Document generation. That might do it. Thank you.
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#9 mkkekkonen   User is offline

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Re: Probably a stupid question

Posted 02 July 2018 - 03:28 AM

Here's one option:
PyFPDF
Documentation

Here's another:
python-docx
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