In Office 2007 we introduced SmartArt diagrams, a tool designed to simplify the process of creating quality graphical layouts. The goal of every SmartArt diagram is to enhance the aesthetic appeal of your document and to use a graphic to convey a message. SmartArt diagrams adjust the size of all of your shapes and text for you as you add or remove content. You may also resize your entire graphic and all of the contents will be resized accordingly.
In the Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, and Word 2010 desktop applications we have added a series of improvements for SmartArt diagrams. First we looked at the editing experience and did work to simplify the process of creating a diagram that looks just the way you want it to. The second thing that we did was to increase your options when choosing a diagram by adding additional diagrams to our current types and by investing in a few new types as well.
One of the first things that we wanted to do was make it easier to see and organize your content. To this end, we added the ability to reorder your content and you can now insert or change your pictures via the text pane. I’ve called out the text pane in the screenshot below. Please note that in Office 2010 the SmartArt Text Pane will not have a bright red outline around it.
The images in the text pane represent images that appear in your SmartArt diagram. You may insert an image by clicking on the image icon either in the Text Pane or in your diagram directly. In the next screenshot you will notice that I have inserted four images with text for each image.
Another great improvement worth pointing out here is that my images did not get squished or stretched when I inserted them into my diagram. In Office 2010 we apply a crop to your image in order to preserve the aspect ratio of the image. After inserting your image, you may select the image, then go to the Picture Tools tab and enter crop mode to adjust your image. For our example, let’s adjust the image of the lighthouse so that we can actually see the lighthouse. I’ll select the image, then go to the Picture Tools tab and click Crop.
Here you can see that while in crop mode I can see the extra portions of the image that are not displayed in my diagram. I’ve clicked and dragged on the image itself to move it around so I can see more of the lighthouse. I’ve also enlarged the image for a zoomed in effect on the lighthouse.
The change is subtle but now we’re not staring at the rocky side of a cliff.
These pictures are nice but I would rather use pictures that are all connected in some way. Let’s create a picture layout with an image for each of the four seasons. I will click on each of the images in turn, and go to the Picture Tools tab. From the Picture Tools tab I will click Change Picture and select a new image for each spot. On a side note, each of the four images that you see below was pulled from the ClipArt gallery. Yep, those are ClipArt images.
Now that I have changed my images and the text associated with each I want the Fall image to be the large one. First, I’ll select the Fall image and go to the SmartArt Tools: Design tab.
With the Fall image selected, I will click Move Up until the Fall image is the largest on the screen. You will also notice in the above screenshot that in my Text Pane the Fall image is highlighted orange to show that it is selected.
Here is a close up of the left side of the SmartArt Tools: Design tab
Here is my diagram after clicking Move Up 3 times.
My text has moved with my image and you will notice that none of my images have become squished or stretched. Every image has an appropriate crop by default that I can customize if I wish.
It is important to know that Move Up and Move Down refer to the layout in the Text Pane. So for a SmartArt diagram that lays out its text and shape from bottom to top, Move Up will move your text up in the content pane but down on your slide. Here’s an example:
Here is a diagram that illustrates what I was attempting to explain. Notice that in my diagram the penguins are on the bottom while the chrysanthemum is on top. But in the text pane, the penguins are on top and the chrysanthemum is on bottom. With the chrysanthemum selected, I click Move Up and my diagram is reordered as such:
The flower moved down a slot in my diagram, but up one in my text pane.
For Office 2010 we have added almost 50 new diagrams bringing our total number of SmartArt diagrams to over 130. We had a couple of goals in mind when making this investment. First, we wanted to round out our offering by addressing additional scenarios that we had not previously addressed. In the Insert SmartArt diagram dialog you will notice the addition of the Picture category.
Office 2010 will ship with over 30 diagrams built specifically to incorporate images into your documents. Some of these Picture Layouts were built to fit into a wide variety of situations while others were built with slightly more specific scenarios in mind. In a later post, I’ll talk about some of the reasoning behind our choices.
Our second goal in adding more SmartArt diagrams is to give additional choices for our most popular scenarios. One example of this is the Organization Chart, our most popular diagram. In Office 2007 we only shipped one Org Chart. An org chart is a hierarchy diagram that supports assistants. For Office 2010 we have added an additional 3 org charts including one that lays out horizontally.
We hope that by adding to our offering of diagrams that it will be easier for you to find a graphic that does what you need it to. So whether that means telling a story with imagery or creating yet another org chart for the boss, there are lots of diagrams to choose from. And if you need to customize your graphic there’s an option for that too.
While we have done our best to provide you with a wide variety of diagrams sometimes it can be tough to find exactly what you need. In Excel and PowerPoint 2010 we have added Convert to Shapes for SmartArt diagrams.
Here I have included a screenshot from PowerPoint 2010. The Convert to Shapes feature turns your SmartArt diagram into a grouped set of shapes that you can now customize. This allows you to move and size your shapes with all the freedom of our current drawing tools. This also makes it easier to apply custom animations to your graphics. It is also worth noting that Convert to Shapes is included with Office 2007 SP2. You can access this by right clicking on the bounding box of your SmartArt diagram and clicking Ungroup.
In the screenshot above you’ll also notice the Convert to Text option. This exists only in PowerPoint 2010 and, as the name implies, will convert your graphic from a SmartArt diagram to a bulleted list of text with just a single click.
With these changes and additions we hope you’ll find SmartArt diagrams easier to use and incorporate into your documents. If you have any questions or want to share your experience using the features mentioned in the post, please let us know. Thanks!
We’re excited to announce that Office 2010 is available to business customers starting today! In addition to our virtual launch events, you can find more information below from a conversation that Takeshi Numoto had with Antoine Leblond, the engineering leader behind Office 2010. In it, he shares some of his insights into Office 2010 from an engineering perspective.
T: We’ve been talking about Office 2010 for over a year. Why are businesses going to tune into our “launch” on May 12?
A: Candidly, we all know that businesses have more productivity options now more than any other time in history. However, despite the hype, more than 90 million businesses rely on the Office applications to get work done. According to the 2010 CIO survey, 63% of respondents predict that IT department efforts will focus on improving end-user productivity, and 58% will focus on lowering operating costs. Office 2010 was built to help IT folks achieve these ends. The “launch” day, in my mind, is really a way to demonstrate that we’re delivering a solution that truly meets the needs of today’s businesses and into the future.
T: So it’s a day to showcase that we’ve listened to customers and built a product around their needs, that’s great. What do businesses really get with the Office 2010?
A: The proper answer would be to say that businesses get a reliable, secure and familiar suite that will help them innovate and grow. However, I’ll leave that marketing speak to you. :) I’ve spoken with numerous customers and they consistently say, ‘I need to save money, but not at the expense of worker productivity.’ We’ve been listening to customers and enhancing the tools they use every day to get work done for more than 20 years. We know that people today are working differently than a few years ago and expect their software to work the way they do. Think about the increased scenarios around collaboration, social networks, mobility, or use of multimedia in documents, just to name a few. So what businesses are getting are productivity tools that allow them to adapt to these various market trends including things like the move to the cloud on their own terms and with a consistent user experience they have trusted for decades.
T: How do you feel we’re addressing real business pain points with the new iteration of Office?
A: At the heart of Office 2010 is the idea that people need a productivity solution that allows them to work – in whatever capacity – from wherever they are. So when I hear you guys in marketing position Office 2010 as the “best experience across the PC, phone and browser,” I smile because that was exactly the underpinning assumption we used to build the product. With features like configurable Ribbon UI across apps, conversation view and “ignore” feature in Outlook, and improved interoperability for document formats, we put our customers in control of their productivity experience. So I feel comfortable saying that Office 2010 addresses the increasingly diverse workforce, gives businesses a means to improve productivity while controlling costs, and helps companies large and small better manage information overload.
T: In closing, tell me something I didn’t know.
A: Did you know that every month for 7 straight months one million people have downloaded Office 2010 beta? This, as you’ve said in the past, is the best software beta in our history, and showcases the demand for the enhanced value of Office 2010.
We hope you’ll tune in today to the virtual event to hear first-hand from some of our customers why they are investing in Office 2010 and the new 2010 series of products.
A few weeks ago we talked about Mobility in Office 2010 where we introduced you to Microsoft® Office Mobile 2010 for Windows® phones, and briefly described the Office applications that are designed to keep you productive on the move. In this post, we take a detailed look at PowerPoint Mobile which now features the ability to review and edit slides, and even acts as a companion to assist you as you deliver that big presentation!
Imagine you’re a sales rep on your way to meet a potential client who you hope to wow with the amazing presentation that your team has helped put together. As you travel to the client’s office in a cab, you pull out your Windows phone and check your email to review the latest draft of the presentation that your colleague has sent.
As always, PowerPoint Mobile provides a rich, high-fidelity view of the presentation. SmartArt Graphics, Images, Animations and Transitions are rendered in pixel perfect detail.
The brand new Outline view enables you navigate the presentation efficiently, and jump to a specific slide whenever you need to.
You browse through the presenter notes that have the talking points for each slide. As you read, you get a few more ideas which you feel you should talk about. No problem! PowerPoint Mobile now enables you to edit presenter notes, so you will always be prepared to deliver your best.
Next, you feel that the presentation needs some restructuring for it to make a better impact. Guess what? PowerPoint Mobile now lets you reorder the slides in your presentation, and even hide specific slides so they do not appear in the slideshow.
Finally, as you review the presentation one last time, you catch an error that has inadvertently crept in. No sweat! With PowerPoint Mobile, editing the slide is a breeze.
You thank your lucky stars (and PowerPoint Mobile) and send the edited presentation to your team to update them of the changes that you made.
When you arrive at the client office, you find that your colleague, who has arrived earlier, has been working on getting you set up for the presentation. The presentation that you had sent is up and running in PowerPoint 2010 on a laptop, which is already connected to a projection system.
That leaves just one thing for you to do. You use PowerPoint Mobile to turn your phone into a meeting aid in 3 simple steps. That’s right!
(* note that this needs Microsoft Bluetooth stack on the phone)
Presto! Your phone has been transformed into a meeting aid. Use it to control the presentation that is running on the laptop. As a bonus, you can view the presenter notes for each slide on your phone, even as the slideshow is projected for your audience from the laptop. This gives you the freedom to connect better with your audience, and provide that extra spark which helps you clinch the deal!
Hello, my name is Didier and I am a Security Program Manager in the Microsoft Security Engineering Center. We focus on helping teams like Office go beyond the minimum requirements of the Security Development Lifecycle (SDL). For Office 2010, I worked closely with members of the Office TWC team. The Microsoft SDL is a security assurance process that is focused on software development. As a company-wide initiative and a mandatory policy since 2004, the SDL has played a critical role in embedding security and privacy in software and culture at Microsoft. Combining a holistic and practical approach, the SDL aims to reduce the number and severity of vulnerabilities in software. The SDL introduces security and privacy throughout all phases of the development process.
I would like to highlight some achievements that were completed during Office 2010 development that will help keep our customers secure.
There are more than 50 requirements in the SDL that apply to the phases in the development process: training, requirements, design, implementation, verification, release, and response (post-release). The requirements and recommendations of SDL are not static; they are changed on a regular basis in the light of emerging threats and improvements to supporting infrastructure, tools, and processes. The following image shows the phases in the SDL process:
Some of the tools and techniques that are used to support the SDL process have been released externally. It is possible to download these tools and others from the Microsoft SDL Tools Repository (http://www.microsoft.com/security/sdl/getstarted/tools.aspx).
In addition to passing the Final Security Review mandated by the SDL process, the Office 2010 team also met additional emerging SDL requirements such as integrating the improved integer overflow libraries, compiling with the enhanced GS flag, and executing a number of fuzzing iterations far beyond the SDL requirement. These were the most impactful of the additional SDL requirements met by Office 2010.
The Office TWC team developed customized training on integer overflow mitigations, file fuzzing and Web security (mostly Cross-Site Scripting (XSS) and Cross-Site Request Forgery (XSRF)). These trainings were mandatory across the entire Office Division. In addition, more specific training was designed and delivered to bring FAST, a newly acquired product, up to speed with the various tools and activities required by the SDL.
Office TWC and MSEC worked on redefining the security bug bar and the security bug triage process to include newer attacks. Part of the process was to leverage expertise in both the Office and TWC divisions to review security bugs.
During the design phase, several work items were identified to strengthen the trustworthiness of Office documents. These work items brought improvement to the Trust Center by adding Trusted Documents, File Block improvement that allows users to choose which files they want to open or save on their network, Office File Validation and Protected View. These improvements were done so customers can trust Office documents without fear of being attacked. In addition, another goal was to provide this additional security while avoiding unnecessary prompts that would lead to prompt fatigue, decreasing the security value of these features. You can read more on those features at http://blogs.technet.com/office2010/archive/2009/07/21/office-2010-application-security.aspx.
Office TWC did a large scale threat model exercise across the division, creating and reviewing over 500 threat models. Through the threat model activity, the team identified and fixed over 1000 potential security issues.
Another area of improvement was the Cryptography support in Office 2010. These improvements included support for XAdES digital signature, making the Office client applications cryptographically agile by allowing them to use any cryptographic algorithm made available by the operating system (Windows Vista and above only), and a new feature for Enterprises enabling domain password policy for password encryption.
Office TWC implemented an automated solution to improve the reporting of Office Automated Code Review (OACR) results allowing MSEC and Office TWC to identify Office product teams with code quality issues prior to the verification phase or before any penetration testing was performed. This allowed teams to direct their effort at areas where it was more valuable.
Based on the analysis done on incoming reported vulnerabilities in previous versions of Office, an improved version of safeInt was developed and used in Office 2010
An improved version of GS (enhanced GS which is available in Visual Studio 2010) was introduced during the Office 2010 development cycle and was piloted with 3 large components of Office 2010, no major regression issues were found and this feature will be integrated in the next version of Office. Office 2010 enables Data Execution Prevention (DEP) for the first time and if you are using Office 2010 on Windows 7, it will use SEHOP, preventing the exploitation of structured exception handlers (http://blogs.technet.com/srd/archive/2009/02/02/preventing-the-exploitation-of-seh-overwrites-with-sehop.aspx).
Additional mitigations have been put in place in SharePoint 2010 to improve multi-tenant hosting and Cross Site Scripting mitigations. The most important security improvements were sandboxing SharePoint solutions using a mix of Code Access Security and a custom developed sandbox. An additional mitigation for Cross Site Scripting was to use browser headers to force potentially unsafe content to download and we raised permissions required to author scripts.
Distributed fuzzing was run from the beginning of the development cycle with constant refinement on the fuzzers used. This persistent effort has been one of the greatest investments made by Office to improve the security of the parsers in Office. The use of Distributed Fuzzing Framework is now expanded across the company and will be one of the key elements of the next SDL version. The number of fuzzing iterations for Office 2010 was over 800 million iterations across over 400 file formats resulting in over 1800 bugs fixed. In addition to file format fuzzing, the Distributed Fuzzing Framework was used to fuzz all ActiveX controls shipping with Office 2010 extensively.
An automated infrastructure was setup during Office 2010 to run most of the verification tools required by the SDL (like BinScope) as part of the build process. This allowed the Office Team to run those tools more frequently allowing for timely identification and faster remediation of issues.
Both internal and external penetration testing was conducted during the Office 2010 development cycle. This testing targeted the high risk features identified during the design phase and covered several products both in the client and server SKUs
Hopefully all of these efforts combined will make Office 2010 much more robust and will bring back some peace of mind for customers when the receive documents from untrusted sources.
In addition to this post, Microsoft published a whitepaper couple of months ago on how SDL helped improved the 2007 Microsoft Office System. You can find this whitepaper at http://go.microsoft.com/?linkid=9714223
Lead Security Program Manager
Microsoft Security Engineering Center
Hello blog readers! Next week the TechNet blog servers will be upgraded to support new features such as invisible captcha (you won’t need to enter numbers before commenting), a new excerpt view for easier browsing of blog posts, and easier sharing of posts on your favorite social sites like Facebook, Windows Live, or Twitter. As part of the upgrade process we will be disabling comments from Sunday, May 16 at 8:30pm PST to Monday, May 24th, at 12pm PST. We apologize for the inconvenience but are excited to introduce new functionality to the blog. Our blog will remain online during the upgrade process and existing comments will be preserved.
Our friends over at blogs.office.com just started a series of “Did You Know?” posts that are aimed at starting conversations with you about trends that affect us all. Cloud computing, mobile/remote work styles, and social networking - and how Office 2010 and SharePoint 2010 help users embrace them in new and powerful ways. The first introductory post from Takeshi Numoto (Corporate VP, Office) is available now.