What was the
development time of Publisher 2003? How many people were on the
began development in early March 2001 and was released to manufacturing
in August 2003. The core Publisher team included 35-40 people
(developers, testers, program managers, user assistance), although we
leverage a lot of resources from the broader Office team, so it is
definitely a bigger effort than just that core group.
What new and
improved features does Publisher 2003 have over the previous version?
Below is a
sampling of some of the new and improved features. A feature comparison
guide for majority of features in Publisher 2003 is available online at
Master Design Sets:
10 new Master Design Sets for a total of 45 Master Design Sets. Master
Design Sets are coordinated sets of common business publications:
newsletters, brochures, flyers, postcards, Quick Publications, business
cards, Web sites, and more.
New Catalog Merge:
This feature makes it possible to merge text and pictures from a data
source to create a new merged publication with multiple records per
page. This is especially helpful for frequently updated, content-rich
publications like catalogs and datasheets. Data sources include the
standard sources already supported, such as Excel and Access.
The E-Mail Wizard includes support for all 45 Master Sets, with six
layout options. This wizard can help Publisher users quickly and easily
create a professional-looking e-mail message to send to new or existing
Send e-mail using Microsoft Office Outlook® 2003 or Microsoft Outlook
Express 5.0 or later; recipients can view e-mail messages not only in
Outlook and Outlook Express, but also in Web-based e-mail services such
as Hotmail®, America Online (AOL), and Yahoo.
CMYK Composite Postscript:
process-color—or cyan-magenta-yellow-black (CMYK)—composite postscript
files, which is a feature highly requested by commercial printers and
makes it easier for you to get your Publisher 2003 publications
Multiple master pages:
Repeat background design and layout elements on multiple pages in a
Templates on Office Online:
Download Publisher templates from Templates on Office Online. Save the
templates you create or download them to the Publisher 2003 template
directory and then display them in the New Publication task pane.
New publication type:
Users can now
create CD and DVD labels.
Personal Stationery Sets:
The New Personal Stationery Sets include an address label, letterhead,
and matching envelope.
Greeting Cards and Invitations:
This featured has
been improved and lets users create greeting cards and invitations for
personal and business use. Publisher 2003 includes an extensive
collection of new, professionally designed greeting cards and
invitations with combinations of verses, layouts, colors, and designs.
If Publisher 2003
was still in development today, what would you do differently or change,
now that you've seen the product released?
excited by the customer feedback we've received so far on Publisher
2003. The Publisher team worked extensively to develop a product that
truly addresses customers' pain points related to the creation of sales
and marketing materials, in-house. There are always more features and
revisions we’d like to make to a product, but overall we’re very happy
with Publisher 2003. So far, we've heard some powerful testimonials from
customers regarding their use of Publisher. For instance, Oregon-based
Timbercon achieved a cost savings of $72,000 by creating marketing
materials in house using Publisher 2003.
development of this product were there any hilarious or outlandish moments
which stick out in your mind?
I asked this
question to the Publisher program manager lead. His most outlandish
moment had to do with the then Publisher General Manager on stage in
Fargo, North Dakota dressed as a cow to help bridge cross-cultural
What does Publisher
2003 have over its competitors? (Adobe InDesign/PageMaker, etc.)?
designed with the business user in mind, rather than a professional
designer. This makes it easy for small business customers to use
Publisher to create their own sales and marketing materials, in-house.
Publisher 2003 is
differentiated from other offerings based on the following:
Professional design guidance
provided within the product helps users get started creating
publications for print, email and the Web. Design guidance provide
through professionally designed wizards and templates, Color Schemes,
Work smarter and easier with familiar Office tools.
Publisher is an Office application which means it shares many features,
toolbars, user interface, making it easier for Office users to choose to
use Publisher for page layout and marketing-oriented publications,
without having to learn an entirely new program.
Create impressive marketing materials for print, Web and e-mail.
Publisher supports desktop printing, commercial printing, sending
publications as e-mail messages, or converting for use on the Web.
Easily expand your content collection by downloading Publisher templates
and images from Office Online. Seamlessly access and organize them
from within Publisher 2003. Office Online also includes online training,
clip art, assistance articles, and access to 3rd party
Do you feel that
sharing certain Office features such as the Escher tools is holding back
the drawing potential needed to make Publisher a better solution for DTP
No. Publisher 2003
continues to improve and add common desktop publishing features
(Publisher 2003 added Baseline Alignment, Baseline Guides, improved
guides, multiple master pages, and more) and has a robust set of drawing
tools. The ability to use shared Office features, such as Escher, makes
it easier for customers to use these tools across the various Office
programs and allows the Publisher team to focus on other areas of the
product designed to meet customer needs. Publisher 2003 is more than a
desktop publishing program; it’s really a business publishing and
marketing materials program that helps small businesses bring more of
their marketing activities in-house – print, Web and e-mail activities.
Why is there a lack
of Microsoft Press books for Publisher 2002/Publisher 2003? Are there any
continually evaluates their lineup based on customer demand. Third party
books are available for Publisher 2002 and Publisher 2003.
promoting the Microsoft Office Communities within the Office products
extensively. Do you think the Microsoft Publisher MVPs had a role in the
overall development of Publisher 2003, and do you expect to look for their
expertise in future versions of Publisher?
MVPs have played a role in features in several versions of Publisher and
we will continue to look to them to provide value feedback and customer
insight and play an even larger role as we develop future versions of
In a broad sense,
where do you see the future of Publisher heading?
Again, we're very
pleased with the feedback we have received from customers using
Publisher. This is clearly evidenced by the cost savings associated with
the use of Publisher for the creation of in-house sales and marketing
materials. As far as the future, we are working closely with customers
to further develop the application on based on their needs.
What do you like
most about your job?
There are many
facets I love about my job. I continue to enjoy working with a great
team of talented and passionate individuals. I also continue to be
excited about this application and what it can do for our customers. One
of the most rewarding aspects of my job is to hear how customers are
using Publisher 2003 to solve their business pain points. It’s been
great to see how Publisher is playing a key role in the Office Small
Business Edition 2003 and how it is helping small businesses create
in-house marketing materials. Most importantly, it’s great to see this
really catch up with customers and partners.
Microsoft Publisher Website - Microsoft
Microsoft Publisher 2003 Review - ActiveWin.com
Interested in doing an interview?
contact us for more information.