You can create individual Instant Database records that are perfectly usable by Pathagoras' Instant Database system using any program (PC or web based) that can generate a CSV (comma separated value) file.
First, a bit of super easy 'technical' stuff:
•Pathagoras stores the individual Instant Database records as separate .csv files. These files are stored in a single folder.
•When you initially install Pathagoras, the IDB folder is located as "C:\Program Files\Pathagoras\IDBS". (You can move the location of the folder. If you have done so, and forgot where you put it, click here for instructions on how to determine its location)
•When you press Alt-D (or otherwise call up the Instant Database screen), Pathagoras will read the names of each ".csv" file then present in the IDB folder. It then sorts the names alphabetically and pours the alphabetized list into the 'Existing Records' drop down list in the upper right corner of the screen.
•The 'read' of the .csv files into Pathagoras' memory is 'dynamic.' That is, every time you call up Instant Database, the folder is read anew and any new records that were placed into the folder since your last 'read' will be shown without any additional work on your part.
•The consequence of the last bullet point is that if you manually add a .csv file to the list, it too will be seen by Pathagoras the next time you display the Instant Database screen. So, if you can cajole your external program to create a single record's worth of information into a .csv file into the proper folder, that new .csv file will be displayed along with the other .csv files.
•Likewise, if you have an Intake Form creator (perhaps you have purchased one of ours or have designed your own Intake Form) that creates a .csv file in the style outlined below, you have all you need to add records to your system. Click the link to find out more about our Design-a-Form (Intake Form) services.
All third party programs have the means to export a single record into a .csv file. Your 'job' is to figure out how to do that, and then to just do it. You will need to consult your program's documentation to figure out the steps. Typically, it will be an operation called Export and typically that operation can be found under the "File" menu.
A few more points and requirements:
•The exported record must be in 'comma separated value' ('.csv') format. As you follow the steps to export the record from your third party database program, this invariably will be an option that is presented to you.
•If offered, you should select "Quote comma" separation. If not offered, don't panic. Pathagoras can handle the conversion when it sees and begins to import the record.
•The exported record must consist of two lines and only two lines.
1.The first line of the record must contain the field names. For what we hope are obvious reasons, these field names must be identical to names you have assigned to the variables in your source documents. So, if your external database has field names of "Client Name", "Spouse Name", etc. your 'Pathagorized' document variables must be [Client Name]" and "[Spouse Name]" If it is something else, there can be no matching up.
(Note: If, while exporting the data, your external database can add the square brackets that denote 'variable' within Pathagoras, great! But if your program cannot add the brackets, don't worry. Pathagoras will add them for you.)
2.The second line of the record must contain the 'personal' values that will be substituted for the variable at document assembly time. These values must be in the same order as the field names of the first line. (This ordering, including necessary commas to indicate 'blanks,' is handled automatically by the export program of your external database. So while the rule is essential, compliance is actually automatic. Just don't 'mess' with the result in a way that might violate the rule.)