(With thanks to Tim Connor for the extension removal code - found at http://www.objectivelabs.com/scripts.php)
This code is a folder action that will take any Word readable file dropped in a folder and save it as plain text. Known to work for sure in Word 2004 running on OS X 10.4.11. I don’t have any other versions to test with. The commands are general enough that it should work for other versions of Word and OS X. This script requires there to be a folder called “Word to Text” within the folder linked to the action.
on adding folder items to this_folder after receiving added_items repeat with i in added_items tell application "Microsoft Word" activate open i without add to recent files set fileName to name of active document end tell try set N to count of characters of fileName if (N > 3) and character (N - 3) of fileName is "." then set fileName to characters 1 thru (N - 4) of fileName set fileName to fileName as text else --there isn't an extension end if end try set fileName to fileName & ".txt" set newFolder to "Word to Text:" set thePath to (this_folder & newFolder) as string set theOutputPath to (thePath & fileName) as string tell application "Microsoft Word" save as active document file name theOutputPath file format format text close active document without saving end tell end repeat end adding folder items to
EDIT: I should note that this will have Word try to open ANYTHING you drop in the folder “ pictures, applications, folders, applescripts, etc. If Word doesn’t immediately recognize the file type, it will give you a box to choose which encoding you want to read something as.