Lee(?) Here's something right up your alley, I'll bet.
Since I'm obviously not going to master XML by the 941 filing deadline (Tomorrow), I'm reduced to filing on paper for this quarter. Problem is: I'll never be able to fill in the pdf forms (too many and too clumsy and I'll make mistakes), and I can't line up the printing(sometimes partial spaces)to print on the paper forms.
I tried the following for employer Identification number but one space isn't enough and two is too much; and I'm about to come upon the same problem separating the dollars from the cents to print on either side of the preprinted decimal point. Maybe a vertical problem as well. IRS requsts you use Courier 12.
er_EIN = '123456789'
er_Parsed_EIN = " "
er_EIN.0 = 9
do aa = 1 to er_EIN.0
er_Parsed_EIN.aa = SUBSTR(er_EIN,aa,1)
if (aa = 2) then
push er_Parsed_EIN er_Parsed_EIN.aa' ' /* more space following 2nd character of EIN */
push er_Parsed_EIN er_Parsed_EIN.aa' '
I'll eMail you the form if you want to see what I mean.
Got it and provided what I hope is a solution.
Good deal Gary - I actually enjoyed working on this solution. That micrometer I had in my tool box (from a previous line of work) actually worked quite well in spacing out the data for this IRS form. Like so many other programming challenges, the first run takes a bit of work, but after that the code is reusable many, many times. Maybe the IRS won't change the forms much next year. :-)
Man, what a solution. It took some tweaking to work on my printer, but the result is beautiful. I'll contact you next week with the changes I made and some cosmetic issues remaining. Thank you, Lee.
This soltion could be useful for many others who do payrolls. Even inputting the data(xcept the demographic data which is the same every quarter and can be stored in a text file or even right in the program) using the ten-key pad and <Enter>, I can complete about 25 forms an hour virtually error-free, more if I pull the data from my system. Filling out the PDF form by tabbing around from one field to the next, putting dolars in one field and cents in another, etc., I'm lucky to do six and with lots of errors.
A long time ago, IRS provided software to complete the forms for elecronic filing. I see now that was essentially a PDF based system. Job Security was built in by hard coding in the year; every year you had to download a new version of the program, even though other than one minor change to the monthly payer threshold one year, the year was the only thing that changed. They eventually stopped providing the program because they were not allowed to "compete with the private sector". I tried to get them to provide the script for printing the actual form but that was "proprietary". Anyway, the program I had to develope is way far better, or was until this new XML requirement. sorry to ramble on.