Spotlight + Microsoft??

in macOS edited January 2014
During the keynote, at about 9:00, Steve mentioned that Microsoft is developing applications that include Spotlight technology. From the context it seems to me that he means more than just searching and indexing Office documents.

Any ideas what that could mean? I wasn't expecting a new version of Office until 2007 or so, but what else is there? VPC? What would be the use of Spotlight in Word or Excel? Steve didn't mention that Spotlight technology was integrated in Pages or Keynote, so where would Microsoft go with it?

I don't mean to be incredulous, I just don't see it.


  • Reply 1 of 5
    mcqmcq Posts: 1,543member
    First thing I'm thinking of is to see a live list of related documents/items to the one you're currently working on. Suppose you're in Word typing up something, and you have a related PP presentation, excel file or whatever containing information about that business or topic. It could show up in a sidebar or palette as a related file.
  • Reply 2 of 5
    Okay - so that would be a variation on the smart folders functionality that Spotlight allows. I can see that being helpful as a workflow tool, but not really a benefit for word processing or number crunching.

    <Software discussion>

    As a programming consideration, what are the implications for Office then? Can Spotlight be incorporated with minimum effort, or is a significant rewrite required? Does this imply that Office will incorporate other OS X-specific technologies such as the global address book, Core*, etc? A rewritten, more-native Office would be nice.

    </Software Discussion>
  • Reply 3 of 5
    mcqmcq Posts: 1,543member
    There are search APIs available to tap into the Spotlight repository, so yeah, it shouldn't be that difficult for MS if they want to incorporate something utilizing that information.

    I'm pretty sure there's an API to tap into the Address Book, but I don't know about iPhoto (i.e. adding some photo from there into a Word doc).
  • Reply 4 of 5
    Adding support for indexing a proprietary format (such as .doc or .exl) is just a matter of writing a plug-in for Spotlight (trivial for a large organization). So they may mean that level of support. I would guess that the current version of Office would not get anything more, as it would make the new version Tiger-only (unless you put in a lot of gestalt checking for UI's... something that can be difficult).

    AddressBook definitely has an API (both Cocoa and Carbon), and it is easy to use, but Micorsoft has avoided using it because they want compatibility with Outlook Server addressbooks.

    I have not seen anything about the open/import dialogs being Spotlight enabled, but that could be a route in.
  • Reply 5 of 5

    Originally posted by Karl Kuehn

    I have not seen anything about the open/import dialogs being Spotlight enabled, but that could be a route in.

    I hadn't thought about dialogs, but that makes a lot of sense.
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