richardtallent richardtall​ent

Niner since 2005

programmer, photographer, musician, armchair theologian, television junkie.


  • Brian Jones - New Office file formats announced

    First, THANK YOU THANK YOU for the new file extentions and the 2k/XP/2k3 compatibility. This is something I ranted at over a year ago
    , and I *still* can't add ExcelML to my apps because of clients and even employees not yet using Office 2003. Giving outdated Office users a path for backwards compatibility will remove developer worries about moving forward with these formats.

    A few questions:

    1. Can we still load *uncompressed* XML files if there is no need for an archive? When they saves, will they retain their uncompressed state if nothing is embedded that requires enclosure?

    2. Why Zip files? Obviously decent compression, but why not one of the XML-based schemas for XML and binary enclosures, (e.g., Echo/RSS)?
    I just RTA, found the answer...

    3. Will Office VBA developers have direct access to the XML DOM? That would be *sweet*.

    4. Will the Excel ODBC driver be updated to work with these XLSX files natively? If so, will the 255-character ROWSCAN truncation issue be resolved?

    5. Will an entire Excel workbook be considered a single XML file as before, or will worksheets be stored as separate XML files? (my vote is for the same single-file format, FWIW). Nevermind, found the answer in the article...

    6. For PowerPoint, I would love to see the opposite: separate files for each slide, allowing easy programmatic means of compiling presentations from libraries of "best practice" slides. PPT is actually the most exciting prospect of the three to be able to access via ZIP code.

    7. For Word forms, where will current form data be stored? In a separate file like Acrobat's XFDF?

    8. For secure files, which ZIP encryption standard will you be employing, if any? The WinZip method or the PKZip method? I seem to remember that there was some patent frap about this a few years ago...

    9. While you are at it, any built-in support for SVG in any of the applications?