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How to Use Image Database and Image Data Types

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This video shows how to add your images to the line item image database then add Image data type fields so you can add things like product thumbnails into your line item data output.

Read this related article: How to Write a Business Proposal That Wins

Proposal Pack HelpWatch this related video: How to use Data Types in Line Item Databases

In this video we're going to show how the image database works with the Image data type in the line item quoting system. This is useful for say creating product thumbnails like product shot thumbnails that you want to output into your Cost Summary but you can use it for any list of images that you might want to be outputting for any kind of custom database. So we've set up some images and because we're going to illustrate creating sets of images for different categories and for how to efficiently import the images we're going to put each group of images we're going to import into each category into their own subfolders.

So you can see here we have three subfolders each with the images that are go into a separate category and we've created an extra image called Missing and that's just going to be a default image we put in the database definition for when someone doesn't select an image for example. All right, so we have our images set up and we'll go into our Preferences, click the Data and Display tab, the Line Item Quote Database button and we're going to create a custom database. Because we're going to illustrate a three category database with different sets of images for each category we're going to start with our Basic Four Category Quote and we're going to clone a copy of that.

All right, now we have a complete copy of that database. We always want to clone the stock databases just to keep those pristine and we'll start making some edits here because we're going to show three categories. Let's start by deleting one of the categories.

We'll delete Category 4 just to clean things up a little bit. We're going to create the images first before we start adding Image data types to the definition. One of the reasons for that is when we add the Image data types it's going to check to see if their images are already available for selecting say our default image.

Well, we kind of want it in the database already. So we'll start with the image database and this is another reason why we made the change to the database first. We want to get the structure of the database complete before we start adding things to it because it's going to give us a list of tabs of all the available categories and we saw we removed Category 4 here.

Now you see All and then each category. So, All that's where you want an image available to the user to select no matter what category they're adding line items to. So All is a globally available image.

If you want to restrict the user to only seeing the images when they're doing their data entry for that category then you can import your images specifically into categories. So when we do the Add Images button down here and import an entire folder of images or browse to and select a single image you'll want to to have the category tab or the All tab selected first because that's what it's going to go into. We'll start with the All and we're going to import our Missing image that's going to be our default.

We're going to browse to that file specifically. So we're going to select our Missing JPEG and you can name this anything you want. This is just a setting of a default image.

All right so you can see it's imported the image, it's assigned a tag to it. The tag codes will be automatically generated. You've got the label which is just pulled from the file name and you can rename that if you want.

So this is just going to be what you see in drop down lists of images to make your image selections make more sense. All right, so now we're going to import the images into each specific category. So I'll select Category 1, click Add Images and now we're going to import an entire folder of images.

I'll go to my first folder I created of 10 images here. As soon as I clicked that it imported all 10 images. I'll just do that for each category.

All right, now we have all the images imported. Now I'm going to go and make some quick edits to the names just to make our drop downs look a little nicer. You just do that by highlighting one at a time and click Edit.

I'll just make a minor change to the names. I'll just skip ahead here as I do these. All righty, so I've gone through and done some renaming now I want to change some ordering as well.

So you can see with the numbering system how it kind of got the numbers in alphabetical order which isn't exactly visually what we want so we can move the order down just to make the lists cleaner. So I'll just fix these three up and now we have our image database completely set up and have our missing and all three categories done. So now we can go and add some line item fields.

I have three categories in the database, we're going to add an image thumbnail field to each category. We're just going into Category 1 and add a new field. Give it a code IMG.

It doesn't matter what code you give it. We're going to make it an image data type. As soon as I change it to an Image data type it gives me a dropdown and you can see it gives me all global and all category specific images to pick from.

Since we're setting this up as the database definition we are going to select our default image to be the Missing one every time as that's going to be overridden by the data entry. We're going to change the order. Let's put the image thumbnail right after the description and we'll just do that for each of the three categories.

All righty, now we have an image database set up, we have image fields with defaults added to each category. Do a quick test on the database to make sure everything's okay. This is why we want to do a test because oh we found an error.

We probably made a little mistake so let's go back into Edit Definition. What we did is when we deleted the category we forgot to delete a couple global fields that uses calculations for that Category 4. All right, so let's make sure we delete this.

So we just have to adjust a couple calculations to remove references to that removed Category 4. So when we had removed Category 4 it had also removed any specific global fields that were tied directly to it but it can't go and edit calculations. Those have to be done manually.

So this is a good thing to show you is to make sure that when you're editing these databases and removing things especially an entire category that you go and clean everything up. Another thing we could have done is we could have just gone and marked that Category 4 as invisible. All right, so we've removed any references.

We'll go and test this database again and there we go test is successful. The image database, all our images, calculations and removal of the fourth category all pass the tests. Okay, now we can go put this into use.

What we're going to do here is we'll also go create some premade line items because once you start getting a little more complex with your database definitions, you get more fields, you're not going to be going in doing things like entering line item weights and picking thumbnails every time you do data entry. You're going to create pre–made drop–down lists of your say products and services. There's another video that shows that.

We'll just do it here, we'll skip ahead real quick and go add some premades. So we go and Edit Definition, click Line Item Data tab over here and we're going to go and manage the pre–made line item data. For Category 1, I'll just add one here then I'll skip ahead.

Adding line items for pre made is just like you'd be adding line items for your actual projects and whatever we add here is pre–made will become a dropdown. We'll do add new line item and I'm going to bring up my images just so I can as I'm adding line items I can kind of look at the images and come up with a better description. So we've got our Abstract Art #1.

That's our description and that's going to be the art number one image. Who knows, maybe this is a product database where we're selling artwork so maybe it has a weight to it say 1 pound. That will will help you determine your shipping costs.

This way we only set up things like the description, image, weights, prices once and then when you're doing the data entry for each project you really only have to pick the pre–made from a drop down and enter the quantity. I've added one and I'm going to add everything here and then I'll skip ahead in the video. All right, now we're adding our 10th and final for this category.

We'll save and close and now you can see we have our 10 pre–made line items already ready here. I'm kind of doing this by hand, we could have exported our database definition to an Excel spreadsheet, filled in the spreadsheet and just do one mass import of everything as well. I'll go to our next category and I'm just going to add all 10 of these, all 10 of the next one then we'll skip ahead in the video.

Okay, now we've added our last of the three categories. You can see we have 30 pre–made line items created for all three categories. Now we're ready to put this into use in a project.

All right, we'll add a new project and we're going to select our image database we've been building. Manage Data now we should see our pre–made line items. Add a new line now you see our pre–mades.

Now instead of having to enter in all of this information every single time we create a project we've got all of our pre–mades. So let's say for this order someone ordered this one and it as soon as we select that it prefills. Got the image selected all that and we'll just select a few of these.

Let's say maybe there's five maybe we're a product supplier and we're supplying these things to other shops that are going to be a reseller. All right, so we've got three items selected and we'll just add a few from each category. All right, now we've got basically nine line items selected, three per category.

We go fill in our globals. Maybe we're going to give this person a discount of $40 and the shipping on an order like that, that's why we've got the weights. What we can do is look at the globals that's why we added weights into.

So now we can see the total weight of the order and then we just do whatever process we do to figure out what our shipping is going to be. Maybe it's a $75 shipping cost and a 6% tax rate. All right, so now that we have all of our data entered just do a quick Test and Preview.

All right, now our preview has been generated let's take a look at that and we can see our image thumbnails have been dropped into the Invoice and into the Cost Summary. Now we can make all sorts of customizations say if we wanted white cell colors you know we can change that. We can change the colors, we can use scaling, we can scale the size of these images in the output.

We can get rid of these borders. So lots of customizations we can do to the visual design here. But now that we kind of like our test and preview, everything's working with the image thumbnails.

We'll just do a full build of an entire document now that test and preview looked good. I'll just add a cover letter, front and back title, introduction, kind of some common templates and we will do a full build. All right the document has been generated.

Let's take a look at it. So here's our full Invoice. See it's added back in the design theme and our full document with the cover letter, front cover, introduction and the cost summary and the back page.

So that is how you can use the image database and the image data types to add images into your line item databases. Now we didn't show it here but you can also put images into global fields if you find a need for that where global field images can be put directly into the body text of pages.

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