If you're heading out to TechEd this week like I am, you should definitely plan on attending Tristan Davis' talk on Thursday afternoon that covers the new functionality in Word 2007 for custom XML solutions.

This talk goes into great detail on the true power of XML in Office applications. XML file formats are obviously important, but the really exciting stuff isn't what you can do with the wordprocessing schemas but instead it's with the support for your own schemas. People want their office documents to seemlessly interoperate with business processes and solutions, and custom schema support is the way you can achieve it. With schemas like Open XML and ODF, you are generating wordprocessing documents, spreadsheets, and presentations. With custom defined schema support, you can take it to the next level and instead create invoices, trip reports, product specifications, research reports, pitchbooks, reviews, articles, resumes, applications, etc., etc., etc. There are no limits to the types of documents you can create, as you have the ability to define the schema.

I blogged earlier this year on both the importance of custom defined schemas as well as the new content controls in Word 2007. There is also a new article up on openxmldeveloper that shows some more examples of how to drop your own XML into a .docx file and map the values into the surface of the document.

Here is the description of Tristan's talk where he'll show a number of examples as well as dig into the ways you can leverage Word 2007 to build powerful solutions:

OFC335 Microsoft Office Word 2007 XML Programmability: True Data/View Separation and Rich Eventing for Custom XML

Day/Time: Thursday, June 15 4:30 PM - 5:45 PM Room: 257 AB
Speaker(s): Tristan Davis

Microsoft Office Word 2007 brings a data model that allows data and presentation to be managed separately, extending the structured document concept introduced in Word 2003. This includes significant investments in the support for custom XML data in the new Office Open XML file formats, as well as rich access to that data from within the application. Developers can work directly against the XML data via XML mappings to the Word document, or via embedded InfoPath solutions in the Document Information Panel. In this session, we introduce these new capabilities, then dive into the functionality of the Office XML data store (which provides custom XML storage), and how it can be leveraged to build solutions that will strongly tie Word documents to your business processes.

Track(s): Office System
Session Type(s): Breakout Session
Session Level(s): 300

Hope to see you all there.

-Brian