Including data from another source can save you time in creating and refining your project plan in Microsoft Office Project 2003.
Copying or moving information within or between schedules
Copying or sharing information with other programs
You may have information created in other programs that you want to use in your schedule. For example, you can copy a list of tasks from an Office Word 2003 document and paste it into the table portion of the Gantt Chart view. You can copy or import an employee list from your Payroll department into a resource sheet. You can even copy information from an e-mail message and paste it into a task, resource, or assignment note.
You can also link or embed project information from your plan, or even an entire view, in other programs that support linking and embedding (a database, spreadsheet, or presentation, for example) or link the information from its source file so that it stays up to date.
Adding graphics to illustrate your project
Before distributing your project to team members, executives, or other stakeholders, you may want to add graphics such as your company's logo or a project-related Microsoft Office Excel 2003 chart. Graphics give reports a finished look, clarify or enhance information, and draw attention to important information.
You can add graphics by copying and pasting, linking or embedding, and drawing directly in your plan using the Project drawing features. You can place graphics in the header or footer of a view (view: The combination of one or more views [Gantt Chart, Resource Sheet, and so on] and if applicable, a table and a filter. Use views to work with information in a variety of formats. There are three types of views: Charts or graphs, Sheets, and Forms.) or report (report: A format in which you can print schedule information that is appropriate for the intended recipients. You can use the predefined reports provided by Project or create custom reports.), in the chart portion of the Gantt Chart view, in any note, or in the Objects box (objects box: An area that you can display on forms that holds linked or embedded objects.) of any task form or resource form.
You can also copy Project information as a picture for use in other documents, including Web pages.
Adding a video file to your plan
You can use a program such as Windows Media Player, a Microsoft Windows accessory that lets you play audio, video, or animation files to insert a video file into a Project file.
Linking or embedding objects
You can include information from another program or insert an entire document into your plan by linking or embedding it in Project as an object. The main difference between linking (linking: In a project, establishing a dependency between tasks. Linking tasks defines a dependency between their start and finish dates. In OLE, establishing a connection between programs so that data in one document is updated when it changes in another.) objects and embedding objects (embedded object: Information [the object] inserted in a file [the destination file]. Once embedded, the object becomes part of the destination file. When you double-click an embedded object, it opens in the program it was created in [the source program].) is the location of the data and how it is updated after you place it in the destination file.
To reflect any changes to the original data or if file size is a consideration, you should use a linked object. With a linked object, the original information remains stored in the source file. The destination file displays a representation of the linked information but stores only the location of the original data. The linked information is updated automatically if you change the original data in the source file. For example, if you select a range of cells in an Excel workbook and then paste the cells as a linked object or linked data in a Project plan, the information is updated in Project if you change the information in the Microsoft Office Excel 2003 workbook.
In contrast, an embedded object becomes part of the destination file. Users who do not have access to the original data can open the file on another computer and view the embedded object. Because an embedded object has no links to the source file, the object is not updated if you change the original data. To change an embedded object, double-click the object to open and edit it in the source program. The source program (or another program capable of editing the object) must be installed on your computer. If you copy information as an embedded object, the destination file requires more disk space than if you link the information.