Tag Archives: Page Layout

How to justify text in Publisher 2013

I couldn’t figure out how to justify text in Publisher 2013, but I finally found the way. Here’s how.

I did some layout in Publisher 2013 after having not done page layout in a decade or more, and Publisher 2013’s interface confused me a bit. I finally found two ways to justify text.

The fast, easy way: Highlight the paragraph you want and press CTRL-J. Done. I love keyboard shortcuts. Justify starts with “j,” so that makes the keyboard shortcut pretty easy to remember.

The harder, slower way: In the paragraph tab, click the down arrow in the lower right corner. In the “Indents and Spacing” tab, there’s a dropdown box called “Alignment.” Select “Justified,” then click “OK.” Scout’s honor, I looked past that option at least 17 times.

Oddly enough, once I used full justification, then I got a little icon in the paragraph section of the ribbon for that, but I’m 100% certain that option wasn’t there before.

Pro tip: If you’re going to justify text, make sure you enable hyphenation. Click inside the text box, then click “Format” under “Text Box Tools” under the ribbon. Justified text looks much better when hyphenation is on. Hyphens reduce the number of spaces the computer has to insert. Fewer spaces mean fewer “rivers” in the text, and that makes for a better-looking page. Here’s more on hyphenation if you’re curious.

Landscape part of a Word document

I get asked about once a month how to set make part of a document landscape in Word, while leaving the rest of the document in portrait. In Microsoft Word, it’s not difficult, but it’s anything but obvious. Here’s how to landscape part of a Word document, whether it’s one page or multiple pages.

There are buttons on the ribbon to switch between portrait and landscape. But they switch the whole document, not your selection or the page you’re on. I’m sure you have already tried that. Here’s how to switch it for part of the document.
Continue reading Landscape part of a Word document


I accomplished two things yesterday. The first was to set up an experimental Squid Web cache at work. Then I left to go edit video. How nice of me. I hope it held up all day, but I suspect it didn’t have any problems. Linux is awfully reliable.

Mandrake makes it really nice. Basically you do a server install, then once it’s up and going, issue three commands and you’ve got a Web cache. I guess I ought to document what those three commands are, huh? I think they’re written down at work.

The system requirements are steep; you need lots of memory and lots of disk space

And now that I’ve had one, I want another one in my other office. There’s a 133 MHz Power Mac sitting over there with a big disk and a ton of RAM. It’s not useful for running Mac apps because it’s too slow. I think I’ll grab a PowerPC distribution of Linux, install it, grab Squid and compile it, and set it up for over there. Squid needs memory and a good disk subsystem much more than it needs CPU power, and this Mac has both. And I understand Linux loves RISC, so I suspect this’ll make a nice Squid server.

I also spent 7 hours learning how to edit video. This after a half-day at work. I’m emerging from the zone–I’m very difficult to work with because I’ll zone in, forget about my surroundings, and totally lose track of time and other things like food, drink, and rest. It’s almost totally like my body shuts down and it’s just my mind and my hands. Now I’m back, and it’s catching up with me, and sooner than I expected. It must mean I’m getting old.

At any rate… What I learned is that editing video with modern equipment is very easy. Stringing video clips together is as easy as stringing words together. After about four hours’ instruction, I was good enough to put together video that looks outstanding to the untrained eye. Making it look good to the trained eye will take another seven hours’ training and years of experience. I can get the training pretty easily.

Raw skills can be taught, and I guess I had some of them already. I already knew the Mac and I knew page layout, and video layout uses a lot of the same concepts (not to mention keystrokes). Some things have to be developed, and some things you’re pretty much born with. It’s too soon to know how much I lack is developmental and how much is innate.

I think it says something that I don’t even know what equipment we were using–I just ignored everything but the key commands used for stringing together video. I think that’s part of the secret. Pay no attention to the things you don’t need now. You can always learn them when you need them. Master the things you need now. Better to be A-plus at what you need to know now than C-plus at everything, including things you’ll never use and the things you need now. So what if you don’t know much? At least you know something.

And I know this: I want to do this on a PC.


Leading off, some baseball news. Baseball and network execs are puzzled over why this was the lowest-rated World Series ever. (Story here.) Could it be that no one’s interested in watching $200 million worth of spoiled brats from New York throw temper tantrums? Nah, couldn’t be.

Baseball needs a Cinderella story. Bad.

Athlons are dirt cheap. Don’t buy one. Dan Seto noticed and mentioned that AMD Athlons are now cheap as dirt, at least compared to their once-stratospheric levels. He cited a 1 GHz Athlon for $320. So I hopped on the Web, and sure enough, you can easily find one in the $300 range. Some of the bottom-feeder vendors are selling them for as little as $260.

The rest of the lineup? 700/$99, 750/$108, 800/$129, 850/$146, 900/$166, 950/$224.

Remember, though, before you rush out to buy a supercheap gigahertz CPU, that CPU speed is but one factor in performance. Match it up with a video card that treats you right, and with a sound card that isn’t going to suck up all your CPU cycles (the SB Live! MP3+ is an outstanding inexpensive choice), and most importantly, with a hard drive that doesn’t hold you back. If you’re building a performance system, particularly one that’ll be running Linux, NT, or W2K, give serious thought to a SCSI disk. You’ll be happier with a SCSI-equipped 700 MHz system than with an IDE-equipped GHz system.

If money were no object, here’s what I’d get today and why (then I’ll tell you why I still wouldn’t buy it, even if money were no object):

  • Asus A7V mobo — most stable Athlon board available, and every time I buy something other than an Asus I regret it later
  • AMD Thunderbird 1.2 GHz — strictly for braggin’ rights
  • 256 MB Crucial PC133 RAM — Micron memory, the best in the business
  • Adaptec 29160 Ultra160 SCSI PCI host adapter — hey, it’s Adaptec
  • Seagate Cheetah X15 18GB 15K RPM hard drive — Who cares about drive size? This bad boy has a 3.9 ms seek time, a 4-meg buffer and 15,000 rpm spindle speed. It’ll heat my apartment, it’ll wake up my neighbors, but I won’t wait on it (much).
  • Plextor UltraPlex Wide 40X CD-ROM — I love my Plextor drives
  • Plextor 12X CD-R with Burnproof — no coasters with this drive
  • Sound Blaster Live! Platinum — same as the MP3+ but with a nice front-mounted breakout box for my audio gear
  • 3Com 3CR990 NIC — this is the coolest NIC on the market, far and away. It has an onboard processor that handles much of the TCP/IP encapsulation itself, freeing CPU cycles. Same principle as 3D acceleration on your video card and DirectSound acceleration on your sound card. A hundred bucks, but probably worth every cent. Nobody seems to know about it, so I’m telling you.

I wouldn’t worry so much about the video card. My two-year-old STB Velocity 128 frankly is enough card for most of what I do. I suppose I’d get an nVidia GeForce256-based model of some sort. Since the nVidia Riva128 chipset has long since been sent to the gulag, the value chipset is the TNT2. Hot tip if you’re building a value PC: I’m seeing Creative Labs OEM TNT2-based cards for $60, and that’s more than enough card for all but the most die-hard gamer.

Amazingly, you could have this system for well under $3,000. I figured buying the best of everything would run into the $4500 range easily.

I suspect AMD slashed prices precisely because this is a good time to wait and they don’t want you to. Those in the know know that the AMD 760 chipset, which supports DDR SDRAM (basically 266 MHz SDRAM) comes out this week, so anything available today is old hat. This isn’t the multiprocessor AMD 760MP though — we’re looking at January for that. Sorry.

So why not buy now and replace the motherboard later? The 760 introduces a newer, faster front-side bus. If you want to exploit its full potential, you need a new CPU. No one is going to want these old ones now.

I spent a good part of the weekend working on an article. Essentially, I’m distilling chapter 2 of Optimizing Windows into a 3,000-word piece. That’s hard. The tips fit into that, but with very little explanation and very little flair. So much for the difference between it and every other “21 Ways to Speed Up Windows” article, except mine may be more complete for lack of explanation and flair.

Some argue they don’t want flair. They’re lying. Without flair, it reads like an economics textbook. Without explanation, you haven’t done anyone much good.

The line I really don’t want to lose: “I hate screen savers. I hate them so much, when I was once invited to make an appearance on a US television program called The Screen Savers, I turned them down.” Then I go into explaining why screen savers are the cause of everything wrong with the world today.

I was at 3,600 words Saturday, down to about 3,200 by Sunday afternoon. I can cut the two least important tips, leaving 20, and be at 2946, which might leave room for some screenshots. I’m half tempted to ask him if I can do the page layout for this thing as well… That’s not likely, but worth asking.