I have developed a system that calculates tax required to be withheld for casual workers. In order to determine the amount, we use the Tax table for daily and casual workers. The avid reader may see that the only format available is PDF and also provided is a calculator that has been locked down to the nth degree.
There is no CSV, there is no JSON, hell even XML would be preferable to a PDF.
“Not to worry, I’ll open the calculator and find a nice table of daily earnings and amount to withhold”. Nope. We have a single sheet locked and some very complex lookup tables that would take a day to decipher.
With a deep sigh, I think to myself “Strange… But understanble. What if we copy the PDF into Excel and use Paste Special, surely that would take care of it”. Nope. The way the PDF is formatted means that the data gets crammed into a single cell.
The data cannot even be pasted into a text editor and turned into a CSV using regex find and replace. In the end I had to use a program like pdftotext and copy and paste from there.
How can we improve this?