The Limits of Word's XML Support

We've covered a lot of ground in this chapter regarding Word's support for and integration with XML. Clearly this integration expands the capability of Word to act as a source of business application data and an integration point for other XML-based resources. Even with all the integration capabilities we've discussed, there are still some limits to what Word can support.

When to Use Microsoft InfoPath or Another Tool Instead of Word

Microsoft InfoPath is a new product in the Microsoft Office System. Microsoft InfoPath was designed with teams and organizations in mind whose main purpose in their job is to collect and use information. Easy creation of powerful input forms that include business logic validation, auto correction, spell checking, and rich-text formatting as a front end to XML data sources are the strength of Microsoft InfoPath.

Consider using Microsoft InfoPath or another tool if

  • You need fast and efficient data input

  • You frequently need to build front-end forms for data input

  • You need rich-text forms style formatting

  • You need business logic validation

  • You need automatic data-source updating without having to worry about file formats (that is, WordML versus data-only XML)

    Part I: Word Basics: Get Productive Fast
    Part II: Building Slicker Documents Faster
    Part III: The Visual Word: Making Documents Look Great
    Part IV: Industrial-Strength Document Production Techniques
    Part VI: The Corporate Word