Microsoft Office Online

Please note: Portions of this transcript have been edited for clarity

Hosts:

  • Darrin Hatakeda, Program Manager in Office Online
  • Rob Ashby, User Assistance Manager for Office
  • Lawrence Tanimoto, Program Manager with Office Online
  • Eric Lawrence, Program Manager with Office Online
  • Nick Simons, Program Manager with Office Online
  • Vlada Breiburg, Program Manager with Office Online
  • Gary Ritchie, Development Manager with Office Online
  • Kent, Office Design Group
  • Jamie Sloan, PSS Community Program Manager for Office

 

Moderator: Jamie (Microsoft)
Good day, today's chat, 'Microsoft Office Online' will begin shortly. Thank you for your patience. Please hold your questions until the chat begins.

Host: Matt (Microsoft)
Bio: I'm a program manager for Office Online including "client" (see above) integration features.

Moderator: Jamie (Microsoft)
Good day. Welcome to today's chat 'Microsoft Office Online.' Before we begin, let's meet our hosts for today's chat.

Host: Darrin (Microsoft)
DarrinH: I am a program manager in Office Online.

Host: Rob (Microsoft)
Bio: User Assistance Manager for Office working on search indexing here with David Shank, Documentation Manager for Office applications

Host: Lawrence (Microsoft)
I am Lawrence a Program Manager with Office Online responsible for Search and backend infrastructure. I'm here with Andrew Kwatinetz, Group Program Manager for Office Online, including the integration into the Office products.

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
BIO: Hi, I'm Eric Lawrence. I'm a Program Manager who works on some of the task panes which connect to Office Online.

Host: Nick (Microsoft)
Bio: I'm a Program Manager working on Office Online and Office client features.

Host: Vlada (Microsoft)
BIO: Hello, I am VladaB_MS. I work on the Training portion of the website.

Host: Gary (Microsoft)
BIO: I'm the development manager for Office Online website and client/website integration.

Moderator: Jamie (Microsoft)
Now, let's get on with the show.

Host: Kent (Microsoft)
i am kent and work in the Office Design Group, and work with the team that works on Office Online

Host: Nick (Microsoft)
Q:
Will "Help" reside on-line instead of within the application now? How often will updates be made?

**A:**Help is online now. We are updating content daily based on customer feedback and usage statistics. We are still a large amount of help in the box.

Moderator: Jamie (Microsoft)
Please be aware, this chat is designed to cover the improved Microsoft Office Online <http://officebeta.microsoft.com/home/default.aspx > Web site that is the first line of support for Office System users.

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
Q:
Were any features removed from the boxed software--and put Online instead?

**A:**There were a few little used utilities which are now available as downloads, but otherwise we haven't removed features from the box.

Host: Matt (Microsoft)
Q:
How will users take advantage of the Online help if they are on a Dial up connection and there time online is limited to speed and time?

**A:**Office 2003 doesn't automatically dial or hang-up your Internet connect. This means you are always in control. A good strategy would be to try searching for help offline first. If this answers your question great.

Host: Matt (Microsoft)
A: Otherwise, dial-up and try searching online. When you do search online there's very little data moving back and forth (equivalent to browsing a regular web page).

Host: Nick (Microsoft)
Q:
Will there be More Content added based on The surveys on Microsoft Office Online or by watching the most searched for items?

**A:**Yes. Both.

Host: Rob (Microsoft)
Q:
I'm finding that I'm not finding answers because many of my issues are not indexed (and we have no proper index). How will that be addressed?

**A:**We monitor frequently asked questions and include answers to them in Office Online on a continuous basis.

Host: Vlada (Microsoft)
Q:
How soon will the site be fully functional?

**A:**The site is fully functional now.

Host: Vlada (Microsoft)
Q:
The training modules are very helpful. Will customers who do not have broadband access be able to order them on CD or something?

**A:**We currently don't have plans to deliver training on CDs. However, we are thinking about it based on customer feedback.

Host: Lawrence (Microsoft)
Q:
BrianLema338089: Will the supplementary templates, etc that are from the Language packs be available for download from the Office online www site?

**A:**We will provide a wide range of templates for all languages on our web site that will be available t

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
Q:
What is refresh going to be called officially? Beta 3?

**A:**At present, it's called the Beta 2 Technical Refresh

Host: Darrin (Microsoft)
Q:
When will Market Place be working for UK versions?

**A:**We will provide a wide range of templates for all languages on our web site that will be available to all users. Putting the client templates for all languages on the web sites sounds like an excellent and doable idea. There will be a "lite" version of the Marketplace available when we RTW for Office 2003

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
Q:
What is the current timetable for delivery of the refresh?

**A:**At present, we're still working on it, but thus far, we're only sure that it won't be for a few weeks.

Host: Gary (Microsoft)
Q:
Jimmy : there are errors on the site

**A:**Can you provide some examples?

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
Q:
I have noticed when I have installed the language packs, some new 'Office assistants' are installed (Office lady, Monkey King, etc) will those be available for download from the Office Online www site?

**A:**At present, there are no such plans. sorry.

Host: Nick (Microsoft)
Q:
Is the Office visual style and GUI frozen at this point?

**A:**Yes.

Moderator: Jamie (Microsoft)
Q:
What is "Office Online", please.

A:http://officebeta.microsoft.com/home/default.aspx

Host: Vlada (Microsoft)
Q:
We really should try to get every new user to go through the intro modules. If they are on dial-up though, they give up.

**A:**Hopefully, all users (not just new users) will benefit from Training. We are definitely concerned about the dial-up experience and continue to do testing on 28k dial up.

Host: Darrin (Microsoft)
Q:
Update to posting: " "lite" " what? Can’t there be a decent amount of partners in the UK!?

**A:**We are continually evaluating markets based on how many partners and users exits in that area.

Host: Gary (Microsoft)
Q:
Sent several examples of broken pages on the Marketplace site in a private chat

**A:**Cool, looks like you found some bugs. We'll investigate those right away. Thx.

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
Q:
(Repeating the question that wasn't answered before), I'm concerned about adding an Arabic Language support to the (Translation) feature, is there any chance?

**A:**I don't know that Microsoft will be providing this translation language (it's owned by a different team than the Office Online team). However, the interface is fully extensible, and it's entirely possible for a third party to write one.

Host: Nick (Microsoft)
Q:
Is Microsoft planning on replacing Access VBA with VB.NET?

**A:**Not in this version of Office. But you can use .NET with Access.

Host: Lawrence (Microsoft)
Q:
Decent templates

**A:**Do you think the current ones aren't decent? If so, can you clarify what you'd like to see?

Host: Nick (Microsoft)
Q:
Is Office Online supported in every language that Office 2003 supports?

**A:**Yes

Host: Matt (Microsoft)
Q:
Will there be a PPT Viewer 2003 available to download as a separate program to run as PPT Viewer 97 does. Rather than just embedded with pack and go?

**A:**The viewer is included in the product (as you know), we're not sure if it'll be available for download but likely so. (The downloads expert isn't here at the chat.)

Host: Darrin (Microsoft)
Q:
In Marketplace, could there not be reviews on third party add-ons? I find it difficult to locate such programs

**A:**We are continually looking for people to add to the marketplace. Please email omp1033@microsoft.com <mailto:omp1033@microsoft.com\> with your leads

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
Q:
When searching for updates on the Beta Office Update, there is a note to delete a folder and file related to the update BEFORE running the nonbeta office update. How will this evolve?

**A:**This problem will go away.

Host: Vlada (Microsoft)
Q:
If your site is down, how is a user going to be able to find the answers to there questions?

**A:**We are committed to 24/7 support. However, if for some reason users can't connect to the web we switch to offline mode

Host: Lawrence (Microsoft)
Q:
*buts in* i would like to see more UK oriented template design

**A:**We will be providing many templates specifically for UK users. Let us know if you have specific ideas

Host: Vlada (Microsoft)
clarification to 'offline mode'--we still plan to ship help on CDs. These should always be available.

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
Q:
The resource task pane is great - will it be expanded with more online content?

**A:**I assume you're asking about the research pane? Yes, third parties can plug in to this pane and offer content.

Host: Darrin (Microsoft)
Q:
Will the office online service offer Document language translations?

**A:**we are continually looking for service providers to put into this category. We have some now. http://officebeta.microsoft.com/marketplace/portalcategory.aspx?CategoryID=CE010171831033&CTT=4&Origin=ES790000601033 It is also available through the research and reference pane.

Host: Nick (Microsoft)
Q:
Will the Online site tailor to Location, since i am in Canada I still see the USA postal service to send items, this is no use to me. Will there be per say an Canadian focused version of the online site?

**A:**You can select Canada in the Office Worldwide page and the content on Office Online will be tailored to your locale.

Host: Matt (Microsoft)
Q:
The PPT Viewer at present does not install as it's own program it only works with the pack and go feature, will this change?

**A:**I don't know. Perhaps try the newsgroup - microsoft.beta.011iep.powerpoint.

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
Q:
What if any [research] plugins are planned?

**A:**I don't know that the Office team is writing any more at this time. We cannot release info about third party services yet.

Host: Rob (Microsoft)
Q:
I know that InfoPath will be sold separately, but is the current plan to offer InfoPath templates at the Office site?

**A:**They are not on the site today, but will they will be available by this fall.

Host: April (Microsoft)
Q:
How do I access the PPT newsgroup. I tried the address you gave previously and it did not work?

A:http://www.microsoft.com/office/community/en-us/default.mspx?d=1

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
Q:
Has permission been cleared on all of the ClipArt online? Okay to use?

**A:**Short answer: Yes. Longer answer: For full/official answers to all legal issues, refer to the EULA. The EULA is that big huge page of text just before download. :-) EULA = End user license agreement

Host: Nick (Microsoft)
Q:
The office beta site points me to the OLD Canadian Site for Office, will these worldwide sites be updated to support office 2003 when it launches?

**A:**No. Once the site is complete, the Canadian site will look like the US site (with different content).

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
Q:
Could Royal Mail (UK) not do the same as Stamps.com? To what extent would MS suggest such ideas to the partners?!

**A:**Yes, probably. Our business development team is always looking for partners, and partners can register on our site.

Host: Matt (Microsoft)
Q:
Sometimes but most of my comments are that the topic doesn't relate to the query.

**A:**That's still good feedback. Improving our search engine to give better answers is one of our key goals.

Host: Vlada (Microsoft)
Q:
In the templates section, could there not be a link to see templates sorted by program?

**A:**If you go to the product and search for templates you will only see templates for that program. We will also have program specific web pages that highlight templates and other program specific content. You can also search templates for the program name; you'll see the full list.

Host: Nick (Microsoft)
Q:
Does anyone have feedback on the help experience in VBA?

Host: April (Microsoft)
Q:
Thankyou for the general newsgroups site address. Is there a specific Beta newsgroup available?

**A:**Dave, you can ask beta questions at the link I gave you. That should get you the answer you need:)

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
Q:
Would there be any plans to make office 2003 compatible with me 98 ect?

**A:**No.

Host: Chris (Microsoft)
Q:
Will there be specialized online sites for schools and children?

**A:**We will have education-specific content on the site and easily located on an education page. Do you have a more specific question?

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
Q:
Why is there no plans? that means i will be stuck with office xp on my laptop =

**A:**For stability and security reasons, Office 2003 is supported only on Windows 2000 and later.

Host: April (Microsoft)
Q:
I asked the question there and the answer I received was to access the Beta newsgroup?

**A:**Are you part of the technical beta, do you have access to the beta newsgroups?

Host: Matt (Microsoft)
Q:
Even improving your search engine is ot going to improve search results because someone at the outset made a very ignorant decision not to include "standard" keywords.

**A:**I'm using "search engine" very generically - we will add new keywords and adjust our weightings to promote the best topics. In short, there are real people behind the scenes working to improve search on a regular basis.

Host: April (Microsoft)
Q:
I have the beta 2 Kit. What is technical beta?

**A:**How did you get the beta?

Host: Darrin (Microsoft)
Q:
When is the ETA for a fully Functional Office Online system? Will it be before office goes RTM?

**A:**It is fully functional now. We continue to find bugs and make improvements.

Moderator: Jamie (Microsoft)
Q:
will there be more program specific chats anytime soon, like for Outlook, Word etc etc. i know this is the wrong chat to ask

**A:**Yes, we are running application specific chats clear through the Beta. Check here for the schedule http://office.microsoft.com/home/default.aspx

Host: April (Microsoft)
Q:
I purchased it online and it was sent to me.

**A:**Then your best place to get an answer is the link I gave you, check back later today I will try to get you an answer

Host: Darrin (Microsoft)
Q:
Will there be a fee induced for the dictionary/thesaurus/etc services kind of like there seems to be now for the Encarta thing?

**A:**there will not be a fee for the one we ship. There may be additional ones that may charge a fee.

Host: Matt (Microsoft)
Q:
Will office Updates ever be integrated within windows updates?

**A:**This is a good idea, we've been looking into this.

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
Q:
Will there be any new clip art?

**A:**Yes. Initially, there will be several thousand new clips for Office 2003 customers, and we're going to continue to add clips on a regular schedule.

Host: Darrin (Microsoft)
Q:
when is the beta refresh going to be available?

**A:**We are working on it now. As soon as it is ready, we will make it available. Look at Officebeta.microsoft.com for it when it is ready.

Host: Eric (Microsoft)
Q:
Is there any clipart in Office 2003 Beta discs or it is only online?

**A:**The clips on disc will be the same clips which shipped on the OXP discs. New and over 100000 more clips are online.

Host: Nick (Microsoft)
Q:
Will the office online website work for previous versions of office?

**A:**There will be content for previous versions of Office. Also, much of our new content will be useful for more than one version.

Host: Darrin (Microsoft)
Q:
How about an area fro people who make their own clipart and fonts

**A:**This could be an area in the Office marketplace. Please submit this through the Office Marketplace

Host: Nick (Microsoft)
Q:
Is the help characters going to be on here? Or did they do away with them like the paper clip?

**A:**The Office Assistant is still available in Office 2003 but it is off by default.

Host: Nick (Microsoft)
Q:
Last thing: Are there any future plans on charging for "premium" images/templates etc?

**A:**Not in Office 2003.

Moderator: Jamie (Microsoft)
That's about all the time we have left for today's chat. Let's give our hosts our thanks and we'd like to thank you for your questions.

Host: Matt (Microsoft)
Thanks All. To continue to give us feedback on Office Online please submit feedback directly on this site. Click "Contact Us" on the bottom of every page, then "Send us your comments" (yes, we actually read it).

For further information on this topic please visit the following:

Newsgroup: http://www.microsoft.com/office/community/en-us/default.mspx?d=1

Office 2003 Transcripts: Read the archive

Website: Visit the Home Page for Microsoft Office Beta