Microsoft Office Importer Adds ProjectWise Support


By Eiren Smith
What do MicroStation users do if they want to easily import large spreadsheets and word processing data into their design files with perfect formatting? What if they want to maintain a link to the original spreadsheet so that if something changes in the spreadsheet, the design file can be easily — interactively or automatically — updated? What if they use ProjectWise?

Microsoft Office Importer — which now talks to ProjectWise — lets you import word processing and spreadsheet data into your design files with formatting you control.

I'm a little tight on space this month so I'll keep it brief. I want to tell you about Microsoft Office Importer's brand-new and most excellent support for Bentley ProjectWise.

You all know what Microsoft Office Importer is, right? It's Axiom's super-popular tool for bringing data from Excel spreadsheets and Word documents into MicroStation with perfect formatting with a link to the source spreadsheet or document. Users open the spreadsheet or document, copy what they want to the clipboard, then jump over to MicroStation and paste that data, using the "Paste Clipboard Contents" button on Microsoft Office Importer's toolbar. In addition to bringing the data in with perfect formatting, it provides tons of options so you can have things formatted exactly the way you want. Microsoft Office Importer also provides a link from that design file back to the spreadsheet or document so that pasted data in the design file can be easily (interactively or automatically) updated anytime in the future if the source spreadsheet or document file changes.

Enter ProjectWise
Microsoft Office Importer has long made all the above extremely easy to do, but (until now) wasn't able to communicate with ProjectWise. So when Microsoft Office Importer would go to see if the spreadsheet or document had changed, that spreadsheet or document had to be in the exact same location it was when it was originally pasted into that design file. This meant two things:

  • The user had to check that spreadsheet or document out of ProjectWise before Microsoft Office Importer could check to see if the design file needed to be updated from that spreadsheet or document; and
  • The user had to check the spreadsheet or document out to exactly the same folder as it was checked out to the first time it was pasted into that design file, as that's where Microsoft Office Importer was going to look for it at update time.

All this was because Microsoft Office Importer simply didn't talk to ProjectWise. I'm happy to report that that's now totally handled. Now, when Microsoft Office Importer needs to see if the design file needs to be updated, Microsoft Office Importer can talk to ProjectWise and check out any needed files automatically. This means that Microsoft Office Importer updates of spreadsheet and document data in design files are now totally workable for ProjectWise users.

As I mentioned above, I'm tight on space this month. Check back in the future for a detailed description of how this all works. But don't let that keep you from trying out the new version of Microsoft Office Importer with ProjectWise support for yourself. It's so easy to use, you really don't need to know anything that non-ProjectWise Microsoft Office Importer users don't know. Take it for a spin!