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Tame your computer – dapper deletions

10 Aug

Many many moons ago (in June 2010, see Tip 312) I wrote about a quick way to delete words in Word. As I often encounter people who don’t know this trick and because it also works in Outlook, PowerPoint and even in text fields in Access, I decided to dust the tip off…

  1. Press the DEL (or DELETE) key to delete characters to the right of the insertion point
  2. Press the BACKSPACE key to delete characters to the left of the insertion point
  3. Press CTRL + DELETE to delete the word to the right of the insertion point
  4. Press CTRL + BACKSPACE to delete the word to the left of the insertion point

If you want to delete more than one word simply hold down the CTRL key. For example, hold down the CTRL key and press DELETE three times to delete three words to the right of where your pointer is.

Tame your computer – undo it!

8 Mar

The Microsoft Office go-back-to-where-I-was-happy button (aka Undo) seems to be well-known among most of my course participants. The Undo functionality allows you to reverse one or more operations and restore a document or an e-mail message to its previous state.  It is useful when you find that you have accidentally deleted the wrong text or have performed some other operation that has erroneously modified your document.

But even though the Undo button seems to be the first tool anybody remembers, a lot of people seem unaware you can simultaneously undo or redo a series of edit operations in Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Access. (Why on earth not in Outlook beats me!)

Here’s how:

  1. Click on the down arrow at the right side of the Undo button. (By default the button is located on the Quick Access Toolbar).
  2. Select the desired actions from the list that you want to reverse.

You can also redo actions that have been undone. “Redo” is also great for repeating an action. By the way, only in Excel, you can redo several undone actions at a time, similar to the undoing action described in this tip.

Oh, and for the keyboard shortcut lovers among us:
Press and hold the CTRL key and then press the Z key to undo an action.
Press and hold the CTRL key and then press the Y key to redo an action.

Finally, some useless trivia… You can undo up to 100 actions in Word, Excel and Outlook. By default, you can “only” undo up to 20 actions in Access and PowerPoint. In PowerPoint you can increase that by following the steps as described in Tip #267.

Tame your computer – filter your fancies

11 Jan

Have you ever had the need to print your records in Access in a fancier format than the datasheet view of the Table or Query? If so, you hopefully know about Reports. (If not, book a course! 😉 Not only can you arrange and format the Report’s printout the way you want, but you can also group, sort and include totals and percentages. But there is something else…

Last month one of my “old” course participants and subsequent tip subscriber (Caroline Flood of Arena Structures) told me about the new Report filter options, introduced in Access 2007. Rather than having to base a Report on a Query in order to get a subset of your data, you can now dynamically filter a Report and print off just the information you need.

Here’s how:

  1. Create your Report as normal.
  2. Right-click anywhere in the report and select Report View.
  3. Right-click the text, number or date you want to filter.
  4. Use the pre-defined contextual options from the drop-down list, or build a filter using the Number Filters, Text Filters or Date Filters conditions.

The filtered report can be printed, as normal. To clear the filter, simply right-click the filtered field and select Clear filter. When you close the Report the filter is not saved.