December, 2009

  • Preparing and optimizing screenshots and photos for Office and the Web

    If you're not using the Microsoft Office Picture Manager, you're leaving a powerful image editing tool on the table that's included free with Office 2007. When you take screenshots to illustrate your Word and PowerPoint documents, sure, you can simply...
  • Macros Made Easy - Your first macro

    No, wait, don't run away! Even though they're based on Visual Basic for Applications (VBA), there's no actual programming required . Macros are easy to create and can save you lots of time. Promise. Think of macros as shortcuts to doing the things in...
  • Macros Made Easy - Removing hyperlinks in Excel

    Macros Made Easy - Removing hyperlinks in Excel Ever wanted to quickly get rid of all hyperlinks in a Microsoft Excel document? Here's how. First, be sure you have the Developer tab turned on in Excel. To add it, go the Microsoft Office Button at the...
  • Using OneNote during meetings

    I once had a manager who carried around a steno pad. He wrote frequently in that steno pad in a very, very small script. He was proud that he’d had the same notebook for years. It was his symbol. Something like the guy with the stapler in the movie Office...
  • Prepare Office documents for download with the Document Inspector

    Before you publicly share a Microsoft Office document (e.g., a Word file offered for download on your public Web site), you should use the Document Inspector to ensure there are no hidden comments, invisible images, or personal information. Your first...
  • Excelling at Excel - Importing from Word documents

    If you have a Word document that you want to import into Excel, first save your Word document as text. From the Microsoft Office Button at top left, select Save As , Other Formats and in the Save As Type box choose Plain Text (*.txt) . Once you've saved...
  • Use OneNote as a calculator

    In an old-fashioned notebook or its ad hoc after work alternative, the napkin, if you want to work out a non-trivial math problem you have to carry the one and enter the decimal point all by yourself. But OneNote is a notebook backed by the power of a...
  • Track changes in Word without the mess

    If you've ever reviewed a Word document for someone, you know how those track changes revision marks can be distracting. If you make more than a few edits, the mishmash of different colored text, strikethroughs, and formatting notes can make it hard to...
  • Excelling at Excel - Pulling apart long lists quickly using text functions

    Have you ever spent time pulling apart elements from one text field in Excel to break them into separate text fields? If your data is stored in predictable chunks—a product SKU list for instance—you can save a lot of time by using simple text functions...
  • Favorite OneNote tips

    I meet people who’ve seen the OneNote icon and have never clicked on it. After they see what they can do with it, it doesn’t take long for OneNote to become one of their favorite applications. Last week, I shared some tips for efficiently taking and organizing...
  • Making effective PowerPoint slides

    PowerPoint is a great tool. But like any tool, it can be misused. Ever hit your thumb with a hammer? I remember when people first started using PowerPoint in their presentations. Some of the presentations were almost dizzying. I’ve seen some where the...
  • Use custom styles to make formatting changes swiftly

    When you're creating complex structured documents, you may need to alter a specific style during or even at the end of the content creation process. Good planning can make this a simple task rather than a headache earned during a long night of menial...
  • Excelling at Excel - Importing Web pages into spreadsheets

    You've probably noticed that if you copy Web pages into Excel spreadsheets, the program tries to collect page elements from tables and lay them out for your use. It does a pretty good job, but there's a better way to do this. Open the workbook sheet where...
  • Reveal what's really going on in Word

    If you've ever grappled with a formatting issue in Microsoft Word - say, a bullet that just won't line up where you want it - you've no doubt wondered, "Just what is going on in this document?!" Did you know there's an easy way to view the invisible...
  • Excelling at Excel - Storing numbers that are longer than Excel allows

    Have you ever pasted a number into Excel and watched it turn into something like this: That's not terribly useful if you're storing a product ID or tracking number in a spreadsheet. Worse, it changes the number itself if it exceeds 15 characters. 123456789012345678...
  • Technical presentations from A to Zzz

    Some presentation topics are naturally more interesting than others. For example, it’s much easier to entertain when introducing a splashy new product than giving a technical talk about how it actually works. Still, technical presentations are incredibly...
  • Macros Made Easy - Assigning shortcuts after the fact

    To add a shortcut key combination or toolbar button later if you didn't assign one when you created your macro, don't go to the Macros button. Instead, go the Microsoft Office Button at the upper left of your open document, click Word Options, and then...
  • Browsing through OneNote

    If you've written large team or personal notebooks in OneNote, there are times you want to move beyond search and interact with your notes as though, well, they were a real notebook. Don't worry, you can! The quickest way to do this is using the OneNote...
  • Fix up a Word document quickly

    Yesterday we looked at hidden formatting and shared a quick tip to search and replace double spaces using the Find and Replace tool. But what if what you want to replace is not a character but the formatting itself? No problem. In your Find and Replace...