Two enemies, one bullet, which do I shoot?

I learned an important lesson about RTF and MS Word today. The lesson is:

The RTF spec is a "best case scenario". MS Word is the "worst case scenario".

Either the spec is too obscure, leaves out info, wrong, or Word just does not follow the spec. I think all are probably true.

Another lesson for debugging RTF documents that you want to open in MS Word:

If you can't get Word to display your RTF as you want it to, do the same thing manually in Word, save it as RTF, sift through the 80% of the filler crap that Word outputs, and find the actual answer.

What a pain in the ass.

Written on December 19, 2001