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a) a .doc file named something like whatever.rdf.doc, or
b) a .rtf file named something like whatever.rdf.rtf, or
c) a .txt file named something like whatever.rdf.txt

and in the WIndows world competencies often do not seem to extend to
users being able to recognize these filenames (the extensions are
usually hidden) or, worse yet, rename them appropriately (I had a
phonecon with a "Microsoft Certified Support Engineer" who did not
understand how to use DOS commands to do so). Every week we run into
these problems, and when we tell them to "use a text editor to create
text files" they have no idea what we mean.

So what I fear will emerge from a "Word template" approach is something
other than a plain text ASCII file named whatever.sthlp. Any solution of
this nature MUST generate such files as part of its remit to be anything
other than a waste of time. I think it would be easy to write something
that did that in perl, php, python, or Mata (using Stata's dialog
boxes), but I do not see MS Word contributing anything but confusion to
the process.

Also keep in mind that Word macros and VBA are (a) generally regarded as
security risks and (b) not available in all current versions of MS
Office, so the notion that all of this can be motorized through Visual
Basic is not a solution for all Stata users.

On Nov 22, 2009, at 2:33 AM, Roy wrote:

> I think this idea has a merit as long as it can be implemented in a
> format that is EASY FOR EVERYONE. I would suggest a Word template
> because (1) it is accessible to everyone, (2) easy to write, which
> means you can write it like a paper, and (3) easy to add references at
> end. I assume smcl tags can embedded from inside Word document.
> And I do propose to have a section for references in the template. If
> you going to have a fresh batch of ado file, you do want them placed
> into a system that is relatively secure from people with a known
> history of plagiarizing programs. Anyone who leaves it blank is liable
> to claiming sole creativity over the ado file.
> People who don't like Word can think of this as an opportunity to
> showcase how much better they can do it with TeX.

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