Designer software offers a graphical design tool to create forms that combine high-fidelity presentation with XML data handling. Using Adobe Designer, form authors can quickly create secure, intelligent electronic forms that can be deployed as Adobe PDF or HTML documents.
Authors use an intuitive grid layout and drag-and-drop libraries to position graphics, enter text, and add form objects such as list boxes, drop-down lists, command buttons, and checkboxes. They can then render a single template into multiple formats to suit audience preference, type of data to be captured, or the platform being used.
Create forms that validate data, perform calculations, and automatically check for errors to increase accuracy.
Bind form fields to XML schemas, databases, or Web services for creation of more intelligent forms that integrate with core systems and reduce integration costs.
You can create both static and dynamic forms
I know you can upgrade Adobe LiveCycle ES4 to Experience Manager Forms but are the two tools completely different or can they be integrated in some way?
These are essentially the same product with Experience Manager Form being the latest version of the product that provides you with all native form design capabilities along with the latest one. Forms created in one can be imported/exported in the other easily. Writing JS in designer forms is very simple and along with that you have support for XFA based scripting; below is the reference guide for the same.
We have a team that creates PDFs using InDesign that we then import into our AEM DAM (That same PDF is also used for creating a paper version that can be mailed to consumers). That same PDF information is used to build a web experience for collecting the customer information (our content managers have to copy and past the content from the PDF, define the fields for collecting the user entered information, etc.) and define the payload for a backend service (we have to enter the field names in the backend service). It is a very inefficient and error prone process. What we'd like is to be able to define the PDF in a single place and have it leveraged by the web experience and back end service with as manual work as possible. It seems AEM Forms can help us here but our designers currently use InDesign. We're trying to figure out the best way to make this happen. HTH.
It still isn't clear to me the differences between AEM forms and InDesign. If I want to manage forms that will be leveraged by AEM built websites am I better off creating the forms in InDesign uploading them into AEM (via InDesign server?) and managing them from there or am I better off just leveraging AEM Forms Designed directly?