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Tony
16-04-2016, 04:04 PM
I have a Gmail account that I never use, so I'm totally unfamiliar with how it all works.

I'm doing some stuff for a club I'm involved in and it involves generating forms in HTML format in the body of the message in emails to send to members for them to complete and return. This all works OK in Outlook but when I send one to my Gmail account I don't seem to be able to edit the form as part of the reply - as I can with Outlook. If this isn't possible with Gmail I have a big problem.
Questions:
Am I missing something with Gmail? Is there a way I can effectively incorporate the form in edited form into my reply?
Does the same thing occur with other email clients (Thunderbird, Yahoo etc etc)?

TIA

Greg
19-04-2016, 08:20 AM
Just fyi Gmail and Yahoo aren't exactly email clients - they're webmail. You can however create a multi user account in Gmail where people can input, but I don't know the specifics of how to do. I think you may need a paid Gmail account to be able to do it.

Tony
19-04-2016, 09:12 AM
Just fyi Gmail and Yahoo aren't exactly email clients - they're webmail. You are right, of course. For my project I can't rely on users having any sort of specific email facility, so whatever I do has to be totally generic. Its starting to look like I'm going to have to generate documents and attach them to the emails, which is a lot more cumbersome to produce and also more time consuming for the recipient.

dugimodo
19-04-2016, 10:30 AM
Any possibility of hosting the form online somewhere and just E-mailing a link to it?
Not my area, but that's what my employer tends to do when they require us to fill out forms, or it just comes as an attachment.

Tony
19-04-2016, 11:00 AM
Any possibility of hosting the form online somewhere and just E-mailing a link to it?
Not my area, but that's what my employer tends to do when they require us to fill out forms, or it just comes as an attachment.That is actually the long term plan, to have the whole thing online via a members' only section of the club website. Not my responsibility any more thank goodness, and it ain't gonna happen any time soon which is why we are looking at this interim solution. I might look at whether we can do a quick fix of the type you suggest though.

zqwerty
19-04-2016, 07:24 PM
https://www.google.co.nz/docs/about/

Tony
19-04-2016, 08:52 PM
https://www.google.co.nz/docs/about/Interesting. I've had no experience with Google Docs. So how does it work? I create a document and store it on Google Docs. So what do my 350 users have to do to access it, make their own copy and then what? Email it? Is that right?

zqwerty
19-04-2016, 09:13 PM
I haven't fully understood what it is that you wish to do, but you would create the doc on google docs then give access to any and all that you wish, they can update the doc on google docs, ie add their names and details in appropriate places, then after all is satisfactory, as deemed by you, you give instructions for everyone to download and print their own hard copy.

Tony
19-04-2016, 10:07 PM
I haven't fully understood what it is that you wish to do, but you would create the doc on google docs then give access to any and all that you wish, they can update the doc on google docs, ie add their names and details in appropriate places, then after all is satisfactory, as deemed by you, you give instructions for everyone to download and print their own hard copy.I thought that might be it. What I am wanting to do is process annual membership renewals, so each individual has to be able to obtain their own copy of the document, then update it with their own individual details and then either email it to the club or store it somewhere that the club can get to. I guess Dropbox would be another option, but I don't want each individual member to have to go through some sort of registration process so they can read/store stuff.

SurferJoe46
20-04-2016, 03:11 AM
FWIW: Using Google docs is limiting in a few ways and then again - somewhat more of what you need in the long run --- but with a big bad caveat at the end here.

First, you'd have to generate the document you want - I guess leaving blanks where you need the recipients to insert information, etc, and then have them send it back to you. This appears to be your desire - right?

I see that you'd have a problem doing this in your (MUA or client*) email form - since you don't know how the recipient opens the email and there may be restrictions on that on their end. I use copy/paste to change or add to an email and then click REPLY, but the original doc is not changed - just the amended c/p is so. That's pretty easy and promises security of the (personal?) answers so they cannot be perused by others who get the same document.

There are certain privacy laws in the US that I assume are in place in NZ too - I just always see the dark side of most things, so you might want to ignore me on this point.

That said, you could use Google docs, but therein lies a fly in your Fosters: you'd have to allow them to write on or into your document by including them in (global?) permissions, which seems to be the only viable option, AFAIK.

Then they'd have to use the line-editing capability to make their entries and just re-post it and leave it where it would be re-editable and readable by anyone with those same privileges. Not a great idea I think.

I use G-Docs a lot and have not seen the ability to separately use, re-issue and not have that document then go public for the others with the same permissions. The others would be able to see, modify and repost to the original and now modified ---> doc.


__________________________________________________ _________

Have you considered a PDF? There are versions that are 'receiver-editable' and then they could return the filled-in doc to you in their (whatever) email client.

The dark side again speaking here: privacy is almost guaranteed in a PDF, except where you divulge or make reference to someone's entries to the public; if that be the case. More of my dark side: get a/an R.O.I. signed by everyone - but again you can ignore this if you want to, because of my disclaimer.



*MUA or client - more correctly stated as how someone reads, generates and send/receives email, is called a "Mail User Agent" --- 'client' is not totally correct but has become so (incorrectly) by use.

I hope I got this right and understandable --- but I'm old.............and addled.

.

Tony
20-04-2016, 06:56 AM
Thanks SJ, you've summed things up well I think. What you say about Google Docs exactly matches what I thought - its not really an option for what I am trying to achieve. Yes I have thought about PDF. I can certainly create a personalised PDF and attach it to an email programmatically via Access VBA, although the process is quite cumbersome IMO. It is also a bit cumbersome for the recipient, who will have to save the attachment, open it and add the appropriate data, then save and attach it to another email to send back to the club - unless there is something I am missing? I also know about PDF fillable forms, but AFAIK you can't create those via Access VBA, so I would have to create a generic one separately and attach it programmatically. That fixes things my end but we are still left with a long-winded process for the recipient.

ATM I'm still looking at creating a form on the club website with an "email me" button, and sending the email to all club members with a link. Still not ideal, but it will do until the full web-based mechanism is implemented at some unknown time in the future.

Thanks for the suggestions.

SurferJoe46
20-04-2016, 08:38 AM
VBA is a programming language - far outta my and maybe your ability. It's part of a lot of things, Excel being one of them and something I stay far away from at all cost.

I have a friend in Hamilton who does just this same thing (as you need) - and he can set it up for one month for $65 USD, which I think is kinda high, but makes a very doable form up to 5 pages - and if you need to run a second month, it's only $35 USD.

Adobe Acrobat is a lot more I think - with a yearly commitment. My friend says that with a one year commitment, I think he said it would drop to around $19 USD a month.

There are some free ones though, and I've not tried them - but they exist. Form Swift (http://formswift.com/sem/edit-pdf?utm_source=google&utm_medium=cpc&utm_term=fillable%20pdf&utm_content=97604041458&utm_campaign=freewrite__edit_pdf__edit_pdf__search&u_adgroup=fillable__e&u_network=g&u_device=c&u_placement=&u_country=us&u_producttype=formswift&u_product=free_write&u_matchtype=e&u_landingpage=uniform5&u_aceid=4652103&u_adposition=1t3&headline=Fill%20Out%2C%20Edit%2C%20%26%20Print%20P DF%20Files%20Free%20Online&gclid=CMuHuvjDm8wCFQmSaQod4X8Dlw) is one of them - again - one that I have not used.

1101
20-04-2016, 08:46 AM
but therein lies a fly in your Fosters:

thats a bit of a low blow, calling us Aussies :)

SurferJoe46
20-04-2016, 09:02 AM
I just figgered that youse guys import that beer, as good as it is I hear.

So insinuating that a fly might wind up in a very valuable and precious Fosters, would make all youse guys angry to the point of really paying attention to the warning.

My heart is always in the right place for Kiwis.

Tony
20-04-2016, 09:26 AM
VBA is a programming language - far outta my and maybe your ability....I'm familiar with VBA and have used it quite extensively in the admin application I developed for the club. That side of things is not an issue - I started in IT in 1968 and have been a programmer since 1970 (now retired from paid work :):):)). I'm confident I can set things up once I know what is the best vehicle. As I said the form on a web page looks like the best interim solution (which I can also set up).

Why would anyone drink Fosters when there is an alternative? A fly might actually improve it.