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Part 2: Working Across Applications > Linking and Embedding

Chapter 10. Linking and Embedding

It's not uncommon for users of office suites to work primarily in a single application. If this describes you, we'd like to encourage you to experiment, play, and find new ways to create better documents or to improve your efficiency by exploring other parts of the software. Working inside a single office suite makes this easy, for a number of reasons. Firstly, a common core means that it's possible to take some text, a table, or a drawing from one part of the package and insert it in another. This also makes it possible to create a range of documents, such as presentations, invoices, flyers, and letterheads, that use a common theme, color palette, and design, knowing that each application will treat this information in the same way. Secondly, the common toolset means that if you've edited table borders in Writer, you can do the same thing in Impress, giving users a head start on an unfamiliar application before they've even booted up. And finally, using OpenOffice.org means that you could say to your colleagues: "I'm working on a document in Writer and I need to share it with you. You can open it in Word, or, if you don't want to spend a couple of hundred bucks, pounds, or euros, go to http://www.openoffice.org and download your own copy of the software."

In this chapter you're going to undertake a few cross-platform excursions to look at the different methods available for linking and embedding documents and objects in other documents and using data from a separate database to create personalized letters for lots of people. By playing to an application's strengths rather than sticking with a limited subset of features, you get the benefits of both. And the various methods of linking means it's entirely possible to return to a document's original application to make changes and have that updated in the host application. You're also going to take a brief look at OpenOffice.org's macro system, which you can use to automate regular tasks in any of the included applications.


  

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