Object Linking & Embedding - OLE
Definition: Object linking and embedding (OLE) is a Microsoft technology that facilitates the sharing of application data and objects written in different formats from multiple sources. Linking establishes a connection between two objects, and embedding facilitates application data insertion. (further reading)
In general, an embedded object is a separate file not created in the program that is placed into the program. For example, when using a word processor program, you paste a movie clip into the word processor document; this would be considered an embedded object. With Microsoft Windows operating systems embedded objects are made possible by using Object Linking and Embedding (OLE).
Using Copy and then Paste Special it is possible to link an object. For example, if you link a graph in an Excel spreadsheet to a Word document, the graph is not stored in the Word file. A link is created so that if the graph or the spreadsheet changes, the Word document is updated too.
A hyperlink is a reference to data that the reader can directly follow either by clicking, tapping, or hovering. A hyperlink points to a whole document or to a specific element within a document. Hypertext is text with hyperlinks. The text that is linked is called anchor text.
Difference Between Embedding & Linking
When the files are linked, then a change in the linked file gets updated in the destination file. In the case of embedding, changes in the embedded file do not propagate to the destination file. You need to manually make the changes in the destination file by double-clicking the embedded file.
- In the case of linking, the data gets stored in the source file and is updated there whenever a change occurs in the linked file.
- You can use linking when you need to make a presentation the next morning but the financial report is still not updated. You can link this report to your presentation. When the report gets updated, it will reflect in the presentation. You want to add a logo to your company’s letterhead but it is still not finalized. You can link it to the letterhead so that the final logo is reflected on the letterhead when completed
- In embedding, the data is stored in your file and any updates in the original source file are not reflected
- You can use embedding You wish to distribute an organization chart in which the role displayed changes according to the recipient