Definition

compound document

In information technology, a compound document is an organized collection of user interfaces that form a single integrated perceptual environment. A compound document includes a data structure that contains different data types, such as text, audio files, and motion video files. A compound document is also an application environment containing program objects that can be interlinked and interacted with by a user.

Compound documents can be formed of information parts that originate from different sources and that are assembled on the fly. Microsoft's Internet Explorer desktop uses the compound document concept. Microsoft's Object Linking and Embedding is a framework for assembling and managing compound documents. OpenDoc is an alternative standard.

This was last updated in April 2005

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