Friday, December 31, 2010

Notepad in the Cloud by Dick Evans

I was looking for a way to enter text on a Web enabled cell phone so I could take notes while I am out and about. My old PDA had a version of Word on it and I got very used to being able to pull it out of my pocket and type a note. Many of the newer cell phone have nice slide out QWERTY keyboards, but no apps to use. The keyboard is for texting and updating contacts. I wanted more.

A couple of useful cloud apps allow you to take notes and keep a things to do list. I have talked about the to do list before and that Site is No need to explain it. Just open the site and start your list. You have to register, but there is no cost.

The other one I just located is a notepad in the cloud. The site is It too is free. When you open the site you are presented with a blank page. Just start typing. It is being saved using the URL in your address bar generated by the site. You have the option of changing the name at the bottom of the page. You can also password protect the page or share it with the world.

I typed this post using You can locate it at

Back to the cell phone. I do not have a slide out keyboard on a data enabled phone. I assume one could simply go to either of these Web sites and work using the cell phone just like I have done on my notebook. How about giving them a test on your data enabled cell phone and tell me how it works?

Friday, December 17, 2010

Paste Options

When pasting text into a Word document, the Paste Options button displays and you have to go to the mouse and click it to choose the option you want. Well, usually I want to use Keep Text Only. There is a way to use the keyboard to select the option and keep your hands off the mouse.

Instead of Ctrl+V to paste the copied text, use Ctrl+Alt+V. A dialog box displays with three options and the second one is the equivalent of Keep Text Only. So, press the down arrow key once, and then press Enter.

Your hands never have to leave the keyboard and after doing it a few times it quick to use. Give it a try.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Another Word Shortcut?

I wish I could say I know all the shortcuts available in Microsoft Office. But, I do not even know all the visible buttons on the ribbons! Every once in a while I stumble upon something I have not used before. This time it is a shortcut to clear all formatting from a selected area.

Copy/Paste works great, but when what has been copied contains formatting and links and color we may want to clean it up for use in our new document. Sure, we can click the Paste Options button and select Keep Text Only. But that removes everything except text, even the images we may have wanted.

Now we could also select Match Destination Formatting from the Paste Options button. But, that makes the style of the character match the current document. It does not remove any links and actually changes them to be default, underlined blue. All images do remain.

Next time try this out. Paste the selected material to your document. Select it and then Ctrl+Spacebar. All formatting is removed and the images remain. Also, if any of the selected area was centered or aligned right, it remains that way.

Another useful shortcut is Shift+Ctrl+C and Shift+Ctrl+V. This is the equivalent of the Format Painter button on the ribbon except it does not disappear after using it. Yes, you can double-click the format painter button to have it stay on and press it again to turn it off-or Esc.

Simply click in the text with formatting you want to use elsewhere and press Shift+Ctrl+C. Now select text elsewhere and press Shift+Ctrl+V to paste the format to the selected text.

All the shortcuts I talked about in this article work in the previous versions of Word as well as the latest, Word 2010.

Thursday, December 02, 2010

Change Normal Template in Word 2007

When I use Word 2007 I don’t care for the default settings in the Normal template—the default when you start a new document. I prefer the Word 2003 normal settings, but I do like the 1.15 line spacing. What do I do? Usually I start a new document and click No Spacing before starting. This gives me the spacing I like, even though it keeps the font and font size from 2007.

I have always known I could change the Normal template to be what I preferred, but never got around to it. Then I read an article on TechRepublic that reminded me of what I wanted to do and showed me step by step how to get it done.

To read the article and change the Normal template to your personal preferences, see