Re: new NIH forms Caskey, William PhD. 12 Jul 2001 12:56 EST

The new PDF forms certainly make completing the forms easier. But, the
underlying JavaScript needed to enable calculations, for example, really
makes form filling slooooow when any real sophistication is added to the
calculation capabilities. And in so programming, one has essentially
programmed a mini-spreadsheet. I'm more intrigued with the promise of the
HTML version of the forms since Word and Excel both read and write HTML.
Hopefully, we can easily integrate the forms into the appropriate program,
use the inherent capabilities of these programs to perform the formatting
and calculations, then use Binder to put together a complete proposal in one
package. Having to do calculations, etc. using one set of software, then
re-entering the information into another not only wastes time but also
introduces opportunities for errors.

On another note, those adopting the PDF format might want to look at
deploying a site license of Adobe Business Tools which allows users to fill,
save, and print iPDF forms but not create (or change?) forms. Business Tools
sells for slightly less than Acrobat. Of course, key individuals will need
Acrobat to tweak the forms for specific needs...Bill

Bill Caskey, PhD
Director, Research & Grants Administration
Children's Mercy Hospital
2401 Gillham Road
Kansas City, MO  64108

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