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Adobe Acrobat form of a Family Group Sheet

Posted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 6:35 am
by tebbs-p40
The problem will always exist that a family history enthusiast will want genealogical information from relatives who don't do much family history and consequently don't have an easy way to share that information. (It is too much of an overload to tell the less involved relative to download PAF, enter in their family information and then send it back as a GEDCOM file). I've participated in a few of those exchanges for relatives contacting all of the descendants of a person and making sure their information was up to date. How one person does it is she prints out everyone’s family group sheet (about 1000 of us) and takes it to the yearly family reunion so that whoever shows up (about 400 of us) can update their information. Sharing the information in this way seems to cost a lot in money and time and leaves opportunities for mistakes.

I think a better system would be to create an Adobe Acrobat form that could be emailed out to all of the descendants asking them to fill in their family group sheet information and email it back. I think it would be easier to coordinate all of the information in this way rather than calling everyone on the phone or meeting them at reunions. I'd bet that it would just take someone who knew about Adobe forms a few hours to create one. The best would be to create one where default values could be entered and that allow the relative to save changes they have made, but I don't know if those types of forms can be emailed.

Also, in the future it would be great if we could tell PAF to generate forms of Family Group sheets for all of the living descendants of an ancestor, and generated a csv file of the file name, head of house name, and contact information. The csv file would be great so that you could open it up in a spread sheet program to sort off all of the descendants who only have mailing addresses (not email), print out mailing labels, add columns for tracking if they have reported back, and easily import the information into your email clients address book. Additionally it would be great if PAF could interpret the information on that form.

Does anyone know how to make a blank Adobe form so that I could try it out?

Fillable form

Posted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 8:25 am
by The_Earl
Are you looking to make a fillable PDF form? I think you need the full copy of Adobe Acrobat for that.

I don't have a copy myself, but I might be able to get someone to make one for you.

PDF Forums

Posted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 8:31 am
by Roger-p40
I have a FGS and Pedigree chart pdf fill in the blank form. It is set up to send the data to me but someone is free to change the form if you want.

Let me know if you would like a copy of the forms.


Working Copy

Posted: Fri Aug 24, 2007 8:57 am
by ajames
I have attached a rudimentary copy of what I think you are talking about, and it only took me about 5 min. on Adobe Acrobat 8 (using the LiveCycle Designer). Acrobat did most of the work, I just had to fine tune a few things. So, I think this is a pretty easy solution (if you have the software), and with Acrobat 8, you can also compile all the forms for comparison pretty easily too. You will notice also on the top of the FGR, I added a submit by e-mail and print buttons. I think this would also help in it actually making it back to the sender. Just design the e-mail button to send to your address (I only have a sample e-mail linked right now), and the results can be sent as soon as it's finished.

I agree, this would probably be much better than handing out FGRs at a family reunion, especially since these can be saved to keep the information entered, so family members can't complain about having already filled it out.

That looks great

Posted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 6:08 am
by tebbs-p40
That does exactly what I was hoping for and more. I didn't know that you could submit the information on the form without just returning the form - that's great.

Is it possible to save the information in the form like the one at ? I think that would be helpful for people who would like to type in the information from memory first then come back later to add sources before submitting it via email.

Posted: Sat Aug 25, 2007 12:46 pm
by thedqs
Interesting, I didn't know there was even the ability to save form data in a PDF. I think it is up to the creator of the form and if they have the correct license for adding rights to a form.

Posted: Sun Aug 26, 2007 9:53 am
by scion-p40
A Legacy report can be generated for family group sheets that has blank lines for missing information. One of the options is to save in a PDF file. This can be done individually, by tagging selected individuals, focus group, or other sundry options.

Save as GEDCOM

Posted: Sun Aug 26, 2007 9:57 am
by tebbs-p40
Since you can email the data as XML is it possible to email the file as a GEDCOM?

Posted: Mon Aug 27, 2007 7:07 pm
by thedqs
Have the form send a GEDCOM? I do not think so, but have a program that takes the XML and converts it to a GEDCOM is perfectly possible and shouldn't be too hard. I've worked with the GEDCOM format and it is very straight-forward.

Simple Form

Posted: Wed Aug 29, 2007 1:28 pm
by tebbs-p40
I've found out that to create a savable form requires "Adobe LiveCycle Reader Extensions" (see question 10) so if anyone has that extension this would be a simple project for you that would benefit the world. :)
I've fixed the fields from the other file.