Open XML links for 04-30-2007

A few links to things I've come across in recent days ...

DOCX convertor for the Mac

Office for the Mac hasn't shipped with Open XML support yet (but it's coming soon). So if you're a Mac user in an organization that has moved to Office 2007 and the Open XML formats, you might want to check out Panergy's docxConvertor tool.

It's a stand-alone convertor that translates "docx" Open XML documents into RTF. Most commonly used formatting and features are translated, including styles, headers/footers, comments, theme settings, and more. See the features list for more info.

Office Documents book

I started reading Stephanie Krieger's excellent book "Advanced Microsoft Office Documents 2007 Edition Inside Out" last week. It's a comprehensive user-oriented view of how to create documents in Microsoft Office, but it's also very useful for developers who need to learn about some of the types of things you can do in Open XML.

For example, I've seen things in the spec about the glossary concept, but I've never really worked with that type of functionality. After reading Stephanie's clear and thorough explanation, I have a clearer sense of what the glossary offers and how I might use it in a programmatically generated document.

The book also covers some of the architectural details of the Open XML formats, and the author has recorded a webcast available that goes over many of those concepts as well: "Advanced Tips & Tricks: Breaking Into Your Office Open XML Format Documents (Level 300)." If you're interested in storing custom ribbon UI extensions in documents (which aren't Open XML schemas, but rather an example of the Open Packaging Convention's flexibility), be sure to check out Stephanie's upcoming webcast next Tuesday on customizing the ribbon using Office Open XML.

Open XML on Palm handheld devices

Users of Palm handheld devices can now read and write Open XML documents (DOCX and XLSX formats) with the latest version of Dataviz's Documents To Go. Open XML support is now included in all versions, and the Premium Edition also supports password protected files, charting, pictures, and spell checking for word processing files.

Belgium Open XML workshop

A free 2-day Open XML developer workshop will be held in Belgium on May 22-23.

I believe this one will be delivered by my colleague Wouter Van Vugt, who is doing a workshop in Reading this week. I got an email from him late last night about the strangely familiar sound of birds chirping in the UK countryside. Dude, you need to get out more! (But not until all these workshops are done, of course. :-))

Microsoft 3rd-quarter financials

It's been interesting to see posts on a few anti-Open XML blogs lately about the (alleged) "desperation" of Microsoft in the face of (allegedly) dwindling market share. Those comments seemed downright amusing after Microsoft's financial results were announced last week: revenue is up, income is up, and earnings are up.

Desperate times indeed. Here's an amusing look at the latest numbers.

On the road again

I'm leaving tomorrow morning for another long road trip, so delays on email and blog comments will be the norm for a while. This time I'm headed south, for Open XML workshops in Brazil, Chile, Colombia, and Mexico. Photos to follow ...