Re: "Out of memory" error in Word 2004 opening Windows .rtf file


OK, that all makes sense. RTF is a good policy when you are sending stuff
off into "the void" because it was specifically invented by Microsoft to
enable its applications to exchange fully-formatted documents with ANY other

That said, Bob and Elliot are correct, if you use RTF you will always find
"something" that won't round-trip correctly (and you just did ...)

RTF is built on the premise that the receiving application should interpret
what it can and ignore the rest. The originating application should encode
what it can. And leave any code it doesn't understand unchanged in the file.
This causes RTF to degrade "gracefully".

PC Word RTF is now two levels ahead of Mac Word RTF, so there are things PC
Word can put in a file that Mac Word can't interpret. However, they should
not cause errors, Mac Word should simply ignore them.

Bob and Elliott are correct that "Out of memory" in this case usually means
"The converter I am looking for is not in memory" which usually is because
it's not even installed :-) Likely suspects in an Academic environment are
vector graphics such as Visio, bits of MathType or possibly scrunched


On 21/10/06 6:37 AM, in article
1161376643.375871.302050@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx, "tharpold@xxxxxxx"
<tharpold@xxxxxxx> wrote:

The message is _usually_ misleading. It isn't the same as an "insufficient
memory" error, but typically indicates that the program is attempting to
locate something it can't find (because that 'something' is "out of [i.e.,
'not in'] memory").

Then, perhaps she did something silly like pasting something into the
document that her copy of Word treats as a reference to a resource on
her computer, another file, or the like? I will ask her to send me the
file in .doc format, but would that still clear up the out-of-place

Not to chastise, but Why RTF in the first place? I'm sure someone {like John
McGhie} will be along with more explicit technical insights, but suffice it
to say that you're basically going from A to B to C then back to A... Next,
your colleague is reversing the the process. Something is bound to get
tangled in the translations.

I'm a professor in an academic department with a wide mix of OSes (Mac
OS, Windows of several versions, UNIX), word processing applications
(pretty much everything), and, I'm sorry to say, *widely* varying
levels of technical expertise.

RTF was decided upon as the best solution to deal with the tendency of
faculty and staff to unthinkingly send off files in one-or-another
format that cannot be read by another person's computer, causing all
sorts of delays and misunderstandings. I know that she is using Word,
but we've exchanged documents in .rtf because that's the policy --
which has, oddly, worked perfectly well for me for several years until

Out of curiosity, though, are you attempting to open by dbl+click or using
File>Open from within Word? If not the latter, try that & see if it makes a

File>Open produces the same error.



Please reply to the newsgroup to maintain the thread. Please do not email
me unless I ask you to.

John McGhie <john@xxxxxxxxxxx>
Microsoft MVP, Word and Word for Macintosh. Business Analyst, Consultant
Technical Writer.
Sydney, Australia +61 (0) 4 1209 1410