I am a very satisfied user of Office 2010 and so I decided to pass on this very useful list of 10 tips and tricks recently published by PC Magazine.
ARTICLE: Microsoft Office 2010: 10 Tips and Tricks
Learning a few tricks for Microsoft Office 2010 can greatly improve your efficiency. Here are ten of our favorites, ranging from keyboard shortcuts to ways to keep tabs on your social networks.
Open Recently-used Files With Two Keystrokes
In older versions of Office, the File menu always displayed your recently-used documents, which you could open by typing Alt-F1, then the number of the document on the list (1 for the most recent, 2 for next most recent, etc.). This feature isn’t turned on by default in Office 2010, but you can activate it by entering the Backstage view, selecting Recent, and adding a checkbox next to “Quickly access this number of recent documents.” Change the number to whatever number of documents you want to see on the list. In the Recent Documents list, you can “pin” a document to the list so that it will always appear, even if you haven’t opened it recently. A nifty new feature lets you “pin” entire folders to the list of Recent Places in the right-hand column on the menu.
Add A Redaction Tool to Word
Unlike Adobe Acrobat and Corel WordPerfect, Word doesn’t come with a built-in redaction tool, which means that you can’t permanently hide text in a Word document. Still, you can add that functionality to Word 2010’s Review tab by installing the Word 2007 Redaction Tool. It’s the work of a Microsoft engineer, but isn’t officially supported by Microsoft (which means there’s no guarantee it works). Be careful when you use this tool—when text is replaced by a black box, you can’t press Ctrl-Z to reverse the redaction.
Do Everything With The Keyboard
Office’s Ribbon interface looks as if it’s designed for the mouse, but you can fight carpal tunnel syndrome and other wrist problems by using the keyboard instead. Tapping the Alt key causes boxed letters to appear on all the Ribbon’s tabs, and boxed numbers to appear on the Quick Access. For example, type “H” and the Home tab opens, complete with boxed letters (and a few sequences of two letters like FN and PG) that you can press to access all the features on the tab. Galleries—like the gallery of styles on the Home tab—have letters located on the scroll bar to their right. You can type “L” for Styles on the Home tab, and tap the appropriate letter to open the gallery, so you can navigate it with the arrow keys. Type Alt again to exit this mode when you’re done.
Customize The Ribbon
Office finally lets you rearrange the Ribbon the way you want by clicking the File tab to go to Backstage, selecting Options, and then Customize Ribbon. In the right-hand column, you can create a new tab or a new group on an existing tab, remove or rearrange items already on the Ribbon by selecting them in the right-hand column, or select items that you want to add from the list on the left. Long-term Office users may want to use the “Commands not on the ribbon,” function because you can now add a command that you used in older versions of Word that nixed from the Ribbon due to lack of demand. Note: A button the lower right lets you export your customizations to other Office setups.
Open documents that Office wants to block
In Office 2007, if you tried to open a document created in very old versions of Office—as far back as Word 95 or Excel 4.0 or earlier—Office 2007 displayed an error message and refused to open it (Microsoft decided that old documents posed a security risk). Office 2010, fortunately, makes it easy to override those blocks. In Word or Excel, go to File, Options, Trust Center, click Trust Center Settings, then select File Block Settings, and remove the checkmarks from the older Office files that you want Office 2010 to open.
Print Only One page of an Outlook Message
Other Office apps let you print the current page (or one or more numbered pages) directly from the Print menu in Backstage view by clicking the down arrow next to the Print All Pages button to see the page-range options. Outlook doesn’t offer those options on its Print menu; instead, you must click the tiny Print Options button on the Print menu, then select a Page Range option.
Integrate Social Networks Into Outlook
Outlook’s “Social Connector” feature lets you integrate LinkedIn updates (Facebook and other social networks slated to appear in the future), but the method for setting this up isn’t obvious. You’ll need to download and install LinkedIn for Outlook. You’ll also have to ignore the warning that details the need to install the Outlook Social Connector (that advice applied only to the public beta of Outlook 2010.) Finally, in Outlook, click the View tab, People Pane, and then the down arrow to access Account Settings and log in.
Make Your Own Quick Steps in Outlook
Outlook’s new Quick Steps feature lets you create one-click (or one-keystroke) e-mail actions. For example, moving a message to a folder you use for archiving messages. You create a new Quick Step by going to Outlook’s Home tab, then clicking Quick Steps, Create New. There you’ll assign a name, shortcut key, and tooltip for your Quick Step, then use the drop down menus to select one or more actions. When you’re done, your new Quick Step will be available from the gallery of Quick Steps in the Home tab, or via a shortcut key.
Create Sparkline Microcharts In Excel
Excel’s niftiest new feature is its “microcharts,” or, to use Microsoft’s branding for them, Sparklines. These tiny bar and line charts occupy a single cell, and represent a row or column of numeric data. You can experiment with these by opening a worksheet that has labels in the left column and numeric data in the remaining columns, inserting a new column between the labels and the data, and then creating a Sparkline (by clicking a cell in the new column, and selecting Insert, Sparklines, and either Line, Column, or Win/Loss). A dialog box opens that lets you enter the range of cells to the right of the selected cell either by typing in the address or selecting the cells in the worksheet itself. Click OK, and your microchart appears in the cell where you started. Use the Design tools on the Sparkline tab in the Ribbon to format the chart to your liking.
Broadcast a Slideshow From Powerpoint
The best new idea in PowerPoint is its built-in broadcast feature, which you can launch by opening a Presentation, clicking File, Save & Send, Broadcast Slide Show, clicking the Broadcast Slide Show button, and then Start Broadcast. The first time you do this, you’ll need to log in to Microsoft’s free broadcast service with a Windows Live ID, but you can choose the option to log in automatically in the future. When the broadcast is ready, the dialog box will display a Send in Email link, which you can use to send an invitation link to your audience (buttons on the ribbon let you send out additional invites). To begin the broadcast, click the Start Slide Show button.
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