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Word Perfect-like templates possible with OOo Writer?

 
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DigitaLink
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2005 8:22 am    Post subject: Word Perfect-like templates possible with OOo Writer? Reply with quote

Coming from a heavy WordPerfect using background, I'd love to be able to switch to OOo for work, but the problem is I make constant use of WP templates that open up a form to automatically enter common information to a series of pages. (The form pops up, I enter info, hit OK and it inserts the data in pre-determined locations. WP users will understand this) Is there something similar to this in OOo? I've dug around a bit, and I can't find anything similar. Am I missing it? Without this feature for my templates, OOo's as useful to me as Word. (Well, OOo's actually still MORE useful now that it will open WPD's!!)
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Iannz
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2005 5:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If I understand what you want correctly I think it can be done in the following way.
To get information from the user when the template is open use an Input Field:
1. Insert > Fields > Other... > (or Control + F2)
2. Functions > Input Field
3. Give the field a name - and some default text.
4. Click OK

There are several ways to to replicate any piece of text including the result of Input Fields, I will describe Set References.
1. Select the text (in this case the Input Field)
2. Insert > Cross Reference... > Set Reference
3. Give the set reference a name
4. Click Insert

5. Position the cursor where you would like the replicated text to go
6. Insert > Cross Reference... > Insert Reference
7. For Selection select the name in step 3
8. For format choose Reference
9. Click Insert.

To create a template:
File > Templates > Save...

Hope this helps.
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JohnV
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2005 6:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My approach is different than Ian's but I use it all the time.

Same Ctrl+F2 but go to the Variable tab and name a User Field, don't assign a value unless you want a a default one, be sure to select Text on the right if that's what you want and click the check mark but don't Insert. Next select Input Field (in this same tab), select your User Field, put your help prompt in the Reference box and Insert. Again, don't actually provide a value unless you want a default one. For any repetition of the field value Insert as the User Field (repeated Input Fields will lead to repeated requests for its value). Save as a template.

Once the doc is populated with the field value you can change it, if needed, with a single click on the InputField or a double click on the User Field. For User Fields (or its Input Field) the change will be global within the doc. If you select a field it can be formatted as with other text, e.g., uppercase, etc. and different occurrences can be formatted differently.


Last edited by JohnV on Thu Feb 03, 2005 5:01 am; edited 2 times in total
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Iannz
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2005 7:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

JohnV's approach is the better approach!
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DigitaLink
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 02, 2005 8:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks guys. I'll have to give that a try. Still trying to get 1.9.74 to install on Xandros ... $@$@#$$%#^^@!@! RPMs ...
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DigitaLink
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 03, 2005 10:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Got 1.9.79 installed in Windows AND Linux now (finally got those RPM's to alien!!), so it's time to start playing. Here's hopin'!!
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Lefo
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 03, 2005 10:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was lurking around this afternoon and saw this thread. Thank you! This solves a problem I've been pulling my hair out over. I'm coming from WP, too.

Thanks again!

Lefo
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DigitaLink
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 03, 2005 12:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, I'm pleasantly surprised at how simply this worked. Thanks a BUNCH for the tips!

I went through the steps JohnV gave, and while not QUITE as slick as the way WordPerfect does things, it works fine nonetheless! This is AWESOME! Once I get templates all set up, I'm going to have to pitch OOo to my boss as a free replacement to WP ... and Word too ...
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DigitaLink
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 03, 2005 1:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Looks like I got my hopes up just a BIT too soon. There's still some kind of bug in the program that is preventing it from saving ... at least on WindowsXP. I'll have to try the templates out at home tonight and see if the Linux version gives me the same problem. But hey, at least the templates are working ... a bit different, but working!

[edit]
Well, seems it's actually just a problem saving MS Word documents!! ODT files save just fine ... and they export to PDF just dandy too. Hmmm ... I'll have to play with it some more.

I'm really liking that it now imports WPD files, unfortunately, they come across looking like a WordPerfect file that was saved in a Word format ... messes some things up, but still usable! I'm sure it's the complicated table layouts and WordPerfect graphics that are causing most of the problems. Ah well. It does what I need it to, and now that I know how the User Input fields work, I can make it REALLY useful!!
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