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  • Looking Upward & Onward

    In these hard economic times, it's easy to think of reasons not to begin a new project. However, there are some very compelling reasons why right now is an excellent time to conduct an upgrade project. Upgrading to the latest revision of Advantage could not only increase operational efficiencies and reduce costs, but also improve customer service. In addition, implementing new features may well help you to generate additional sales. And when the economy improves, being ready to handle new business could be key to your success. We at ACS can help you to determine if an upgrade makes good business sense for your company. An Advantage upgrade project focuses on the delivery of a new software revision to your site. This delivery brings you: …



  • Kalmbach Publishing: Riding High on the Hobby Train

    This month, Customer Portrait presents Kalmbach Publishing in Waukesha, Wisconsin.  Kalmbach joined the Advantage community in 1982. In 2008, Kalmbach Publishing celebrated their 75th anniversary as a special interest publisher serving a diverse set of hobbyist markets. Kalmbach provides information to their customers through a variety of media channels including books, events, magazines, television partnerships and web sites. Kalmbach editors and many other staff members are active enthusiasts themselves, sharing the same passion and curiosity for their leisure time pursuits as their readers. This mutual enthusiasm fosters long-term relationships with customers, and their Advantage system …



  • Highlights of Advantage 2009R1

    The first release of 2009 offers some exciting new features. Here are just some of the enhancements. Contact your account manager today to learn more. Systems Changes Login Enhancements A new table has been added to store user login information. This table, CDSLGN-D, is populated during the upgrade, and contains the user code (USR-CDE), domain name (DMN-NME), and the user's system login name (USR-LOG). A user can have more than one record, if she/he uses multiple domains. Alternating Row Colors in User Displays With this release, you can configure your Advantage session to display list frame rows in alternating colors; this visual aid can be helpful in setting off rows in long lists from each other. …



  • Paul Sauter: Rising Star in Software Engineering

    Paul Sauter is a second-generation software engineer who can barely remember a time when there wasn't a computer in his home. Still, when he entered the University of Michigan, he wasn't entirely sure what career he wanted to pursue. After just one or two computer engineering classes, however, his path became clear. During college, Paul spent two summers as an intern at ACS and was offered a full-time position at graduation in the spring of 2005. Happily for ACS, he accepted. During the internships, Paul learned a great deal about Advantage and the publishing industry and he was able to really hit the ground running when he joined full-time. He has been a part of the Product Development Group led by Howie Brooks …



  • Database Version Alert for 9R1

    We have posted a minimum system requirement of SQL 2005 in our Release Notes for the 2009R1 release, because the release was developed and tested completely in a SQL 2005 environment. This means that if you are upgrading to the 2009r1 release, and are currently using SQL 2000 or earlier, certain pieces of functionality may not be available to you. As database engines continue to grow and evolve, new features and performance optimizations become available. The 2009r1 release of Advantage makes use of some of these new features that may not be available with a SQL 2000 database. In April 2008, Microsoft retired the mainstream support for SQL 2000 on many of its service pack levels. For more information on the Microsoft product life cycles, please see the Microsoft …



  • Process_Notification Capsule

    As of revision 2008R2, Advantage calls a process notification procedure at the end of every process request and can be set up to send a variety of notifications, as you choose. Process_Notification.cap should be put in your advantage\local\custom_cli folder and then modified based on the types of notification desired. When modifying the capsule, place the notification command before the RETURN TRUE line in the boolean Notify procedure. Remember, any capsules must be declared before using them. // Called when a process endsDEFINE BOOLEAN NOTIFY( // Status. FALSE on failureCHARACTER 8 REQ_NAME, // Request nameDATE START_DATE, // date when the process startedCHARACTER 8 START_TIME, // time when the process startedCHARACTER 1 TYPE, // Type of …



  • Bienvenue to Vidal

    ACS is happy to announce the addition of Vidal, our third client based in France. (Bayard Presse was the first, and Agora France became the second, going live in October 2008). Vidal became a client in mid-November and the implementation is well underway. Located in Issy-les-Moulineaux, just outside of Paris, Vidal publishes medical information to French healthcare professionals. They publish a well-known book which provides drug interaction information to medical professionals. They also publish a variety of other products including: subscription-based newsletters, electronic subscriptions, advertising and other one-off products. Vidal began searching for a new system early in 2008 and was interested in seeing Advantage because they knew that Bayard …



  • ACS Wants to Help You Meet Your 2009 Goals

    Let me start by wishing you a Happy New Year! 2008 was a tough year for many industries. Here in Michigan, countless businesses and households have been hit hard by woes of the big-three automakers, in addition to the general challenges of a struggling economy. While ACS is not unaffected by the economic conditions, the list of prospective clients interested in Advantage remains steady and we are doing okay. Among the Advantage community, I hear with some frequency of publishers and associations cutting back on staff, reducing issue frequencies, and merging titles. Unfortunately, many of our clients serve market segments that are significantly affected by the current recession. Nevertheless, we continue to see promising signs among our …



  • Cool, Creative Customer Notes Features

    You can now use the Customer Service Notes management feature to organize customer notes (SVCCON-M records) into a hierarchical/priority-based structure for more efficient addressing by your customer service personnel. In summary, the feature works as follows:  You work with notes that have been created by the system---through the Web, the SVC125 upload, etc. In other words, this feature does not create customer notes on its own, but rather offers the means to respond to them more efficiently. An SVC process (SVC125 or SVC305) is used to select the notes to be imported into the feature. Each select level used with SVC125 or SVC305 includes the path name (i.e. …



  • Exciting New Features in 2009R1!

    The first release of 2009 offers some exciting new features and will be available in early February. Here are some highlights: Conference and Event: You can now choose to defer income for conference registrations entered within the CEM module (previously, all income was earned up front when the registration was posted). This will allow you to accept registration orders, but not earn the associated income until the actual start of the conference. This behavior is variable at the individual conference/location level. Gift Subs: A new analysis table, CIRPMG-M, tracks promotion responses for subscriptions that have been specifically identified as "gifts." While one definition of a gift subscription is simply one where the bill- …



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