ScanSoft launches hosting service for electronic forms

ScanSoft launches hosting service for electronic forms

For the big-time government forms'W-2, SF-171, even the 1040'the goal is clear. They must be digital and Web-enabled, with the ability to transmit information back to a database, by the end of 2003.

Any form used more than 500 times a month will have to meet the online standard. But what of the small-time forms? What about something used infrequently?

ScanSoft Inc., which recently acquired Caere Corp. of Los Gatos, Calif., is offering as a forms hosting service specifically aimed at small organizations.

The service's Web site features technology that claims to publish forms online with a click of a button without the need for Hypertext Markup Language, Dynamic HTML or common gateway interface programming. The forms hosting program would eliminate the expensive, time-consuming work necessary to develop and maintain a data collection web site.

Once a form is posted at, anyone with a browser can access it and fill it out online.

The service is also designed to work with OmniForm 4.01, the recently released version of ScanSoft's electronic forms software. Together, and OmniForm 4.01 provide what the company says is industry's only paper-to-Web forms hosting service.

The service automatically saves completed forms in its database, eliminating the need for data entry and file cabinet storage. OmniForm 4.01 also features a set of design tools for converting paper forms to the Web and for designing forms from scratch. The features also allow users to update or edit forms online.

The hosting service is included with the OmniForm software. The company's basic service allows OmniForm customers to post up to five forms and collect 10,000 entries.

After the first year, the same service is available for $49.95 per year.

'Mark A. Kellner

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