6 Replies Latest reply on May 15, 2009 6:44 AM by Gregory Lafrance

    Working with dynamic documents?

    credosoft

      Hi -  my company is evaluating FLEX for a major new project. We are very impressed so far but are struggling to find a component that will allow us to create a custom report designer / word processor. So far all we seem to come across is buzzword which doesn't appear suitable.

       

      Bascially our clients need to be able to layout a Word style report with tables etc. They then need to be able to map a table cell to a database column. Our software can then dynamically read and write data from a database to the report cells. As our solution is part of a workflow system we also need to be able to enable and disable cells programatically.

       

      A PDF based solution would be ideal.

       

      Hope all this makes sense!

       

      Can anyone recommend a solution.

       

      Thanks in advance

      James

        • 1. Re: Working with dynamic documents?
          Srirangan

          Hi,

           

          I don't think you'll find one single component that will do everything that you need. But there are a bunch of ways through which you can use the default MX components or purchase components/controls from the market and use them to develop the application you need.

           

          I would suggest looking at these for a spreadsheeting component within Flex:

          http://osflash.org/projects/flex-spreadsheet

          http://blogs.zdnet.com/Stewart/?p=648

          http://www.rogue-development.com/blog2/2008/03/flex-spreadsheet-first-release/

          http://code.google.com/p/flex-spreadsheet/

           

          This will give you the basic UI base which can then be integrated with server side code to link it with a database.

           

          - Sri

          1 person found this helpful
          • 2. Re: Working with dynamic documents?
            credosoft Level 1

            Thanks Sri

             

            We are starting to think you are probably correct which is pretty disappointing. Going to keep looking but looks like billy gates WPF are going to win this one...

             

            Cheers

            • 3. Re: Working with dynamic documents?
              Michael Borbor Level 4

              Why do you say so?

               

              Sincerely,

               

              Michael

               

              El 15/05/2009, a las 7:15, credosoft <forums@adobe.com> escribió:

               

              >

              Thanks Sri

              >

              We are starting to think you are probably correct which is pretty 

              disappointing. Going to keep looking but looks like billy gates WPF 

              are going to win this one...

              >

              Cheers

              >

              • 4. Re: Working with dynamic documents?
                Michael Borbor Level 4

                I think you're gonna need to build the whole word-like UI, and once 

                the report is created use AlivePDF to convert it to PDF.

                 

                Sincerely,

                 

                Michael

                 

                El 15/05/2009, a las 5:41, credosoft <forums@adobe.com> escribió:

                 

                >

                Hi -  my company is evaluating FLEX for a major new project. We are 

                very impressed so far but are struggling to find a component that 

                will allow us to create a custom report designer / word processor. 

                So far all we seem to come across is buzzword which doesn't appear 

                suitable.

                >

                Bascially our clients need to be able to layout a Word style report 

                with tables etc. They then need to be able to map a table cell to a 

                database column. Our software can then dynamically read and write 

                data from a database to the report cells. As our solution is part of 

                a workflow system we also need to be able to enable and disable 

                cells programatically.

                >

                A PDF based solution would be ideal.

                >

                Hope all this makes sense!

                >

                Can anyone recommend a solution.

                >

                Thanks in advance

                James

                >

                • 5. Re: Working with dynamic documents?
                  Barna Biro Level 3

                  Hi there,

                   

                  Michael has a good point there. You'll need to build your custom UI and use AlivePDF to export PDF files or why not write your own exporter? From my point of view, there's no problem with the technology, Flex can surely handle what you are trying to do ( obviously, with a bit of help from a server-side language that can talk to the server, send data, parse data and so on ). I think that you need to ask your self "are my people experienced enough to build something like that from the ground up if needed"? If they are, then I'm sure that you'll succeed with Flex, but if your guys are not as experienced then the technology really does not matter ( in case they have more experience with MS technologies and C# then choose the technology that you are proeficient with ).

                   

                  Again, I'm quite sure that it can be done with Flex. The only "problem" is that you'll have to build most of the stuff from scratch, don't plan on finding something on Google that can be used "out of the box" ( I'm quite sure that this is the case with the other technologies too, even WPF ).

                   

                  With best regards,

                  Barna Biro

                  Blog: http://blog.wisebisoft.com

                  • 6. Re: Working with dynamic documents?
                    Gregory Lafrance Level 6

                    The fact that no one has built a reporting / word processing application in Flex you can purchase and incorporate into your own offerings does not automatically mean Microsoft and WPF is on-track to unseat Flex/AIR from its current domination of first place in the up-and-coming RIA technolgies.

                     

                    As others have mentioned, in your case you need to build your own, although along the way you will surely find examples of code you can use as you build your app.

                     

                    If you know .NET already, stick with Silverlight. If not, learn /use Flex. The technologies will be successful in a parallel fashion for now.