In order to operate, the components need access to a backend LiveDocx server.
> If LiveDocX stop his service, this (wrapper) library stop too.
The backend LiveDocx server is free to use. Period. We have no intention of stopping the service. In the case that you wish to generate 1000s of documents every day, it is possible to rent your own LiveDocx server or, in the case that you wish to create 10000s of documents per day, you can even purchase a LiveDocx license and install it in your own local network. But there is NOTHING forcing you to do this. The LiveDocx server embedded in Zend_Service_LiveDocx_MailMerge is free to use!
> Using FPDF (http://www.fpdf.org/) is more secure and Open Source !
FPDF offers what we refer to as the "programmatic" approach. This approach offers total control of the resulting PDF. However, it requires that the x and y coordinates of every line of text, every geometrical shape and graphic be set from program code. Not only is this an extremely time-consuming solution, but is also very brittle: Every time a graphical designer changes the layout of a document, a programmer must re-work his or her program code.
Zend_Service_LiveDocx_MailMerge offers an entirely new third approach, we refer to as the "template" approach. This entirely cross-platform approach relies on templates being created in a WYSIWYG environment, such as Microsoft Word, and then being populated with data from PHP. The resulting document can be saved not only to PDF, but also DOCX, DOC and RTF.
If there is anything else you would like to know about Zend_Service_LiveDocx, please do not hesitate to contact me.
Don Bledsoe - 2009-10-10 20:02:01 - In reply to message 3 from Jonathan Maron
I am extremely interested in your approach as it makes sense for applications where non-progammers want to do extensive customization of documents. In particular, the hosting billing system I use uses the programmatic approach and it's a nightmare of trial-and-error to make even the simplest of changes to the format of the customer invoice. For many small web hosts, they only need to generate several hundred documents each month.
The prospect of simply designing the layout in Word and saving it in the application system to make invoices look more professional is more than just desirable. It's a necessity.
I would like to know ...
What is involved in running the LiveDocx server? For example, is it easy to add to an existing cPanel/WebHostManager hosting server for all users to have access to? Can it be installed on a per-domain basis like a library that the application simply calls? I suspect that the implementation of the backend will dictate the usefulness of the Zend_Service_LiveDocx for the average web user, so the easier it is to implement, the easier and faster it will be adopted.