October, 2006

Doug Mahugh - Office Interoperability

Doug Mahugh

Microsoft Interoperability Team
  • Doug Mahugh

    Open XML diff utility

    Many people have asked me about a Diff tool for Open XML: something that would show what has changed in an Open XML document, so that you can compare two versions of a document and easily see the differences. A diff tool for Open XML is not a trivial thing to build, because there are various types of parts which may change, and relationships between those parts may change, content types may change, you may have non-XML parts, and ... lots of details. Stephane Rodriguez has decided to work through...
  • Doug Mahugh

    Vista RC2: goodbye, XP

    Well, I've taken the plunge: I flattened my laptop yesterday, and installed Vista RC2 (5744) and the latest Office release candidate (4518.1006). So far I love it, and I haven't encountered anything in the first 24 hours that looks like a bug. This is the first time I've had such a smooth and trouble-free experience in installing any version of the 2007 Office clients, which seems a good sign that we're getting close to an RTM-ready build. My tired XP configuration, with dozens of programs installed...
  • Doug Mahugh

    Virtual PC 2007 beta

    Now that I've flattened my laptop and gone to running nothing but Vista, I need to re-install all the applications I use in my work. And one application I use a lot is Virtual PC. We use it for demos, proof-of-concepts, and for re-creating all the various development environments that we've built around pre-release versions of Office: everything from DF4 through B1, B1TR, B2, B2TR, and later builds. So I just installed the latest beta version of Virtual PC 2007 ( you can download it here ), and...
  • Doug Mahugh

    Programmatically creating content controls

    The concept of content controls is one of the most powerful features in the new Open XML file formats. It allows developers to truly separate the presentation of custom XML fields in a rich word-processing document from the underlying XML nodes themselves. Content controls let you create a complex-looking document that has a simple little XML part within it, and developers can repopulate the document with custom values (generated from a database system, say) by writing a simple little XML chunk...
  • Doug Mahugh

    Backward Compatibility

    Before I started at Microsoft, I worked at a wholesale auto auction for a few years. In 1999-2000, I wrote a line-of-business app for the auction in Visual FoxPro, and we called that app SERVIS. (That was a derivative of "customer SERVice Information System" ... it somehow made sense at the time.) I thought it would be fun, now that I've got Vista RC2 and a very recent build of Office installed on my laptop, to check out how SERVIS runs in this environment. I had already tried this with an earlier...
  • Doug Mahugh

    Paris MOSS Workshop

    The Paris workshop has been going great, with an all-star team of MOSS experts supporting the ISVs in their development of leading-edge applications on the MOSS 2007 platform. For this one we have Jeff Fattic of Quilogy, Hannes DeCorte of U2U, Jimmy Löfkvist (MS-Sweden), and our host at the MTC, Guillaume Renaud (MS-France). This facility has some great hi-tech demo areas, and this afternoon we took a tour of the top floor with its Xbox test stations and outdoor patio area featuring great views of...
  • Doug Mahugh

    Open XML Podcasts

    If you're too busy to learn about the Open XML file formats, here's something to do on the way home from work tonight: listen to some podcasts about Open XML. It won't take a single minute out of your day, and you'll get an overview of how the formats work, what developers can do with them, and the benefits they offer to users and developers. Brian Jones and I recorded an ARCast with Ron Jacobs over in MS Studios last month, and it's now available online as a two-part podcast. Here are the links...
  • Doug Mahugh

    Converting SpreadsheetML to generic XML

    Muthy Kumar Arjunan has written an interesting article entitled "XSL transformation of SpreadsheetML to generic XML" that is posted on OpenXmlDeveloper.org . The article, which includes complete XSL and source code, shows how to use XSL to transform a SpreadsheetML document into a single simple XML stream that is easy to display or consume in web services and other software.
  • Doug Mahugh

    Office and Open XML: now available in 7 languages

    Don Campbell beat me to it, but this is so good I want to mention it too: MSDN's Erika Ehrli has posted an interactive version of the Developer Map for the 2007 Microsoft Office System poster that she has been putting together. It's three things in one: a well-organized visual overview of the Office developer landscape, a tool for learning more (try clicking on a section you're interested in), and an example of the great looking graphics you can easily create in PowerPoint 2007. It's also a great...
  • Doug Mahugh

    Samples from the Ecma spec

    I've been going through the final draft version of the Ecma Office Open XML spec , to put together some samples for a project I'm working on. And in the course of doing so, I've been pleasantly surprised by how many markup examples can be found in the spec. In the Markup Language Reference , you'll find lots of markup samples right there with the tag definitions, ready to try out. For example, here are a few simple things you can do with table cells ... The samples above are simply pasted from...
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