FAQ (Frequently Asked
This page contains answers to common
questions handled by our support staff, along with some tips and tricks that we have found
useful and presented here as questions.
Note: In these answers, we will follow
a few shorthand conventions for describing user-interface procedures. Key
combinations will be presented like this: Ctrl+Alt+Delete, which means that you should
press and hold down the Control key, the Alt key, and the Delete key at the same
time. Menu selections will be presented like this: File,Open, which means that you
should open the File menu, and then make the Open selection.
is an productivity suite of products that can be implemented by almost any
office. It starts with implementation of the proprietary Pronexus<tm>
database engine. Pronexus<tm> manages the data, while the productivity
suite supplies a user-friendly suite of office applications. For example, you can do
- With QuickFinder and QuickEntry, track data using the
Pronexus<tm> database system by connecting people, companies, locations and
telecommunication addresses in any manner without limitation! Easily
move between the web of data object connections!
- Enter data once, use it many; e.g., enter a corporation
once, enter each person once, then connect the people to the company with a relationship
called "employee" then if you lookup the person, you see all affiliated
companies, if you lookup the company, you see all employees! Edit one record and all
affiliations are updated; 100 persons living at a location, change the address and
everyone's updated. Lookup a telephone number and see all persons, companies and
locations related to it! Very cool, very powerful.
- Easily take and enter "telephone" messages
using e-mail with the E-MSG! Pad, with any new information AUTOMATICALLY updating the core
- Each telephone message taken by anyone stored in common
lookup database in the Lookup database
- Deposit messages in a common database to give to callers
in the Waiting Messages Pad
- Track staff using the InOut Pad, automatically notify
the receptionist when a person changes their in/out status if the person is in the
- When taking a message in the E-MSG! Pad, automatically
notify the receptionist if the caller is an "exception" such that the person
called wants to be interrupted even though not otherwise available, or let the caller know
that one or many persons have deposited a message; ala the E-MSG! Pad, the InOut Pad and
the Waiting Messages Pad are integrated!
Client Management Module
- Track your clients information, including details such
as rank, etc.
- Track all files and documents in your office, using a
File/Subfile/Documents paradigm; when you take a file from, or give a file to, someone,
you can log it out of the database and have an automated e-mail send a notice to the
- Track each item of mail in your office, the cost, etc.
Office Management Module
- Create and track Standard Operating Procedure to get
your company systemized
- Track library books, library cards, etc.
- Manage shared resources with the Resource Logger so that
multiple persons can "log out" a shared resource
MindSaver Docketing Module
- Create a to-do item, with one or more associated
- Each to-do has its own properties, as does each date
- At user-defined intervals, the server software will
interrogate the database and look for upcoming deadlines (based upon the date entry
information) and AUTOMATICALLY send e-mail to the responsible parties that the deadline is
approaching--you can even flag MindSaver to automatically send your
clients/customers/patients e-mail with an upcoming appointment, etc.
That is one of the toughest questions we
encounter. Apparently, the reviewer
at TUDOGS also had this trouble as part of their 5-star review; but, they got
it right: given the available categories, we don't know how to categorize it
It does wrench us a bit when we see Ziata!
called a PIM, but that's okay, we understand and are sensitive to their plight
of trying to categorize a product that can equally fit into many
It really begins with a definition of
terms. Ziata! is a data manager. A very powerful data
manager. It manages the relationships between or among entities better
than anything on the market. It also has the best integrated workflow
modules on the market.
Because PIMs use old technology and do not
manage relationships between or among entities very well, and because PIMs do
not have business workflow modules, and because PIMs do not integrate email as
a message base for data information, we do not consider Ziata! to be a PIM in
the traditional sense. Ziata! is really a business tool that you can use
personally on a very basic level. PIMs are often personal tools that
people try to use in their business. Ziata! is intended for use on a
business network, the more the better, and the workflow modules, like E-MSG!
and In/Out, are core business tools.
But here is the rub: Ziata! encompasses
Data Tracking, Phone Message Pad, E-mail Integration, Staff In/out Tracking,
Client Tracking, Labels, Electronic Mass Mailings, E-Mail Notifications of
Deadlines, etc., etc., and Internet sites just can't figure out which section
to put Ziata! into.
Ziata! could equally be put in the
Business, Email Tools, Data and Information Management, Project Management,
Mass Emailing, Mailing List Programs, etc. So, sometimes, Ziata! will
just end up in the PIM section. The easiest way to find Ziata! on a
site, is to search for it.
As a final note, Ziata! does not in any way
compete with Outlook, which is truly a PIM. See Does Ziata! compete with
Absolutely not! In fact, Ziata! uses
Outlook very effectively. When we developed Ziata!, we knew one thing:
we could not control e-mail protocol over Microsoft. Microsoft would be
updating and changing the way email worked. We wanted Ziata! to keep
working for you, even if Microsoft changed their basic email system.
Therefore, we made the decision to use the Microsoft-compliant MAPI
Ziata! uses your email package to do it's
dirty work of informing you of crucial information in your database: that is, it hands the message to your email package, and your
email package sends the message like any other email. You then get the
benefit of having messages stored in your SENT MAIL folder, etc. Plus,
if you use or upgrade to WordMail, great, Ziata! really doesn't care. If
Ziata! hands the message to Inbox, Exchange, Exchange Server, Outlook, etc.,
it really doesn't matter.
A very nice feature of Outlook and some
other packages is the ability to color code email and show a few lines of text
without opening the message. You can setup Outlook to display deadline
notices, E-MSG! message, etc., with color coding, and it really can save you
Overall, the problem with Outlook and PIMs
is that they are basically "flat-file" non-relational
databases. That is, you are always limited to a certain number of home
addresses, telephones, email addresses, etc., and you can't create the
unlimited relationships. This is unrealistic! Ziata! can save and
retrieve vCards for contact information interoperability with Outlook, but we
suggest that you don't use Outlook for your contact management: it's just too
weak. Use Ziata! to manage the contact data aspect and Outlook to manage
the mail aspect. Just setup Ziata! to recognize Outlook (or Outlook
Express) as your default email package, and just by clicking the Mail Icon in
QuickFinder, you will be presented with an Outlook New Mail screen with the
recipient's default email address already entered. You get the best of
We kept the same concept of using the power
of other core package with label generating. The market share for
Microsoft Word is huge. Forcing you to learn how to print labels in
Ziata!, with page definitions, etc. is just too much to ask. In the old
days, circa 1994, you needed to learn every different package's nuances of
printing data. Ziata! will create labels ready for you to paste into
your preferred word processor, which is usually Word (but could be
WordPerfect, etc.). You can then fully manipulate the text, page sizes,
etc., with no additional learning curve. Ziata! gives just enough
options to make that process a breeze, like number of blank lines between
labels, etc. Our research clearly shows that users don't want to learn
more than one package to do the same task. And, our research also shows
that the average person does not know how to perform a true data form mail
merge. But, a simple right-click cut/paste is perfect!
By the way, in Ziata! the simple address
block task is nothing more than, in QuickFinder, putting the cursor on the
person and Ctrl-C, and pasting (Ctrl-V) into your word processor. For
example, assuming that you've entered the core data and created the
relationships, you'll have a nice:
Gregg R. Zegarelli
Ziata! Solutions, LLC.
Allegheny Building, 12th Floor
Pittsburgh, PA 15219-1616 USA
It's that easy. That's all there is
to creating an address block in your letters, it's always up-to-date and
accurate. See the sampleDB
document for more examples (it is online and in your local c:\program files\ziata
folder after installation).
A core Microsoft platform might look like
the following. (Certainly, other platforms are also excellent, but the
following is listed to provide an idea of a usual office setup):
Microsoft NT (any version), possibly with
Exchange Server (not required), or Windows (any version), whether or not
dedicated to serving the network.
Microsoft Windows (any version) or NT
Microsoft Word for word processing
Microsoft Excel for spreadsheets
Microsoft Outlook for email
Ziata! for information management and workflow
Accounting and Time and Billing package
Ziata! is fully 32 bit compliant, so it only runs in Microsoft
95/98/2000/NT. To take advantage
of the powerful messaging, Ziata!
runs with Microsoft Inbox, Exchange, Outlook or any MAPI compliant messaging system. If it's
important to receive message, but not take them, then Ziata! only requires that the recipient have the ability to receive
MAPI e-mail, e.g. Windows 3.11, etc. We recommend at least a 486/33 with 8 megabytes
of RAM, but, really, because of the database accessing, you should have a Pentium 100 with
at least 16 megabytes of RAM. It is also important to have adequate extra hard disk
space to allow for memory caching.
The answer is yes,
functionally. That is, Ziata!
is completely compatible with Inbox, Exchange, Exchange Server and
Outlook. In fact, it requires a standard MAPI-compliant email transport to
send its mail. When you click the mail icon it launches your standard
email form. Mail sent via Ziata!
is stored in your SENT MAIL mail program folder (just like any other mail), and
can be forwarded, etc., just like any other mail.
also can import and export vCards for Outlook. Regarding contact lists,
however, remember that Ziata!
is far more powerful than other contact managers, because of the strong, broad,
relational nature of the data. For example, Ziata!
is not limited to one home address (there could be 2,000 or 2,000,000 or more)
and it is not limited to two or three telephones at that address (there could be
2,000 or 2,000,000 or more). Therefore, we recommend you use the
programs where they are strong: use Ziata!
for contact data management and your core workflow information, and Exchange
and/or Outlook for the email and simple calendaring.
purposely not client-server software. This allows it to be compatible
with the smallest and largest network installations. You do not need to
purchase Exchange Server, SQL Server or similar other, very expensive,
products. Ziata! will operate as wonderfully on a simple standard
Windows network system as it will on a full blown multinational corporation
network system. Although Ziata! does not require Exchange Server, if you
have it, Ziata! will work great with it.
Old technology usually has one record per person, with
a few user-definable fields for home, work, fax numbers. You know, space
for a Name, Home Address, Home Phone, Work Address, Work Phone, Email.
Problem is: your limited by the database paradigm.
PRONEXUS changes it
all. Now, you look at data as Persons, Companies, Locations and Telecommunication
addresses as objects. Each object has its own properties and is independent.
Then, once an object is created, it can be reused multiple times. For example, 5
persons are employees of a company, three of those five are also employed by another
company. A husband, wife and child live at an address, which is also the company
office. Usually such situations create a nightmare of data redundancy, each of which
piece of redundant data must be re-entered and RE-EDITED if there are changes. Using
the proprietary Pronexus<tm> database engine, you enter each piece of information
only one, then reuse it many times.
Most database packages become
uncontrollable after a large volume of data is entered. Ziata! actually
gets easier to use, because, as time goes on, more data objects are already in
Keep in mind, also, that Ziata! uses
SOUNDEX technology to ensure that similarly sounding data entries are flagged
for you. That is, if you have John Doe entered and you try to enter Jon
Doe, Ziata! will prompt you to confirm. This keeps your data clean
You have got to see it work--it's
revolutionary, not just evolutionary.
That and so much more. Because of the
Pronexus database engine, Ziata! has full control over every separate data
object. You want to do envelopes? Sure, just pick your
format. Ziata! will create a list of labels which can then be pasted
into your word processor. Because of Ziata!'s power, this is simply done
by creating a Physical Publication (Alt-File-Office Management-Mass Mailings),
then adding your subscribers (your list). With a mouse click, pick your
format: do you like "Ted and Alice", "Mr. and Mrs. Ted and
Alice Smith"? Do you want middle initials and Jr./Sr.? Just a
click. If two people live at the same address, do you want the envelope
consolidated? Easy... Ziata! will also count the number of persons
and invitations for you.
If you want to send to your client list,
just create a publication and click the "Send to Clients"
checkbox. Whenever you generate a mailing, it will be sent to all of
Another powerful feature, is that you can
create a subscription (mailing list entry), using various addresses: home
only, work only, try home first then work, try work first then home.
That is, if the subscriber does not have a home address, then use their work
address. Can your database do that?
You can also do unlimited mass electronic
mailings with a simple text file. There is just nothing like Ziata!
That depends upon which modules you want and how many
users you have. The software is very powerful, but we completely understand that a
small business needs access to the best software to be competitive. Therefore,
we tried to price the software in a manner that made it affordable for a small
business. As a result, call for pricing at 412-765-0490. There is also a price sheet in the program folder
Ziata! 5.1 is a completely
"freeware" version. It is operational for 100 users, has full
existing functionality and will not expire. This is a great way to get
If you need support, training,
customization or other services, you can still register Ziata! 5.1, but
registration is not required; that is, for example, it will NOT expire in 30
days. So, please use it and get comfortable with the new paradigm of
After you get used to Ziata!, you will
never want to go back to any other way to manage your data.
Download the software. Go to the File,
Configuration, Passwords menu item. Call us. Give use your Licensee Code,
tell us what modules you want and how many licenses, and we give you back a code which
will automatically upgrade you! See the User Documentation for more details.
See the User Manual or contact
us for details.
Ziata! has a powerful data engine. If
you are a software developer, you can "tap into" this power for your
us for details.
Ziata Solutions, LLC
Allegheny building, 12th Floor, Pittsburgh, PA 15219-1616
Pittsburgh, PA 15219-1616
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Copyright © 1998-2005
Ziata Solutions, LLC All rights
Revised: February 20, 2005.