Archive | March, 2013

In a hurry? Take a shortcut!

29 Mar

No time to research and write a tip this week so… In a hurry? Take a shortcut!

  • WIN + D: Minimize all open windows and display the desktop
  • WIN + D: Maximize all minimized windows (it’s a toggle)

I like to take this opportunity to wish you all a very happy Easter!

Tame your computer – play with pop up video

24 Mar

As you may be aware, you can quickly turn words or pictures or cells in, say, Word, PowerPoint or Excel, into a ‘hyperlink’ to a website, without having to copy and paste the URL from the browser’s address bar. (See if you don’t know how.)

But what do you do if you want to link to a YouTube video, and don’t want to display all the distracting bits and comments on the page? Or,  like some of last week’s PowerPoint course participants wanted to do, add a link on a slide that automatically opens the video, as if it was an integral part of your presentation?

Here’s how:

  1. Right-click the YouTube video you want to link to and select Copy video URL.
  2. In your document or presentation right-click the text, picture or cell you want to turn into the link and select Hyperlink.
  3. In the Insert Hyperlink dialogue box, paste the video’s URL you copied in step 1. (CTRL+V anyone?)
  4. Replace the watch? part of the URL by watch_popup.
  5. Click OK.


Tame your computer – learn your lines

16 Mar

Out of the box, Word counts the number of pages and words in your document and automatically displays the information in the bottom left corner of Word’s Status Bar. You can add other useful facts such as “line numbers”, “sections” or – my favourite – (as without it, it’s a nightmare to spot whether it’s on or off) “track changes”. (See if you missed this tip.)

But what if you want to display and/or print the line numbers to the left of each line of text, which could be particularly useful for legal documents?

Here’s how:

  1. If your document is divided into sections and you want to add line numbers to the entire document, select all the text. (Remember CTRL+A?)
  2. On the Page Layout tab, in the Page Setup group, click the Line Numbers button.
  3. Select Continuous.

If you prefer, you can restart the line numbers on each page or following section breaks or you can suppress the numbers for a particular paragraph. To remove the line numbers, simply repeat step 1 and 2 and select None.

By the way, did you know that you can save yourself lots of time – not to mention extra work with your computer mouse and the possibility of associated repetitive-strain injury (RSI) – simply by learning some simple keyboard shortcuts? For example – SHIFT+F3 in Microsoft Word means you can toggle between UPPER CASE, lower case and Sentence Case. Or ALT+TAB allows you to quickly switch between running programs. Well, earlier this month we launched a new ‘shortcut of the week’ feature on our website, in an effort to help you work faster (and healthier). Keyboard shortcuts may sometimes be unintuitive or hard to remember, but we will drip feed a new shortcut weekly, to help you to boost productivity without reaching for your mouse. If you are unsure about any of the shortcuts, please do not hesitate to get in touch. You can find the shortcut on our home page – and don’t forget to come back every week to learn a new one.

Tame your computer – change your view

4 Mar

Out of the box, Outlook 2010 displays the Navigation Pane, Reading Pane, To-Do Bar and People Pane, giving you quick and easy access to your required information.

If you think this look is too cluttered, you can quickly free up space using the Reading button (the one resembling a book) in the Status Bar, next to the Zoom slider, which will instantly minimize the Ribbon, the Navigation Pane and the To-Do Bar to give you a cleaner – and perhaps easier – interface.

But what if you want to customise your view and change it for all your mail folders?

Here’s how:

  1. On the View tab, hide or minimise the various Layouts and/or People Pane.
  2. Click on the Change View button on the View tab (the very first button on that tab).
  3. Click on the Apply Current View to Other Mail Folders button.
  4. Select specific folders or click on the Apply view to subfolders check box to apply the view to all subfolders.
  5. Click OK.

With special thanks to Verity Sharratt of Woodbridge School for the inspiration of this week’s tip!