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Archive for the ‘MS Office Help’ Category



Order Up

Friday, February 17th, 2006

Order Up

Have you ever found yourself wishing your toolbar buttons or menus were in a different order?

Maybe their current order just doesn’t work efficiently for you, or maybe you’re used to some other program and would like to make a smooth transition to your new habitat.

Whatever the case may be, if you’re looking for a way to quickly rearrange the “furniture” (that is, the menus and buttons)… Continue reading

File Name Location: A Mystery No More

Friday, February 17th, 2006

File Name Location: A Mystery No More

How much time have you wasted looking for the location of a particular MS Excel file? I mean, you’ve got the printout, but you need to make some changes and can’t seem to remember where it is, let alone what it’s called.

Ever sit back in your chair wishing that you’d thought to write it down on the printout?

What if I told… Continue reading

Same Info – Many Cells

Friday, February 17th, 2006

Same Info – Many Cells

Ever have the same info to enter into multiple cells in MS Excel?

What did you do?

Did you type the data into one cell then copy and paste it everywhere else in the worksheet?

A bit of a pain wasn’t it?

How about a way to get the data into all those cells simultaneously? A method that doesn’t require all the copy / paste… Continue reading

Way Too Small

Friday, February 17th, 2006

Way Too Small

Something unusual happened to me the other day. While researching for an MS Office tip, I did a search through the Office Assistant and had quite a surprise when the information window opened.

What I got was this:

The titles are legible, but for the rest, it’s quite a struggle. Can you read the text?

No?

Well neither could I. The window was normal size, it… Continue reading

Tracing the Path

Thursday, February 9th, 2006

Tracing the Path

Do you use complicated Excel formulas? You know, where a formula references cells that in turn reference other cells. It leads to a big chain reaction of values. One wrong or inadvertent change to a cell’s value and you could cause a multitude of errors in the values reported.

Ever find yourself wondering just where did that value really come from? I mean, which cells in the… Continue reading

Repetition Made Easy

Thursday, February 9th, 2006

Repetition Made Easy

Ever find that you’re looking to repeat the last string of typing you did in MS Word?

Perhaps you have a phrase that needs to be repeated throughout a document, or maybe a repetitious list. Whatever the case, I simply have to ask…what did you do?

Maybe you went the difficult route and retyped the text.

Maybe you highlighted, then copied / pasted the text. That’s definitely… Continue reading

Quick Word Customize Keyboard Trick

Thursday, February 9th, 2006

Quick Word Customize Keyboard Trick

Do you find yourself using a menu item or toolbar button constantly in MS Word?

Does the item/button have a keyboard shortcut?

No?

Do you wish it had one?

Yes? (I thought you might).

If you know how to set custom keyboard shortcuts, then you know about the Tools menu, Customize option and then the searching through the Commands tab looking for the right category… Continue reading

Now, What Was That Key Combination Again?

Thursday, February 9th, 2006

Now, What Was That Key Combination Again?

Ever find yourself trying to remember the key combination for something in one of the menus or toolbar buttons?

Wish you had a quick way to get the program to give you what you’re looking for? (You know, something that doesn’t involve long book searches or keywords).

Well, you’re in luck.

First of all, the menus already display the assigned keyboard shortcuts to… Continue reading

Preserve Formatting in MS Word

Thursday, February 9th, 2006

Preserve Formatting in MS Word

Do you find that you’re frequently disappointed with your copy / paste actions in MS Word? I mean, you just spent all kinds of time beautifully formatting the text only to find that it was stripped of its formatting when pasted?

If you’re using an older version of Word, you probably feel this frustration far more often than you’d like. (Word XP doesn’t behave this… Continue reading

Quick Clicks to Add a New Contact

Friday, February 3rd, 2006

Quick Clicks to Add a New Contact

Is MS Outlook your preferred e-mail program? Do you dread all the typing involved in adding addresses in your address book?

What would you say if you could have Outlook do all that typing for you? Sounds like a good plan to me!

You think so too? I’m so glad to hear it because you’re in luck. With a couple of quick clicks… Continue reading

Mouseless Smart Tags

Friday, February 3rd, 2006

Mouseless Smart Tags

Do you find yourself frequently using Office XP’s smart tags? You know, the little icons that appear in files when the program is offering paste options, or when the AutoCorrect feature started making changes?

If you’ve got them and you use them, you know what I’m talking about.

Anyway, the real question is: “Do you use them less often than you’d like because you need to… Continue reading

Back To The Beginning

Friday, February 3rd, 2006

Back To The Beginning

Over the last year or so, we’ve discussed assigning keyboard shortcuts for several different purposes in MS Word.

By now, some of you may have an incredible list of custom shortcuts. Do you still know what’s what? Or, have you simply created them as we went along then forgotten all about your new handy-dandy keys?

Wish there was a way to start all over? You know… Continue reading

Letter Case Mania

Friday, February 3rd, 2006

Letter Case Mania

Ever find that you’re constantly trying to change the capitalization of words or sentences? What do you do?

Maybe you highlight the word or phrase and retype it.

Maybe you’re the type who only replaces the individual letters that need to be changed. What a headache!

Are you the person who found the Change Case feature on the Format menu? You know, where you get the choices… Continue reading

Just Give It A Nudge

Friday, February 3rd, 2006

Just Give it a Nudge

When working in MS PowerPoint, are you frequently frustrated when you try to move objects just a teensy little bit?

I mean, you’re only trying to nudge the text box or graphic up the smallest amount, but every time you try to drag and drop with the mouse, it’s just too far.

A solution for that predicament certainly would come in handy!

Fortunately I’ve got… Continue reading

Back to the Original

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Back to the Original

Do you use graphics or word art frequently in MS Word?

How many times have you been dismayed to find that you’ve resized an item so many times that it’s looking a bit squashed or stretched, or just plain wrong? I know I’ve hit this point and wished for nothing more than to have the chance to start over.

I’ve tried the Undo feature but usually… Continue reading

Quick Paragraph Relocation in MS Word

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Quick Paragraph Relocation In MS Word

Do you sometimes find yourself highlighting entire paragraphs in a Word document for relocation?

(Keep in mind that anytime you hit the Enter key you’ve finished a paragraph and are creating a new one, so as we discussed yesterday, just keep in mind that “paragraphs” in Word could be as small as a single word in a bulleted list).

What do you do?

I… Continue reading

Did You Know…

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Did You Know…

…that a paragraph in MS Word doesn’t necessarily mean complete sentences and all that other stuff the English teacher taught you?

Well, to Word it doesn’t.

You can be sure that English teachers will disagree, but here’s the scoop.

Word considers a paragraph to be the text between two paragraph marks.

Okay, so I can already hear you asking …paragraph marks?

Yep. They look like this.

Black and White Charts

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Black & White Charts

Yesterday we discussed setting default colors in MS Excel when creating charts, while avoiding all the manual settings we used to complete the task.

But, what happens when you’re going to print the chart and you don’t have a color printer? Or, maybe you do have a color printer but are then going to turn around and copy the chart in black and white.

Ever feel… Continue reading

Custom Chart Colors – Permanently

Friday, January 27th, 2006

Custom Chart Colors – Permanently!

Do you find that when you make a chart in MS Excel that you’re constantly clicking into the chart to change the colors of the bars, lines, etc?

How would you like to change the default colors Excel uses for charts, eliminating all that color switching you’re constantly working on?

Sounds like a good plan to me! I’m always changing those colors so if I… Continue reading

The Magic of F2 in MS Word

Friday, January 20th, 2006

The Magic of F2 in MS Word

When you go to move text in Word, what do you do?

Highlight the text to be moved, then use the mouse to drag and drop it to a new location? Or, do you highlight the text then use the cut / paste options?

Either way, it’s a lot of steps and for many people it involves removing your hands from the keyboard… Continue reading

All By Itself

Friday, January 20th, 2006

All By Itself

If you use Excel to create charts, then I’m sure you’ve noticed that in the last step of the Chart Wizard, you can choose to create your chart on its own page OR as an object embedded in a worksheet with data and other charts.

I’m sure that most of the time we tend to put the chart within a worksheet. That choice tends to give us… Continue reading

Second Sort Criteria in MS Outlook

Friday, January 20th, 2006

Second Sort Criteria in MS Outlook

Most of us know how to sort e-mail messages in Outlook by clicking on the column heading of the field to use as the sort criteria (see today’s Quick Tip above).

An up arrow is sorting messages in ascending order and a down arrow sorts in descending order based on the data in the column you chose.

But did you ever find yourself… Continue reading

The Clickless Presentation

Friday, January 20th, 2006

The Click-Less Presentation

Do you give presentations using MS PowerPoint?

Is it the mouse click you hear over and over again as you advance through your presentation? Or are you constantly reaching to hit a button on the keyboard?

And, let’s talk about moving backward through that presentation. If you’re only trying to move a slide or two back, it’s either to the keyboard you must go or through the… Continue reading

Create It My Way

Thursday, January 19th, 2006

Create It My Way

Do you have settings in MS Excel such as formatting or choices from the Options window that you’re constantly changing because Excel’s blank workbook never seems to have things “the way you left them”? For example, Monday’s setting for accepting labels in formulas. Excel’s default is to not have that option checked.

Wouldn’t it be nice to make these changes just once so that all new… Continue reading

Title Your Columns

Wednesday, January 18th, 2006

Title Your Columns

When you have a title at the top of a column of data, you can use that title in formulas instead of the cell reference.

For example, let’s suppose that you have two columns labeled “Original Price” and “Discount”. Now let’s say you want to create a third column that calculates the sale price of the items (Original Price – Discount).

Your formula for the third… Continue reading

An Update On Updating

Tuesday, January 17th, 2006

An Update On Updating

In the last issue of the MS Office Tips newsletter (Thursday, October 27, 2005), we discussed formulas and using them in MS Word. At the time, my common sense meter must have been a quart or two low, because I simply wasn’t coming up with any of the good ways to get your formulas to recalculate and reflect any changes you’ve made to values.… Continue reading

E-Mail It Quick

Monday, January 16th, 2006

Do you use MS Outlook notes, tasks, calendar, etc? Ever find that you need to take a task or other item and create an email from it?

Here’s a quick way to take all this information from its original location into a new email without a single copy / paste or (banish the thought!) entering the information by hand twice.

Simply select the item that’s to create the email then… Continue reading

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