A Date Variable gathers a date value as an answer from a template user, for example date of birth.
To access the Date variable Editor, you can:
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Basic component actions appear in the component toolbar, above the component properties.
|Button||What it Does|
|Test||Displays the selected component in the HotDocs Test Browser.|
|Rename||Displays the Rename Component dialog that enables you to rename your component.|
|Duplicate||Displays the Duplicate Components dialog that enables you to create a copy of this component in the component file.|
|Tools||Shows or hides the Tools pane on the right.|
|Delete||Displays the Delete Component dialog that enables you to delete the component. You can also view a list of templates or components that currently reference the selected component and you may have to fix after deletion.|
At the top of the editor you can see the name that HotDocs uses to identify this date variable.
|Property Name||What it Does|
|Name||Enables you to view and edit the name of your variable. You
can easily this property if your no other components or templates
reference the variable; otherwise, this property becomes read-only.
It is not advisable to rename variables once another component or template references them, since this can cause major answer mismatches during document assembly.If read-only, you can rename your variable using the Rename button on the toolbar.
Component names must be unique within the template and component file.
The Display tab provides you with properties that enable you to change how a component's answer field appears during the interview:
|Property Name||What it Does|
|Prompt||Enables you to provide the interview question text to help a user answer a question during an interview.
If you do not provide any prompt text, then the Title property text will display as the interview question text. If there is no Title property text, the variable name will display as the interview question text.
|Width on regular dialogs||Provides you with options for setting the width of the date variable's answer text box when the date variable is displayed in an interview using a regular (non-repeated or series) dialog:
The selection you make for this property does not affect how many characters your template user can type into the answer text box, it only affects the width of the answer text box itself.
|Width on spreadsheet dialogs||Provides you with options for setting the width of the date variable's answer text box when the date variable is used in a spreadsheet dialog:
|Title||If a component appears in a default dialog, enables you to give your component a title that appears in the interview outline and in the dialog title bar. If the component appears in a custom dialog, the title only appears when you don't provide text in the Prompt property.|
The Behavior tab provides you with options that enable you to change how a component behaves during the interview and assembly:
|Property Name||What it Does|
|Ask automatically||Causes HotDocs to ask the variable in an interview as long
as the following conditions are also true:
If you previously linked the variable to a dialog, Ask automatically also causes HotDocs to ask that dialog within the interview.
When you clear this option, HotDocs prevents the variable question from appearing in an interview unless the variable is used in a dialog that is specifically asked.
|Warn when unanswered||Enables you to have HotDocs display a warning message if a
template user attempts to finish the interview without answering
one or more questions.
If you clear this option, the End of Interview dialog still reports the question as unanswered; however, HotDocs does not display a warning message.
|Save answer||Enables you to cause HotDocs to store the answer in the answer file. You can uncheck this box when you only need the answer to provide a value to a local variable and do not want HotDocs to store it for later reuse.|
|If answer is irrelevant||Enables you to specify whether HotDocs shows, hides, or disables
variables that a template user's choices cause to be irrelevant
within an interview.
|Default format||Enables you to set the format
for every placeholder field that references this component throughout
the template. Setting a format enables you to define the pattern
HotDocs uses to format answers
or other values in assembled
documents; for example, you can use the 'LIKE THIS' text format
to capitalize all letters in a name, the 'nine' number format
to spell out a numeral, or the pattern 'dd/mm/yyyy' to format
a date answer as text.
Setting a default format does not override any formats you have already (or will) set for an individual placeholder field using the HotDocs Field Editor.
|Default unanswered text||Enables you to specify what text you want HotDocs to place into the final document when a template user leaves the variable unanswered. This text overrides the Unanswered variable placeholder you can select in the Template Properties dialog box Assembly Behavior Tab.|
|Pad answer to fixed number of characters||Enables you to change how answers are displayed in the assembled
document by altering the padding of the answer according to the
characteristics you specify using the following properties:
The default fill character is a space.
To provide you a quick way to know if this tab contains any content, you can see a + symbol on the tab if there is a note.
As you create components, you may want to include notes to remind yourself of decisions you made when creating the component. For example, maybe you need to remember information about restrictions you applied to a Number variable, or remind yourself of the purpose of the component in the template.
The notes tab enables you to type any notes you want about the component and its role in the template.
This information is not visible in the interview; it is for the author’s reference only.
The Additional information expander, located at the bottom of the component editor, enables you to open the additional information pane so you can edit the additional information property:
|Additional information||Enables you to provide supplemental help text (or an external
URL) to help your template
users better understand how to answer a question in an interview. Template users access
this information by viewing the additional information pane in
You can use HTML and CSS in the text box to format the text that displays in the additional information pane in the interview. As such, if you want to preserve angle brackets in your text (for example, <Your Name>) you must use the codes < and > to insert the brackets (for example, <Your Name>).
To provide you a quick way to know if this pane contains any content, the content (if any) is summarized to the right of the pane's label.
On the right side of the component editor you can view a tools pane containing various (Components, Models, Used in, or Field Editor) tabs for this component.
You can use the Tools button on the Component toolbar to show or hide the tools pane.
When you select a component in the Components column of Component Studio, you can look in the Used In tab to see the list of other components or templates (if there are any) that use the component you select. Double-clicking an item in the Used In tab opens that item for editing and places focus on the first reference to the component you selected.
When you select a text-based component property that can contain fields, the Field Editor tab appears in the Tools panel. Any HotDocs fields you add to the text that appear in an interview. When a template user provides an answer for that placeholder field in the interview, the answer appears in the component's interview display text.
If you use a placeholder field in a component's interview display text, you must ensure the template user provides an answer for that placeholder before the interview displays the component containing the placeholder field.