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Old January 3rd, 2008, 06:53 PM
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Default MS Excel and Word Report Design Tool

Worth a look if you want others to do thier own reporting...

Windward Reports, the leader in enterprise report generation, has released the world’s first enterprise reporting software that enables use of Excel as a design tool. The Windward Reports Server Engine is perfect for users creating both java reports and .net reports alike, and now allows users to design reports in both Microsoft Word and Microsoft Excel as well.

Windward, a leader in with its design-in-Word reporting software because of its ease of use, now adds the advantages of Excel to its portfolio of simple-to-use, superior reporting products. Windward’s new AutoTag 6.0 reporting software uniquely uses Excel to intelligently figure out sums and number formatting, and allows users to build a table which supports calculations. AutoTag 6.0 still outputs to Word, or any other output format, to produce reporting documents.

Why is this Excel release so important? Simply put: Freedom. By creating an easy-to-use design tool which allows users to design their reports in Excel (in addition to word), Windward is freeing up thousands of IT man-hours normally allocated to report design, and including Excel business users in their ‘power-to the people’ philosophy. Now, non-technical business users who prefer Excel, can design their own reports and stay within their comfort zone while doing so. Windward Reports AutoTag for Excel doesn’t just look like Excel, it IS Excel.

How Does It Work? Begin with a worksheet. Using the AutoTag pull-down menu, select a data source such as an SQL database or XML file. (AutoTag works in conjunction with the Windward Reports Standard Server Engine, which gives your PC the ability to communicate with your organization's data sources, such as its SQL databases and XML files.) You use standard Excel commands to format and edit the report, and you assign tags to the data fields using the AutoTag pull-down menu. When finished, you save your template and, if you wish, verify that tags are correct with AutoTag's "validate" function.

What makes this unique? With AutoTag for Excel, your number formatting always carries through – it doesn’t matter if you output to RTF, PDF, or any other type. And, by using Excel templates you have a way to easily, and automatically generate reports that perform calculations on a collection of values! For instance, you might use Excel to sum all of the line-item amounts that are generated by an AutoTag. While AutoTag was always easy to use, this additional capability offers functions not available in a word-designed template, allowing the software to be used by more people, in more ways.

When you generate the report Windward Reports merges this template with the data you have selected. The finished report, with all of your formatting, positioning and design, is available in minutes instead of hours or even days.

Download a demo or check out a sample report at www.windwardreports.com. For more information on how you can use Excel or Word to design your reports, call 303-499-2544.

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Old January 5th, 2010, 10:02 AM
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Default not the only one

Alternative solution: http://www.dancrintea.ro/doc-to-pdf/

Can do the following conversions:
doc --> pdf, html, txt, rtf
xls --> pdf, html, csv
ppt --> pdf, swf

as well as other operations:
- replace strings in DOC, ODT and SXW files - so use them as a kind of templating
- read/write Excel files using simplified API like: getCell(x,y) and setCell(x,y,string)
- hide Excel sheets(secondary calculations for example)
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