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Annoying Doc

I hate it when online documentation tells you everything except how to do what you’re trying to do. For example, type “multiple chapters” into Word XP’s help box and you’ll get taken to listings about “master documents.” So far so good. But the explanation of what master documents are and what you can use them for includes everything except how you create one.

Fortunately, we have the Web where a quick googling turns up a very helpful site. And it’s advice on master documents is:

How can I best use the Master Document feature?

Answer: Don’t use it. It has serious bugs and will corrupt your entire document at the most inconvenient time possible. (This advice to not use Master Documents reported as correct through Word 2000, SR-2.) John McGhie puts it succinctly when he says that there are two kinds of Master Documents: Those that are corrupt and those that will be corrupt soon.

BTW, this is exactly the type of thing Interleaf — where I used to work — was great at handling. Too bad we lost to Word.

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6 Responses to “Annoying Doc”

  1. Master documents in Word serve one single case, where you have many editors who need to edit different parts of the same Word document at the same time, which can’t be done in a normal Word document. Other than that, it’s useless. And buggy, yes. Wiki anyone?

  2. Your link here doesn’t work. Really curious about what this website is about!

  3. Wow. The url in my link is correct. That is, it’s the first link if you google on ‘word “master documents”‘ [remove single quotes]. It was up yesterday and gone today. Well, here’s the cache:

  4. Try
    also found via Google

  5. David, I didn’t really read beyond the headline, but I know, I know, Doc *can* be annoying. However, don’t you think you should cut him a little slack? I mean, yeah, he can be a royal asshole, but most of the time he’s OK. When he takes the meds anyway. And it’s not like *you’ve* never annoyed *us*! Is it? Be honest here and I think you’ll see the essential truth of what I’m saying.


  6. I just read the rest of your post.


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