|★ APPLICATIONS ★ PAO/PRESSE ★ EASY LABELLER|8000PLUS) ★|
|Easy Labeller||Applications Pao/presse|
Easy Labeller is the more expensive of the two programs reviewed and has obviously had more effort put into the features it provides, if not the presentation.
On loading, the user is presented with a fairly unfriendly sign on message and a blank line awaiting the instructions you wish to give. This unfriendliness is really only superficial as by typing 'HELP' at any time a list of the available commands and brief functions is shown, and can even be printed out. You are reminded of this option any time you seem to be struggling.
The bad news is that the program uses up an entire blank formatted disk for data storage, fitting about 1000 labels per disc. At the end of the working session the computer muse be told to close down the data files or they will be corrupted. This is always a dangerous system, as you live in constant dread of a power failure.
The greatest shock - reach for the migraine tablets -comes when you realise that there is no ‘data import' option. All those hundreds of names you have already entered into your database are worth absolutely zip. You have to enter them all over again.
Each label you add to the data file is given a category number from I to 99 which is used to group data into segments which can then be selected and printed exclusively, eg. all customers that have bought a Sierra, an Escort or an Orion and so on. You can target mail shots to any one particular group this way.
Pressing [EXIT] jumps you to a small image of the chosen label into which you can enter the text using a reasonable selection of word processor-like commands. An extremely irritating feature is that as soon as each label is completed you are returned back to the main menu which again slows the entry process down, or at least feels like it does.
There are certain special characters that do useful things on labels. When printing, if the label has a '?' character, this will be replaced by the current date. '$' will also be replaced by an incremental serial number which can be set before printing. Any text on a line after the '[' character will act as a comment and will not be printed. A will be replaced by the ‘message of the day', such as "Happy Christmas to all our Readers", which can be defined by the user at print time. A wide choice of print styles can be mixed in the label.
Once defined, there is a ‘Find' command that will search for a given text string anywhere in a label and prepare the first match it finds for editing or printing.
The printing facilities are very good - any lines of the label can be omitted and the remainder printed in any order. Any number of copies of an individual label can be printed by specifying its name, or a range of labels can be printed by specifying the category they belong to and the start name.
The label types and position can be redefined by altering the settings for margin, the sideways gap between labels in the web, the number in the web. and the gap between labels down the sheet. With the test mode, you can demonstrate your chosen settings on ordinary paper, so you can experiment without wasting valuable labels.