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Seeking third-party application enhancement?

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The Question is:

Our docketing system, including reports, reside(s) on the Vax. Several of these
 reports require signatures. Is there a way we can have the signatures reside
 on the p.c. and have them called into the Vax cobol programs as necessary?
We would like to find a way to "auto-sign", if you will,  these reports. How
 would that be possible? Is it possible on our architecture?  If not, what
would we need to make it possible on our architecture?
Thank you,
Helen Mashburn

The Answer is :

Most any software problem is solvable, once the problem is understood in
sufficient detail and given access to the code -- the particular software
requirements here are not understood by the OpenVMS Wizard, and the
code appears to be a third-party "docket" application package.
OpenVMS and most other systems do not have a concept of a "signature
file", though there can quite easily be a file that contains a signature,
potentially either containing a cryptographic signature or possibly just
a simple digitally-encoded (digitized) scan or other similar graphic
representation.  Some systems might confusingly refer to these standard
files as a "signature file", of course.
COBOL can certainly include files and can certainly read and write files,
but COBOL itself does not inherently know what a file containing a
signature might be used for, nor how the file might be processed or
displayed.  Once this sort of detail is clear, a solution is rather
more likely feasible.
Please contact your "docket" software vendor for assistance with the
technical issue.
Please consult your presiding judge regarding whether the resulting
"signatures" would be legally binding.

answer written or last revised on ( 12-SEP-2000 )

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