Every couple of months or so, we have to collaborate at work on a Microsoft Word document and submit it without all the distracting markup in it. And it seems like it always takes four of us half an hour to re-figure out how to accept all changes in Word and remove the comments. This applies to Word 2007 and all newer versions.
Sometimes I also find the tracked changes and other markup causes weird problems, and the fastest way to make them go away is to get rid of the markup.
So I figured it might help someone. This is something that either takes you 30 seconds or 30 minutes. If you don’t do this every day, it’s likely to take too long. This is for those of you who can’t do it in less than 30 minutes. Read more
I had an odd question come up the other day: Who still uses Wordperfect? It’s a fair question. Wordperfect, as you may know, is still very much in production. Corel releases new versions every year or two. It’s the #2 word processor in the market, still. Someone is still using it, then.
Wordperfect is a software classic, especially the old version 5.1 that ran under DOS. For a time, Wordperfect 5.1 was one of the two most famous programs for IBM compatible PCs. The other was Lotus 1-2-3.
Sometimes it’s helpful to be able to find words in all caps in Word. Microsoft Word, that is. This helps you find all the acronyms so you can make sure you spelled them out or explained them properly.
Double-checking acronyms is especially important when writing government proposals, which require you to spell out acronyms on first usage. If you’ve never written a proposal, be glad, smile, and nod. Many acronyms make good index material, so this trick helps when you’re writing an index. Also, acronyms are frequently jargon, so making sure you explain them adequately is just part of good writing. Or, if you’re a fan of high quality typography, you might want to find them all so you can set them in small caps for improved aesthetics and readability.
Calibre, the free e-book management software, hit the magic version 1.0 this past week. That’s not to say the previous versions were unstable, because they weren’t. In the world of open-source software, frequently software doesn’t hit version 1.o until the authors decide that it’s reached a certain level of feature completeness.
A few years ago, Microsoft quietly released a security tool called EMET–the Enhanced Mitigation Experience Toolkit. EMET is now in version 4.0, and it’s probably the best security tool you’ve never heard of. And that’s a real shame.
Modern versions of Windows and modern CPUs include several security-enhancing technologies that aren’t necessarily switched on by default. EMET is a wrapper that forces software to use these technologies, even if they weren’t designed from the get-go to use them. The idea, then, is that if a badly behaving data file tries to exploit a traditional vulnerability in one of these programs, EMET steps in and shuts it down. A real-world example would be if you visit a web page that’s playing a malicious Flash video, or that contains a malicious Acrobat PDF. The malicious data loads, starts to execute, and the minute it misbehaves, EMET slams the browser tab shut. You won’t know right away what happened, but your computer didn’t get infected, either. Read more
For now at least, I edit a lot of security documents as part of my job. Today, I saw something I hadn’t seen before: Word 2010 was hiding all of the headers, footers, and whitespace in the document. That made navigating the document a whole lot faster and easier, but it also meant I couldn’t verify that the headers and footers were correct. I figured out how to hide and unhide whitespace, headers and footers in Microsoft Word.
The solution was simple but non-obvious, and works in all versions of Word that I know of. Read more
A system security document I was editing had blank table of contents entries in Word. This was in Word 2010, but my research indicated it can happen in Word 2007, 2003, and very possibly earlier versions as well.
Since the table of contents is often the first impression of the document, you want to get it right. Many readers will assume that if the table of contents has errors, the rest of the document will too. They may be wrong, but you may not get a chance to prove it.
The particular document I was looking at had two blank entries in the table of contents. When I clicked on the links, they led to the entries right below them in the TOC, making them completely extraneous. Read more
I recently edited a long document whose original author capitalized way too many words. I needed to fix it. To speed up the process, I needed a way to find capitalized words in Word–all of them, and automatically. Then I could make a decision whether the capitalization was appropriate.
Another time you would need to find capitalized words in Word would be when you’re creating an index. I’m sure there are others.
Antivirus vendor Kapersky has identified a new trojan horse targetting Macintoshes. It spreads a botnet based somewhere in China via an infected Microsoft Word document, typically sent as an e-mail attachment.
The spin is that if you don’t use Word on your Mac, you’re safe. That’s true–this week. But going forward, it’s going to take more than that. Read more
I get asked about once a month how to make part of a document landscape in Word, while leaving the rest of the document in portrait. Or how to change one page to landscape in Word. 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.
This is useful when the document contains an image that’s wider than it is tall, and you need to make it fill the page to make it easier to see.
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. Read more