From the Kenosha News on 7-2-06

Tips make using MS Word more efficient

Just typing in MS Word is a pretty straightforward thing, but there are many features that you might not be aware of and some features that you might rather turn off! Below are several tips to help you overcome some frustrations and use the software more efficiently.

If the “paper clip guy” (Office Assistant) is annoying you, you can turn him off as follows:

  1. Click on the Help menu, then on Microsoft Word Help. Click the Options button.
  2. Uncheck all of the boxes except “Respond to F1 key” and “Move when in the way.”
  3. You may choose an alternate assistant – like a wizard, a robot, or a smiley – by clicking on the Gallery tab and using the arrow button to scroll through the options.
  4. Click OK, then close the office assistant by right-clicking on him and selecting Hide.
  5. If you want to bring him back, click the Help menu then select Show the Office Assistant.

If you don’t like seeing the red and green wavy lines that indicate spelling and grammar errors as you type, you can turn those off by clicking on the Tools menu, selecting Options, and then clicking the Spelling and Grammar tab. Uncheck the boxes for “Check spelling as you type” and “Check grammar as you type.” Click OK.

If when you are highlighting text, Word goes overboard and scrolls way too fast, try this instead: Click to place your cursor at the beginning of the section you want to select. Using your scroll bar at the right, scroll down to the end of the section you want to select. Hold down the Shift key and click once at the end of the selection. The whole section should be highlighted.

If you want to select one line of text, click in the left margin immediately to the left of that line. If you want to select a paragraph, click twice in the left margin next to it. Clicking three times in the left margin will select the whole document. Double-click on a specific word to highlight it.

Some times you want to fit all the text you can on a page. To use the minimum margins allowed by your printer, click the File menu then click Page Setup. Click the Margins tab. Enter 0 for all of the margin settings. Click OK and when prompted, click the Fix button to have Word insert the correct settings automatically.

If you normally put a blank line between your paragraphs, you can save space and keystrokes by using paragraph spacing.

  1. Select o place your cursor in the paragraph above or below which you want to add the space.
  2. Click the Format menu and click Paragraph.
  3. In the Spacing section, enter a number in the Before or After boxes. The spacing is measured in points – the same measurement used for font sizes – so 6 points would be about a half line for a 12 point font.
  4. Click OK.

By Carol Sabbar from the Kenosha News on 7-2-06