Chapter 3. Using WordprocessingML

While learning WordprocessingML can be fun and interesting in its own right, what’s really exciting is the prospect of being able to process the information in Word documents in new and fresh ways. No longer are you confined to the world of VBA and the Microsoft object model. In fact, you’re not even restricted to using Windows. Once you save a Word document as XML, you can process it using any tool or environment that supports XML. And creating Word documents with such tools is a snap. This chapter explores some tools and potential applications for WordprocessingML, with an emphasis on XSLT. Essentially, what we present here is a mini-cookbook of XSLT scripts for WordprocessingML.

Endless Possibilities

We have to be careful when talking about use cases for generating and processing Word documents. By defining categories too strictly, we might completely ignore possibilities that others have explored or have yet to explore. The purpose of this chapter is to help open your mind as to what’s possible now that the expanse of information found in all the world’s Word documents is suddenly capable of being unlocked and exposed as XML. The categories and examples in this chapter are only the tip of the iceberg. Perhaps they will help trigger some of your own ideas and creativity. When reading along, if you think of an example that we failed to cover, then we have succeeded in our goal!

That said, you can break down the scripts in this chapter into three ...

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