If you've ever spent a lot of time commenting on a document only to find out that your comments got lost in the shuffle, you'll be delighted to learn about Document Workspaces. A Document Workspace is a new type of Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services Web site that offers one-stop shopping for document collaboration. On the site, you can find the documents you're supposed to comment on — as well as announcements, assigned tasks, relevant links, and more.
However, one of the handiest things about a Document Workspace is that you never even have to visit the Web site to take advantage of the features it offers. When you receive an e-mail message inviting you to join a Document Workspace, you can just download the attached file — whether you're using Microsoft Office Word 2003, Microsoft Office Excel 2003, Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2003, or Microsoft Office Visio 2003. When you're working in your local copy, you can use the Shared Workspace task pane to make updates to and receive updates from the workspace copy. You can also check off tasks, and access other information from the workspace site. With a Document Workspace, you can be confident that your comments will never go astray.
Note For screen reader text detailing the onscreen actions and a screen reader version of the audio script, click Demo text version.
Demo text version
|Janet Leverling's Microsoft Office Outlook 2003 Inbox shows a list of messages. The pointer selects the first message, which is from Michael, and has an attachment. The message opens.
||I assume that Michael's e-mail message is just a run-of-the-mill request for comments on an attached document. Then I open the message.
|In the open message, the pointer points to the attachment. Then, it moves down to some text enclosed in a blue box. The text explains that Janet has been invited to the Employee Handbook Document Workspace, and that she can work in either the shared attachment or the workspace copy of the document.
||The attachment is there as usual, but so is a note telling me that I've been invited to a Document Workspace, a new type of Microsoft Windows SharePoint Services Web site that makes document collaboration easier.
|On the File menu in the open e-mail message, the pointer points to Save Attachments. The open e-mail message disappears, and Word 2003 appears with the Employee Handbook document open. An open dialog box explains that a copy of the document is stored in a Document Workspace. Text in the dialog box also explains that your local copy of the document can be updated periodically while you work on it if changes have been made to the workspace copy. The pointer clicks the Get Updates button in that dialog box.
I save the attachment to my computer.
When I open the document, the first thing I do is make sure that my local copy includes any updates that Michael may have made to the workspace copy.
|Then the pointer clicks the Tasks tab in the Shared Workspace task pane that is open on the right side of the document. The second task, assigned to Janet, says Add Intro section. Janet finishes typing the introduction, and then the pointer moves to the Shared Workspace task pane and checks off Janet's task in the check box.
||Then, I notice the Shared Workspace task pane. On the Tasks tab, I discover that I'm supposed to revise the Introduction. I locate that section, and add the text I've been working on. Back in the Shared Workspace task pane, I check off my task so Michael knows I've completed it.
|The pointer clicks the Save button on the Standard toolbar. The Shared Workspace task pane displays the Status tab. The pointer clicks a link on this tab called Update Workspace Copy to save the changes Janet made to her local copy of the document to the copy stored in the Document Workspace.
||I save my document and then save my revisions to the workspace copy, so they will be available to other workspace members.
|The pointer moves to a link at the top of the Shared Workspace task pane called Open site in browser. The document disappears and the Document Workspace Web site appears. Scrolling down the page, you can see sections labelled Announcements, Shared Documents, and Tasks. The Employee Handbook document to which Janet added the introduction is in the Shared Documents section. Janet's task, called Add Intro section, is listed in the Tasks section. Its status says Completed, because Janet checked it off earlier in the Shared Workspace task pane.
||I use the handy link at the top of the task pane to go directly to the Document Workspace Web site, where I can read announcements, see a list of members, and get an overall picture of the document status.
The Web site disappears and the e-mail message from the beginning of the video reappears. The pointer clicks the attachment in the message and then moves across the blue box where text describes the Document Workspace. The message disappears.
The animated text Experience Your Own Great Moments appears. Under it appears the static text For more information followed by a URL: http://www.microsoft.com/office.
|Now that you've seen how convenient it is to collaborate using a Document Workspace, you're ready to explore other ways that Office 2003 takes the run-of-the-mill out of everyday tasks.
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