Six timesaving tips for Word 2007

Unleash the power of Word 2007 with these quick tips

Microsoft Word: The next generation

Microsoft Word: The next generation

Note that Microsoft's terminology here is a little misleading. It doesn't actually find all forms of all words. For example, if you search on "music" and select "Find all word forms," it won't find "musical" or "musician." But if you enter a verb, Word will find all its tenses; if you enter the singular form of a noun, it will find the plural as well; and if you enter an adjective like "good," it will also find "better" and "best."

You can even use this trick to find and replace one term with another -- "run" with "walk," "ran" with "walked," "running" with "walking" and so on. (Rather than choosing Replace All, it's better to review Word's suggestions individually to be sure the correct form is used each time.)

Combined with the new Reading Highlight feature in Word 2007, this makes for a powerful editing tool. For instance, most writers try to avoid using the verb "to be" too often in their work, preferring more active and descriptive verbs (e.g., "runs" rather than "is moving quickly").

Enter "be" as the search term, select "Find all word forms" and click Reading Highlight --> Highlight All. Every use of "is," "was," "has been," "are" and so on will be highlighted, making it easy to pay special attention to them while editing.

3. Work in two parts of a document at the same time

Word's Split View allows you to view and work in two parts of the same document in one screen. This makes cutting and pasting chunks of text from the start to the end of a long document a breeze; adding references or endnotes is also a piece of cake.

You can even keep your outline or table of contents visible in one pane while you work away in the other. Each pane in the Split View can be scrolled independently, so you can move around as much as you need to.

To activate it in Word 2007, simply go up to the View tab, and in the Window area select Split. (In earlier versions of Word, select Window --> Split.) Your cursor will jump to the middle of the page on top of a horizontal "split line," and moving your mouse will move the split line up and down. Find a place where you want to split the page and click your mouse to place the line.

Your document will now be viewed through two independent panes, and you can work in either one. If you don't like where you put the split line, just grab it with your mouse and you can move it around as much as you want.

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