Canadian Update News

February 2003

COMPULIFE Software Inc.

The March 2003 disk update will be processed Tuesday, February 25th and Wednesday, February 26th. Disks will be shipped Wednesday, February 26th. You should have the February Update in your office by Friday, February 28th.

The March 2003 Internet monthly update will be posted to our five monthly update websites on Wednesday, February 26th.

Unless you have made arrangements to purchase your diskettes, please return your January disks ONLY AFTER you have successfully installed this February 2003 Update. January disks are your backup in case you should have problems installing the February edition.

Windows Version Now Creates PDF Files

This newest version of our windows software permits you to create PDF files.

PDF Files

Last summer Compulife made inquiries into adding a PDF file generator to our software. Our initial contacts with Adobe, maker of the popular and widely used "Acrobat Reader", left us with the impression that the ability to create PDF files was the exclusive domain of Adobe and required the Acrobat software (not the free Acrobat reader). Having asked about bundling the Acrobat program into our software we learned that the total cost would be over $150 per subscriber.

We shelved that idea and believed that the best solution for customers who wanted that capability was to go ahead and purchase the Adobe product themselves.

That solution remains good advice for many simply because the Adobe program sits on your computer as a "virtual printer". This means that ANYTHING you normally print can be re-directed to an Adobe PDF file and then e-mailed to anyone that you want. That is a particularly elegant solution that makes the process of creating Adobe files consistent with ALL programs that you use, not just Compulife.

A Less Expensive Solution

It came to our attention that there were third party software products which could be integrated into our program and which will allow you to generate PDF files from within Compulife. The cost of doing so is flat meaning that we have been able to accomplish this at no additional cost to our customers.

We have selected a third party product which we think does a good job and the work on integrating this PDF software into Compulife is now complete. Not only can you create PDF files which can be attached to an e-mail, you can also automatically invoke your e-mail system from within Compulife. This second option will create the new e-mail with the PDF file already attached. All you add is the client's e-mail address and click the send button.

Both of our new PDF options are found under "File" located at the top of your window. These follow the "Print" and "Print Preview" options that you already use.

The first option is "Create PDF file" which opens the "Save As" window. This allows you to name and save the PDF file into any folder that you want.

The second option is "Create and Email PDF file as an attachment". As noted, this will automatically invoke your e-mail editor, automatically attaching the PDF file as "insurance.pdf".

Setting Up an E-Mail Template

The content of your e-mail is taken from a template which you can edit. To edit the template you will need to go to the red Master Menu which is the first menu that appears when you start the Compulife program. Under "Options" at the top of the Master Menu, about half way down, it now says "PDF File Options". When you select that option, the "PDF Options Form" is displayed and a "mock up" of your e-mail contains the text that will automatically be inserted into your e-mail.

This template allows the use of variables. These are:

{Client1}
The name that you entered into the Client Name field on the Enter Client Information screen.

{Agent}
The name that you entered into the Agent Name field on the Enter Client Information screen. (NOTE: The agent name is locked into the software for personal users, it can only be edited for agency users)

{Agency}
The name of licensee that is locked into the software.

Another PDF option, if checked, will automatically open and allow you to view your PDF file immediately after it has been created. This option lets you double check what you have saved into the PDF file, or what you are getting ready to send by e-mail, is in fact the printout that you want.

As always, please advise us of any problems you may encounter using the new features. Given the significant amount of software code that has been added, much of which was written by third party programmers, we cannot be certain how it will work in ALL computer systems. Those who obtained the midmonth update have been using the program without reported problem, and so we are pretty confident that all known bugs have been addressed.

Turning It Off

After we released the new PDF function in our January mid-month update, one of our subscribers called to say that his staff was getting confused between the PDF file creation option in Compulife, and the function of using the Adobe Acrobat which they already had and were working with. He asked if there was a way to turn off the option and so we decided to make the PDF an option that you can globally turn off or on.

If you don't want our PDF file options being displayed, go to the top of the Red Master Menu and click on "Options". Then click on "PDF File Options". There you can activate either or both the PDF file creation, or the e-mail with PDF attached.

No PDF in Term4Sale Agent Edition

Those using the "Term4Sale - Agent Edition" of the Compulife program, which is the low cost version of our windows software, do not have the PDF option available. If you want that PDF option, together with many of the other options offered by Compulife in our full system, you will need to upgrade your Term4Sale - Agent edition to the full Compulife Quotation System. This can be done by paying the pro-rated difference in subscription fees.

Alternately, those using the Term4Sale - Agent Edition can create PDF files by purchasing Adobe's Acrobat program. That is the version of Adobe which you must purchase (not the free Acrobat reader). As we mentioned earlier, the purchased version of Adobe Acrobat allows the creation of PDF files from ANY software product, not just Compulife. The Adobe software is excellent and we recommend it.

Better But Bigger

Including the new PDF file options resulted in the Compulife Windows program growing by about 275,000 bytes. It is a testament to our programming staff that they put so much into our software, and take so little space doing it. Adding that one new function, written by another supplier, caused our program to grow almost 15% in size. Let me say it again, this underlines that our programmers are talented guys.

In its compressed form the new GOWIN.EXE takes up about another 100,000 bytes of disk space. Because of the pressure that this is putting on floppy disk storage, we have decided that we will begin to use a new and different file compression system that permits us to more efficiently compress an EXE file. This cuts the Compulife compressed file by about 250,000 which means that the disk storage requirement has actually been improved. The down side is that the initial start-up of the Compulife program is a bit slower. Because of that performance concern we have decided that we will be distributing the compressed version of the GOWIN.EXE file in all disk released versions of our software. The uncompressed version of the program will be sent in all internet released versions of our software.

Once again, because the uncompressed version of GOWIN.EXE is a faster loading program, this is just one more reason to consider switching from obtaining disk updates to getting your Compulife monthly updates by Internet.

Health Analyzer Progress - Life Companies Contacted

During the second week of December the following e-mail was sent to each life company that Compulife has received assistance from during the past two years:

Health Analyzer - Two Stage Implementation

A number of life companies quickly responded with their health category underwriting criteria. We would like to thank those companies for their assistance. We believe that others will follow.

Having had an opportunity to review over a dozen examples, we have decided to break the Health Analyzer development into two stages. The first stage will analyze the following areas:

Smoking/Tobacco Use
Height/Weight Tables
Blood Pressure
Cholesterol

The second stage of the development will add the following areas:

Driving History
Family History
Hazardous Sports and Occupations (including pilot)

This will allow us to introduce the feature much more quickly. The reason is that the first four areas of analysis are handled much more consistently by life companies. I am referring to the way that companies table and define that information. Building a data storage model for the first four areas is a relatively simple task and we can complete it quickly.

By contrast the information related to the second group is handled less consistently. Some companies have complex information and criteria while others have simple information and criteria. In each case the challenge is to come up with a comprehensive questionnaire and database to encompass all possibilities. With respect to the second group of categories, we will need a much larger sample of different companies' data before we finalize the design. That means we will need time for more companies to become involved which adds a natural delay to the process. By leaving this to the second stage, it allow us to get you the first stage more quickly.

Coming Improvements to Multi-Life Options

We have almost completed work on strengthening our Multi-Life option. We expect to release it during the February mid-month update.

Many will recall that it was not long ago that we introduced the product family improvement to our Windows program. Product family means that all premium categories can be accessed from a single product display window. To view the other categories you can double-click on a product line within a comparison which will display a single product window. Next you click on the "Rate Category" button found in the top right hand corner of the single product window. All categories and premium are displayed for that product and clicking on any of the choices will redisplay the single product window with that category and its premiums.

The DOS program functions the way it always has. The preferred plus premiums are stored in a separate product entry from the preferred premiums. Because of this the DOS "rate category" option can only access premiums within a specific product entry and this is a key shortcoming of the DOS version of the software.

The fact that we use multiple product entries to include all product categories also created a limitation when doing multi-life quotes. If you attempted to combine a preferred plus non-smoking male with a standard smoking female, the DOS program could not mix the two because the best rates for the two individuals were in two different product entries. Instead of getting a preferred plus rate for the male, the best that the program could quote was a preferred rate.

This limitation has been removed from the next Windows version. That version will allow you to run a comparison which will then "cherry pick" the best possible rate for each person and their category. Then, when the combined results are displayed in the comparison, you will be able to further fine-tune categories by double-clicking on a product line. This will display that product in the single product window and show you the total premium or premiums for each individual. With the premiums for one individual , you will be able to use the "Rate Category" button to fine-tune the premium category for that person. Once that is re-selected, a new total premium schedule will be displayed in the single product window. You can then print the multi- life quotation for that product and you will get the exact premiums, for each life, that you want.

Pick 12 Multi-Life - Next on the List

Currently Pick 12 contains the premiums for only one person. When the next development step is completed Pick 12 will have the ability to display the total premiums for two people (eventually 5). You will also be able to view and print the individual premiums for each of the two people.

These features will appear in the Windows version of the program. We have no intention of implementing this feature into the DOS program.

Special Offer to Agencies

We are repeating our reference to this special offer for agencies because no one has taken us up on it. Here it is again. If you are an agency that wants term quotes for your website, you need to read this carefully as it is an attractive offer for someone that wants to do a little leg work for us.

Compulife has introduced a new Internet-based quotation system for agents. The system is currently marketed through two of our authorized Internet providers. For full details about the service and fees, please visit the www.compulife.com website. Details are in the September 2002 monthly bulletin.

One of the things that we have been hearing from agencies, who want to provide quotation and comparison services on-line, is that they would also like to have a library of life company applications and forms. One of Compulife's authorized web providers, "Insurance Squared", is anxious to provide that "forms" service. Unfortunately initial requests to life companies have met with less than an enthusiastic response. That's where this special offer can help you if you can help Insurance Squared.

We believe that MGA's have more power of persuasion when it comes to this issue. Therefore, if your agency is the first to assist Insurance Squared in obtaining the applications and forms for 6 life companies, your agency will receive a free year of the new Internet comparison service for your agents.

A second agency can also qualify for a free year of service. If the second agency can provide forms for an additional 6 life companies, that agency will also receive a free year of the new Internet comparison service for agents. (NOTE: If the first agency is first to provide 12, it will receive a 2 year free subscription to the on-line system).

A third free year of service will also be awarded to the third agency which can add 6 more unique companies to the forms library. (NOTE: If the first agency is first to provide 18, it will receive a three year free subscription to the on-line agent system. If the second agency is first to provide 12, it will receive a two year free subscription to the on-line agent system).

To qualify Insurance Squared needs more than just the .PDF forms. Insurance Squared needs the forms provided by the Home Office with the understanding that the Home Office will keep Insurance Squared updated with new forms when they change. Alternately, the Home Office can provide Insurance Squared with access to the life companies forms library with the understanding that the forms can be downloaded and saved to the Insurance Squared website.

While this may entail some effort by the Home Office, we believe that the benefits are clear for the life company, the agency and the agent. We believe it will take a pro-active MGA to get that message across.

If you would like to see Compulife's new on-line quotation system for agents, give Bob Barney a call at (800) 798-3488. If you would like to discuss providing forms and qualifying, please call Glenn Cooke at Insurance Squared, (866) 662-5433.

Dueling Websites

For those who update by Internet, Compulife has gone to great lengths to provide you with redundancy in our websites. Our main website is:

www.compulife.com

However, we keep another completely separate website, on a completely different server, in a completely different country, at:

www.compulife.cc

Whatever we update to compulife.com, we also update to compulife.cc. If one website goes down, for whatever reason, the other is ready to serve you. That includes both monthly and mid-month updates.

For those doing monthly updates by Internet, we rely on three other websites to supply monthly updates. These are automatically checked and used by our automatic Internet update software.

Returning Monthly Disk Updates

For those not wanting to return disks there are two ways to eliminate the problem.

1. Switch to obtaining monthly updates by Internet.

Not only will you eliminate the expense and hassle of returning disks, you will save $80 per year in subscription fees.

To switch to Internet monthly updates, go to our webpage www.compulife.com and select the last menu choice "Forms, applications, instruction tutorials, etc." Under the section "License Agreements", the third license is the "Internet Update Endorsement". Print the endorsement. Once you have it, please read it carefully, especially the part where you agree that you have successfully downloaded and processed our "mid-month updates". If you haven't done that before, call us and we'll be happy to take you through the procedure. It's easy.

2. Disk Purchase Program

The other way to avoid returning the disks and the disk box each month is to pre-purchase them for $21 per year ($1.75 per month). Once you do that you can keep them for future reference, throw them away or return them for a credit (once each year) when you are invoiced for the following year. $21 costs you less than mailing back disks each month.