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Learn about the powerful features available in SmartGuide 5.3

1-click application creation

SmartGuide contains many features that help you quickly build interactive web dialogues. For example, you can automatically create application fields from existing PDF forms by simply checking a box:
Auto-creating fields from a PDF form

The same 1-click mechanism can be used when importing XML schemas (XSD) or connecting to web services and extension functions.

Visual design tools

Using SmartGuide Designer, you can easily manage the entire content and business logic of your applications through visual, drag & drop interfaces. For instance, a field can be added to an application by dragging or double-clicking it onto a page:

You can then easily define field properties, values, help, validation, appearance and actions:
Field editing window in SmartGuide Designer

Visual page flow

SmartGuide automatically creates a visual representation of an application’s pages and the relationship between them, including the branching rules. An integrated editor makes it easy to define the conditions under which users should navigate to certain pages.

Visual function editor

Manipulate field values without writing a single line of code! Point-and-click functions can be applied to strings (upper/lower case, substring, character replacement…), numbers (format number, round, sum…) and dates (current date, difference between two dates…). Compound functions and calculations are natively supported.

Zero-code web service integration

SmartGuide natively supports SOAP and REST web services. To add a connection to a web service, only a definition file (WSDL or WADL) or a sample call is required. The available operations are then automatically extracted and made available through user-friendly interfaces. You can also create application fields automatically using the services you define.

Automatic documentation generation

Put an end to documentation lag! As you build your application, you can generate its documentation on-demand. SmartGuide will automatically generate a customizable Word document that contains a detailed description of the application, including all of its pages, fields, services, files and actions.

PDF prefilling and creation

SmartGuide allows prefilling PDF forms with data you collect—without any coding. No longer do you have to use the same form to capture and store data. This enables you to break down complex forms into a series of logical steps to simplify data collection while still displaying the completed form in a PDF for pixel-perfect printing or archiving.

In addition, SmartGuide can generate PDF files from your applications dynamically. You have total control over the appearance of the resulting PDF documents.

XML document generation

The data-centric nature of SmartGuide makes it possible to use the same collected data to also produce schema-compliant XML streams that can be sent to external systems for further processing. And when you choose to auto-create application fields from a schema (XSD), they automatically inherit any validation rules that were defined in the definition file.

Advanced built-in validations

Perform syntactic validations in 1 click! Many different validations are available out of the box and vary by field type. When creating a text field for example, you can indicate its minimum and maximum allowable lengths, select from pre-defined validations (alphabetic, alphanumeric, email address, phone or fax number, postal code, etc.) and/or use an external service to validate the field. You can also create your own reusable validation rules.

Furthermore, SmartGuide Designer allows performing semantic validations to ensure data conforms to your business rules.

User management and access rights

Create roles to determine who can perform what actions in SmartGuide Designer. You can also define access rights to create different views by user groups (e.g. some extension functions or themes can only be used by a specific group of people).

Workspaces

Personalize your SmartGuide experience through the use of workspaces. Or use them to maintain different versions of Smartlets, extension functions, themes and other resources on the same instance of SmartGuide.

Reusable components

You can define a field once and use it any number of times in different applications to reduce the number of fields you need to create. Once a reusable field is imported from the library, it’s possible to modify its properties without impacting the default settings of the field. For example, a field could be mandatory in one application and optional in another. You can also easily share the value of a field across multiple applications to avoid end users having to re-key the same information.

The same capacity for reuse applies to web services, extension functions, knowledge bases and presentation themes and templates.

Accessible presentation templates

With SmartGuide, you can completely separate an application’s logic and presentation layers. This means a domain expert can fully concentrate on the business logic and content of an application without worrying about its’ appearance. In parallel, a graphic or web designer can focus on creating user-friendly interfaces that are standards-compliant and accessible while working with a familiar technology (JSP, ASPX or HTML).

And once templates are ready, they can be applied to an application in one click. Templates can even be shared by multiple applications. This further reduces time-to-deployment and helps standardize the appearance of content and fields (size of text boxes, location of labels, etc.).

Personalized knowledge bases

SmartGuide also enables you to create knowledge bases using a web-based interface. You can then create filters in order to present only information that is 100% relevant to an end user. There’s no limit to the number or types of knowledge bases that can be created. The same module can therefore be used to create lists of formalities, activities, people, locations, etc.

Powerful API for custom functions

Java and .NET developers can write extension functions to add custom functionalities like setting up autoresponders, performing a series of advanced manipulations on a field, integrating with a database, LDAP or back-end system, etc. A simple configuration file then allows these extension functions to be used in the same manner as web services, therefore making them available to non-technical personnel.

Additional features

  • Create field groups and capture multiple rows of data (e.g. list of people)
  • Deploy applications in multiple languages
  • Easily present a recap of the data end users have entered—and allow them to go back to a specific page to make changes
  • Build components that can be reused across many different applications
  • Set conditions for field visibility, page validation and navigation rules, field values, field validations, service and file mapping rules
  • Call a web service or extension function to initialize an application (e.g. to pre-populate fields)
  • Define actions that should take place on every page load or exit
  • Merge PDFs

INTERESTED IN LEARNING MORE?

Have a look at the system requirements or watch demos of SmartGuide in action.

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