If you use MS Word, you know that red lines under text indicate spelling errors and green lines point out grammar errors.
Soon, you’ll start seeing purple lines.
They are highlighting “potentially offensive words and phrases” to help you write more inclusively by suggesting alternatives that are less likely to offend.
I’m curious how the word “they” will fare. It seems like one way or the other, you’ll either see green or purple.
If you would prefer to turn this new “feature” off, the settings are found under the “Inclusiveness” section of the “Grammar & Refinements” options.
Do so at your own risk. 😐
I wonder if MS Word would have “purpled” anything in this post…
For a printable PDF version, CLICK HERE
Sometimes the smallest computer tip escapes me because I’ve known and used it for so long, but today, I helped someone create a Table of Contents for a document and when I turned on Show/Hide paragraph marks, check out what I saw on the page my client had reserved for the TOC:
I didn’t count the hard returns, but suffice it to say this is NOT the best way to get a new page. In this particular situation, as soon as the Table of Contents is generated and fills the page, ALL those hard returns will have to be deleted.
In the broader scope of document editing, anytime someone presses the Enter key multiple times to get to the next page, all those extra hard returns will have to be deleted when the document is edited and pagination changes. When this method of getting to a new page is used multiple times throughout a document, editing can easily turn into a circular game of adding and deleting hard returns every time text is added or removed.
Instead of pressing the Enter key over and over and over and OVER again, try pressing the keyboard shortcut “CTRL+Enter” to insert a page break at the location of your cursor.
With the paragraph marks shown, it looks like this:
I’ll address all the unnecessary spaces and tabs after the word ARTICLES in another post.
Historically, I’ve created faux letterhead to be used when letters were to be sent via fax. More recently, they are used for letters to be sent as PDF attachments via email.
The reasoning behind this is to save money on pre-printed stationary letterhead. Economically, there’s no reason to print a letter on this expensive paper when the recipient will never actually touch it.
First, I re-create the content and format of a client’s pre-printed letterhead using the same fonts and layout as the printed version. The goal is that the recipients of these letters won’t notice a difference between the paper letters they receive from a firm via USPS and the letters they receive from the same firm via fax or email.
Continue reading “create faux letterhead for fax and pdf attachments.”
Occasionally, I’ve needed to protect a portion of a Word template from accidental editing. There are many reasons to do this, but one example – the one I’ll be using in this particular #pragmaticcomputertip – is to protect the content and formatting of what I call “faux” letterhead. (Note: This tip applies to MS Word 2007 and later.)
Click HERE to read the previous #pragmaticcopmutertip about creating faux letterhead. After finalizing, it’s a good idea to to be protect that section of the form against accidental editing. Here’s how that’s done:
Continue reading “prevent editing in a Section of a MS Word template/document”
Some people love the clean look of Word 2013, but if you’re like me, it feels cold. and bleh.
The ribbon only displayed when I clicked on a menu item. As soon as I began typing, it would disappear. This was not helpful. I didn’t want to go get the ribbon every time I needed something on it. That ribbon needed to sit and stay.
Here’s how to get your ribbon back: Continue reading ““Where’s the Ribbon in Word 2013?””
I thought I was crazy. My keyboard was typing stuff I did NOT type. Backslashes when I pressed the spacebar. Numbers when I pressed letters and the other way around. Adding characters when I pressed the backspace button. Weirdness. Nothing short of a reboot would solve the problem and even then, it was only temporary. I searched Google and stumbled upon the possibility that my keyboard was no longer set to “QWERTY.”
To find out if your keyboard settings may have changed:
Continue reading “cure your possessed keyboard: dvorak to QWERTY”
If you used Autotext in MS Word 2003 or earlier, it’s one of the first questions you’ll have:
“Does Word still have Autotext?”
The answer? YES.
What’s the next question?
“WHERE is it? I can’t find it anywhere!”
Autotext has been renamed. reorganized. buried. Some refer to it as QuickParts. or Building Blocks. or both. But forget names. Let’s cut to the chase:
Alt+F3 and F3.
“Keystrokes?” the die hard mouse people whine ask?
(To you mouse people, go ahead, use the mouse. Click the “Insert” Ribbon, then click the Quick Parts dropdown, then . . . who am I kidding? I’m not typing up mouse instructions for this. sorry)
For you long time Autotext users, the good news is that Microsoft left in the legacy keystrokes for this feature.
Quick and Easy.
To CREATE an Entry:
1. Select the text you never want to type again, whether you open a document which contains that text or whether you type it from scratch – select it. Continue reading “autotext/quick parts/building blocks.”
In the previous #pragmaticcomputingtip, entitled “automatic random text generation. improved?” I shared a nifty little feature in Word 2007 and 2010 which automated the generation of random text.
Check it out and then come on back and I’ll walk you through you a variation.
no. really. check it out. I’ll wait.
okay, welcome back.
While =rand(p,s) is effective and fun, its use has a potential problem. It generates interesting text. Okay, “interesting” is debatable, but it generates English text that makes sense, which means there’s a potential for distraction.
If you don’t want your reader/learner/audience to focus on the content of your text, there’s another, similar feature that generates nonsensical random text that will keep people focused on the form of your document/website without tempting anyone to read for content absorption. Try this:
Continue reading “automatic text generation. a variation for the easily distracted.”
For YEARS DECADES, I have been creating dummy documents for use in computer training. Usually, I ask someone to type a sentence – any sentence – and then I teach them to use keyboard shortcuts to select, copy and paste their sentence, resulting in a multi-paragraph, multi-page document to work with as I train.
It’s always interesting to see what people type:
the distracted or disinterested: “I can’t wait for lunch.”
and the suck-ups: “The computer trainer is really good!” (umm hmm)
and of course, the ever popular: “The quick brown fox jumped over the lazy dog.” frequently makes an appearance.
I’ve written about that third sentence before in a previous post entitled “automatically generate placeholder text in Microsoft Word“. You could automatically generate paragraphs composed of it using Word 2003 and earlier versions using a little known “=rand()” feature in Microsoft Word.
But now, with Word 2007 and 2010, it’s even better.
Check this out. Open either Microsoft Word 2007 or 2010 and, at the top of a new, blank document, type this:
Then press the enter key.
What just happened? Continue reading “automatic random text generation. improved?”