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'[OT][AD] MS Word, was Ideas for books on PIC'
2005\04\06@180852 by Tony Smith

picon face
> -----Original Message-----
> From: spam_OUTpiclist-bouncesTakeThisOuTspammit.edu [.....piclist-bouncesKILLspamspam@spam@mit.edu]On Behalf
> Of William Chops Westfield
> Sent: Wednesday, 6 April 2005 10:29 AM
> To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
> Subject: Re: [AD] Ideas for books on PIC
>
>
> So what do all you authors use for (non-fiction writing) software?  I
> was
> contemplating doing some writing, and found microsoft word (which I
> assumed did everything) to be terribly lacking in things like including
> source code examples and such.  Short of $$$ packages like Framemaker,
> I wound up back at LaTeX, which seems a bit ridiculous even if it does
> have 'wrappers' that make it easier to use than in the old days...
>
> BillW
> --


MS Word isn't lacking, you just didn't look hard enough ;-).  I've 2 words
for you, Fields & Styles.

Fire up Word, click Insert/Field.  Under Categories, click "All" or "Links &
References", then select IncludeText.  Type in your filename.  If you're
keen, look at Options, you can even tell Word to run a text converter on the
linked file in case it's a WordStar v1 file.

Hit Ok, there's your file.  Just like $include.  Hit F9 to refresh if
needed.  Shift-F9 to toggle between showing the field command and the text.

Highlight the field command, Click Format/Styles.  Select Macro Text.  By
default, the formatting will be Courier New, 10 point, mono.  If you're
doing ASM code, you'll need to fix the tabs.  From then on, all your ASM
code will look the same.

While you're fixing the tabs, turn off the Spelling & Grammar check for the
Macro Text style.  Word then won't hassle you with 5 billion alleged
spelling mistakes.

Neat, huh?

One last thing, click Tools/Option/Print.  Under Printing Options, select
Update Links.  This means when you print (even just right-clicking in
Explorer, Word will refresh the fields, meaning the latest source code will
be included.  (You can lock fields to stop this happening.)

Enjoy!

Tony

2005\04\06@192550 by Bradley Ferguson

picon face
On Apr 6, 2005 5:08 PM, Tony Smith <ajsmithspamKILLspamrivernet.com.au> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

I've not written a book, but have given some technical assistance to
those writing books in the past.  I've also used Word for writing
reports, which included figures and images.  In my opinion, it is
lousy for desktop publishing.  Microsoft tries and tries to add more
and more features to bring it to the level of desktop publishing, but
just like the software itself, the files that are produced are quickly
bloated with incompatible formatting unless you are very careful.
It's so nice to be using a computer program where it's faster to
retype something than it is to figure out why Word is moving the
spacing over an eighth inch.

Word is fine for getting your text into the computer and giving hints
to the publisher, but I'd be very careful about fiddling around with
formatting too much in the beginning.  I would say styles are a good
thing, for example, assuming that the latest DTP software can
interpret them.

Also, don't use Excel for charts.  Excel produces the ugliest, most
amatuerish charts and the charts are not fully programmable with VB,
which means you have to fix them by hand.  I would recommend Igor Pro
for producing graphs for publication.  It is fully programmable, you
could probably even make it produce a chart that looks like Excel's if
you wanted to punish yourself.

Bradley

2005\04\06@211753 by Tony Smith

picon face
{Quote hidden}

Styles aren't a good thing, they are THE thing.  If you don't know styles,
you don't know Word.  I have a friend in publishing, her job interviews
start (and often end) with "Name 2 reasons why you'd use styles in Word".
99% failure rate.  She uses Word for the bulk of the work, and Quark for
pre-press.

The whole point of styles is to separate the formatting from the content.
Look at web publishing, what does the S in CSS stand for?  Look at how
PowerPoint handles styles.

Formatting a document should take less than 5% of your time.  Much less if
you're in law or accounting.

The best thing to do in Word is turn off the formatting bar.  You don't need
it.  Use styles.

You know why Word moves thing 1/8th of an inch?  I do.  It's because you
line things up with spaces & then change fonts, hence the spaces get
wider/smaller, or you indent with tabs (often multiple) without setting the
tab stops.  Use paragraph indenting.  Using the correct type of tab helps
too.

Graphic layout sucks somewhat though, which is why you do camera ready stuff
in Quark or something else.  Why do you think Publisher exists?  Because
Word sucks at newsletters.  Publisher does stuff like CMYK and layers (Word
doesn't - Quark does), but won't handle a book.

I've never had a problem with Excel graphs & VBA.  Not sure why you mention
it, but sure, the defaults are ugly, but not hard to fix.  I'd say amateurs
produce amateurish charts.  Try http://www.j-walk.com.  He wrote a whole book on
Excel graphs.  Some are quite pretty.  I do maps in Excel.  More than 32k
data points would be nice though.

Don't forget, the standard operating system in the world isn't Windows,
MacOS or Unix, it's MS Office.

Tony

2005\04\07@071134 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Tony Smith wrote:

>>> So what do all you authors use for (non-fiction writing) software?  I
>>> was contemplating doing some writing, and found microsoft word (which
>>> I assumed did everything) to be terribly lacking in things like
>>> including source code examples and such.  Short of $$$ packages like
>>> Framemaker, ...

>> I've also used Word for writing reports, which included figures and
>> images.  In my opinion, it is lousy for desktop publishing.  

> Styles aren't a good thing, they are THE thing.  If you don't know styles,
> you don't know Word.  

I'm often amazed at how people who didn't figure out Word want to try their
luck with the publishing applications like Framemaker, Quark etc.  If you
don't want to spend the time to figure out how to make Word behave and do
what you want, you probably won't have much luck with these more complex
packages either. Of course they can do things that Word can't, but most of
the complaints are not about things that Word can't do, they are about
things that the person hasn't taken the time to learn how to do. I figure
that the time to learn how to do them with Quark is not less.

I don't do a lot of advertising or newsletter type publishing where complex
page layouts, text flowing through several arbitrarily placed frames or
professional color handling is important. But I write a lot of non-fiction
professional documents, and I have yet to find a formatting challenge that
couldn't be rather easily resolved with Word. If you want to make your life
easy, think a bit about how you want it to look, create the styles, and
work with them.

Sometimes I rework a document created by someone else without using styles.
It's amazing how the visual consistency increases with a bit of thought and
structuring work. If you want people to read your stuff, /thinking/ about a
suitable presentation and actually designing it is not something that
should be neglected. (Yes, that's design work. You may be able to add a
whole new dimension to your documentation by looking at it that way.)

(That's of course not restricted to Microsoft Word. That's the same thing
with any presentation system.)


> Formatting a document should take less than 5% of your time.  Much less if
> you're in law or accounting.

Especially if you find yourself writing similarly formed documents
repeatedly. You can't know how styles makes this easier and the result
better until you've tried it.

Gerhard

2005\04\07@092432 by Tony Smith

picon face
Silly replying to my own post, but there's a tiny bit missing.  When you
enter the filename for the IncludeText field, you need to make path
separators \\, and put quotes around it if it has spaces.

So for c:\my documents\my code.asm, you enter "c:\\my documents\\my
code.asm"

The \ is reserved for options (switches), and of course spaces get treated
as a new command.

Tony


> {Original Message removed}

2005\04\07@093946 by Tony Smith

picon face
I was teaching people Word, Excel & PowerPoint at my last job, about 15
people, 1 hour per week.  I taught them a lot, fast.  After the quick demo
of what you can do with styles, one guys jaw dropped, and he stated that
he'd wasted half his life fiddling with formatting.

I actually quite impressed with PowerPoint, although I hate being on the
receiving end.  I only ever met one other person who knew it.  Learn Styles,
Master slide, Outline view, Layout, Guides, Templates and you're done.

After I taught them Word, I could teach PowerPoint in 30 minutes.

My 5% formatting time is based on new documents.  For lawyer & accountants,
the time is nearly 0%.  They know what format they want, thank you very
much!

PicList must be elite, my usual estimate is 1/1000 know Word.  Here we have
3/2000!

My "No-Bullshit Guide to Office" is progressing...

Tony



> {Original Message removed}

2005\04\07@120825 by Bradley Ferguson

picon face
On Apr 6, 2005 8:17 PM, Tony Smith <spamBeGoneajsmithspamBeGonespamrivernet.com.au> wrote:
> Styles aren't a good thing, they are THE thing.  If you don't know styles,
> you don't know Word.  I have a friend in publishing, her job interviews
> start (and often end) with "Name 2 reasons why you'd use styles in Word".
> 99% failure rate.  She uses Word for the bulk of the work, and Quark for
> pre-press.
>
> The whole point of styles is to separate the formatting from the content.
> Look at web publishing, what does the S in CSS stand for?  Look at how
> PowerPoint handles styles.

I guess I didn't phrase that right.  Yes, I'm all for styles and
templates, etc.  They provide useful meta-data (i.e., hints) instead
of random formatting changes.  I just don't know what the current
level of integration is for Quark these days.  I would assume the
integration would be sufficient, but Microsoft doesn't share their
file formats very readily.

> You know why Word moves thing 1/8th of an inch?  I do.  It's because you
> line things up with spaces & then change fonts, hence the spaces get
> wider/smaller, or you indent with tabs (often multiple) without setting the
> tab stops.  Use paragraph indenting.  Using the correct type of tab helps
> too.

I take great offense at the suggestion that I would try to indent with
spaces or misuse tabs.   I can't think of any examples of this
specifically, but I know I've had major spacing issues with placing
graphs into Word documents and properly placing the graph caption.

> I've never had a problem with Excel graphs & VBA.  Not sure why you mention
> it, but sure, the defaults are ugly, but not hard to fix.  I'd say amateurs
> produce amateurish charts.  Try http://www.j-walk.com.  He wrote a whole book on
> Excel graphs.  Some are quite pretty.  I do maps in Excel.  More than 32k
> data points would be nice though.

I don't recall what settings they were, but I do recall that I was not
the only one running into this problem.  As it was scientific data, it
would have been the XY scatter chart and probably had something to do
with axes or trace color/point style.  This would have been 4 years
ago and I didn't write it down.  I believe there was a MSDN article
about it.  I bring it up because plots are fairly common in
engineering.

I'm not saying that things can't be done in Word or that they can't
even necessarily be done well.  My main point was that you shouldn't
go nuts trying to format a book in Word, especially if you plan on
handing it off to a publisher.  It is going to be very time consuming
to get Word to format the thing to your liking (assuming you care) and
then it's going to be difficult to reproduce.

Bradley

2005\04\07@121729 by so-8859-1?Q?S=F8ren_Knudsen?=

flavicon
face
Hi,

Am I the only one who finds that many of the things you guys have mentioned Word is able  to do, it does very poor? - I mean shure you have styles and all that.

But why for example, is it, that everytime you paste som text into the darn thing, it has copied the layout with it too. And this both for paste's from Word and from fx a browser.

And its not very good at just about any math equation, either. And lets not forget references.

I find that latex does all of these things and more, in a better way + it enables cvs-style collaboration with your colleagues.

Btw, did I say that I have just switched to using Latex from using Word for over a decade?

Naah... Word is actually ok for what it does.... I am just beginning to like Latex more. I find that when writing big reports and such (100 pages+), it feels like Word isnt quite up to the task. It gets very slow and you start to feel uncertain that it keeps working for you.

That was my 2c on the matter.

- Søren K.

> {Original Message removed}

2005\04\07@130148 by Bradley Ferguson

picon face
On Apr 7, 2005 11:17 AM, Søren Knudsen <TakeThisOuTsorenEraseMEspamspam_OUTaudiomind.dk> wrote:
> Am I the only one who finds that many of the things you guys have mentioned Word is able  to do, it does very poor? - I mean shure you have styles and all that.
>
> But why for example, is it, that everytime you paste som text into the darn thing, it has copied the layout with it too. And this both for paste's from Word and from fx a browser.

Same deal with Excel and the way around that is to Paste Special,
which gives you a multitude of options, one of which, if you're lucky,
is unformatted text.  It's funny how they turned such a common
function as Ctrl+V or Shift+Insert into something that takes 4 mouse
clicks.

> Naah... Word is actually ok for what it does.... I am just beginning to like Latex more. I find that when writing big reports and such (100 pages+), it feels like Word isnt quite up to the task. It gets very slow and you start to feel uncertain that it keeps working for you.

You have to develop that nervous twitch of hitting Ctrl+S if your
fingers are still for more than a second.

Bradley

2005\04\07@132435 by Alvaro Deibe Diaz

picon face
> > Styles aren't a good thing, they are THE thing.  If you don't know
> > styles, you don't know Word.

Styles gives you consistency and speed. They free your head up. You do not
need to remember the format you gave to each piece of text. They are a must
in every document with two or more pages. But they need a little of
knowledge about the final desired presentation of the text. That's right.
Thinking before writing is the best you can do in most cases. You'll reach a
good knowledge about the structure of the text, and how to say the things
you want to say. So, I fully agree:

{Quote hidden}

A word of caution here: I've seen a lot of people fail in the design of the
presentation/formatting. Often, in early stages of the formatting learning
process (with or without styles), one feels the need to show each and every
one of the things he is learning. And, usually, that is not good for the
final document aspect.
Document formatting design is a difficult task. It is easy to try
possibilities in WYSYWIG systems like Word, but this is no guarantee of the
final quality of the presentation. There is a great amount of knowledge
needed to do a good job. And this is the reason why I'll try systems like
LaTeX. This kind of systems have the formatting job already make for you.
You get proffessionally looking text fast and easy, but you must learn how
to use a non-WYSYWIG system before. I missed the OP original post, so LaTeX
could be too much for the task.


2005\04\07@132710 by Tony Smith

picon face
{Quote hidden}

It's because you source document doesn't have styles defined.  If you have 2
word docs, both with styles, text copied from one to the other will update
to the format of the doc you pasted into.  Should work with most HTML, but
not with mail messages.  (Outlook HTML supports styles too)

Word has 2 level of formatting, Styles & Direct.  Everyone (999/1000) does
Direct.  This is where you highlight a bit of text, and click the formatting
toobar until it looks like you want it.  Sure, it won't match the rest of
the doc...

To clear direct formatting, highlight the text, hit Ctrl-Q.  Then set the
styles.

Style aren't just for formatting, they control the Document map, and Outline
view is fun for rapidly re-arranging stuff.  It how you build your table of
contents, and set references.

I'll agree with you on equations (but I've no experience), but remember
that's why LaTex exists.  Pick the right tool.  The science community needs
to hassle MS (with fists full of $) to get it done better.  After all, there
a whole chunk of Word that only lawyers use.  MS & the US Law association
(whoever) sat done and worked out the spec.

MS did it because it was the only way to budge them from WordPerfect.
(WordPerfect said no - silly buggers).

MS also wiped out another word processor when they added footnotes/end
notes/etc.  Students used the other program, and wanted these features for
years.  MS added it to Word, the students all switched, the other program is
history.

I love for a competitor to do Word properly, but it won't happen.  And no,
StarOffice or whatever ain't it.  I don't want a clone, I want better.

Tony

2005\04\07@134531 by Tony Smith

picon face
{Quote hidden}

Well, I didn't mean you specifically.  But most of the world does that.
Easy to fix, replace newline/space with newline.  No biggie.  I've a
FixThisCrap macro.  Works well.  You didn't say you were fiddling with
pictures, as I said graphics layout sucks somewhat in Word.  That's what
Quark is for.  Helps if you link pictures, not embed them.


{Quote hidden}

Fair enough, software has bugs.  Doesn't warrent "never ever use XL graphs
in Word".  You want XL gripes, I've got a huge list.


> I'm not saying that things can't be done in Word or that they can't
> even necessarily be done well.  My main point was that you shouldn't
> go nuts trying to format a book in Word, especially if you plan on
> handing it off to a publisher.  It is going to be very time consuming
> to get Word to format the thing to your liking (assuming you care) and
> then it's going to be difficult to reproduce.


You ask the publisher for their stylesheet.  They tell you what they want,
not vice versa.  Same for newspapers, magazines, etc.  They want you to add
the mark-ups.  They want you link pictures, not embed them.  Etc.  Trust me,
publisher fall over with shock if you hand them a doc with styles in it.  At
least it stops them charging you double for setup.  They take your doc,
apply their template, do a bit of minor fiddling (mainly whitespace cleanup)
and it's done.

Tony

2005\04\07@135939 by Tony Smith

picon face
{Quote hidden}

Because if it didn't you'd complain about that ;-).

Word does Paste Special too, but not off the right-click menu.  Stupid.
It's so when pasting Excel data, you can paste as text, a link or as
graphics.

Actually, Paste Special in Word does suck when embedding files.  But that
tends to be dumb thing to do anyway.

Tony

2005\04\07@155116 by Wouter van Ooijen

face picon face
> I love for a competitor to do Word properly, but it won't
> happen.

Dunno. Last time I was forced to use Word we had to create big documents
(500..2000 pages) with multiple authors. Above e ceratin limit things
simply stopped working. Word crashed or did even less funny things
(affecting the different files that made up the document, so we lost a
lot of it). If I ever had to do something like that again I would go for
a plain text input => formatted output approach.

Wouter van Ooijen

-- -------------------------------------------
Van Ooijen Technische Informatica: http://www.voti.nl
consultancy, development, PICmicro products
docent Hogeschool van Utrecht: http://www.voti.nl/hvu


2005\04\07@160334 by Jan-Erik Soderholm

face picon face
Nice thread... :-)

I'm one of the plain_text/text_formatter types
(for larger docs), just as Wouter. :-)

While looking/googling around, I found DocBook :
http://wiki.docbook.org/topic/DocBook

And specificaly a (free) Windows tool for DocBook ("eDE") :
http://www.e-novative.info/software/ede.php.

DocBook is SGML based (much easier to "read" then LaTeX, IMHO),
so it resambles a lot the old tool I've used before (DEC Document).

I plan to download the 24 Mb eDE kit, but are there anyone
who have used DocBook and/or eDE ? Preferable on Widnows.

Jan-Erik.



2005\04\07@161429 by Harold Hallikainen

face picon face
I'm working on a chapter for an engineering handbook right now. The
publisher wants a doc file with no formatting. They'll do the formatting
(to match the rest of the book).

Harold


--
FCC Rules Updated Daily at http://www.hallikainen.com

2005\04\07@200755 by William Chops Westfield

face picon face
On Apr 7, 2005, at 6:39 AM, Tony Smith wrote:

> PicList must be elite, my usual estimate is 1/1000 know Word.

Ah.  For the days when software came with manuals...

Any suggestions for good books about using Word?

BillW

2005\04\08@021328 by Tony Smith

picon face
{Quote hidden}

Ah, but that's the point of styles, it lets you fiddle with formatting while
keeping the consistency.  With styles, you forget about formatting, and
concentrate on the content.

You're describing a typical beginner in any situation.  Look a web site full
of <blink>, 300 colours & flashing .GIFs.

Tony

2005\04\08@022137 by Tony Smith

picon face
> -----Original Message-----
> From: KILLspampiclist-bouncesspamBeGonespammit.edu [EraseMEpiclist-bouncesspamEraseMEmit.edu]On Behalf
> Of Wouter van Ooijen
> Sent: Friday, 8 April 2005 5:51 AM
> To: 'Microcontroller discussion list - Public.'
> Subject: RE: [OT][AD] MS Word, was Ideas for books on PIC
>
>
> > I love for a competitor to do Word properly, but it won't
> > happen.
>
> Dunno. Last time I was forced to use Word we had to create big documents
> (500..2000 pages) with multiple authors. Above e ceratin limit things
> simply stopped working. Word crashed or did even less funny things
> (affecting the different files that made up the document, so we lost a
> lot of it). If I ever had to do something like that again I would go for
> a plain text input => formatted output approach.

Things that bloat a Word doc are not using styles (some 300 pieces of
formatting info are needed for every paragraph), embedded graphics, table
(which people use because they can figure out tabs), history tracking, fast
saves etc.

You can use Master documents, where you create multiple smaller Sub docs and
join them together, (just like link).  Has few (well known) bugs though.

It's not the numbers of pages, it's the amount of accumulated crap cause by
people who don't 'get it'.

Same as web stuff, I saw a site converted to CSS the other day.  But they
just replaced the font tags with style tags, complete with font name,
colour, size etc.  Guess they didn't 'get it'.

Tony

2005\04\08@022901 by Tony Smith

picon face
> Of Harold Hallikainen
> Sent: Friday, 8 April 2005 6:14 AM
> To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
> Subject: RE: [OT][AD] MS Word, was Ideas for books on PIC

>
> I'm working on a chapter for an engineering handbook right now. The
> publisher wants a doc file with no formatting. They'll do the formatting
> (to match the rest of the book).
>
> Harold
>

If you're confident, ask them for their style sheet.

The reason for the plain text is they don't what to clean up the messes
people send them.  One common thing people do is use a newline to separate
paragraphs, so they have to go thru & take them all out.  With styles, you
can simple say 'after each paragraph, leave 12pts of space'.  Everything
changes.  If you don't like the effect, change it to something else.

Really, what they want is markup tags,  In HTML, if it's a heading, you use
<H1>,<H2> etc.  They determine the format of the headings.

Tony

2005\04\08@024042 by Tony Smith

picon face
> Of William Chops Westfield
> Sent: Friday, 8 April 2005 10:08 AM
> To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
> Subject: Re: [OT][AD] MS Word, was Ideas for books on PIC
>
>
> On Apr 7, 2005, at 6:39 AM, Tony Smith wrote:
>
> > PicList must be elite, my usual estimate is 1/1000 know Word.
>
> Ah.  For the days when software came with manuals...
>
> Any suggestions for good books about using Word?


Getting people to read manuals is the problem (plenty of RTFM in this
list!), and anyway, most manuals aren't that good.  They tell you how to
something, not why.  Styles are the perfect case.  I've seen books where
they talk about using styles (good) but say 'look down the list, a pick one
you like'.  Great, all headings get done as BLOCKQUOTE.

Those training courses don't help, with their
beginner/intermediate/advanced course, with Styles being advanced.  Great,
teach them all bad habits first!

Word has a lot of stuff to 'help' beginners, presumably added because they
don't read manuals.

I can't recommend a book, they all seem to be terrible.  For a beginner, I'd
suggest the Dummies guide.  Seriously, it's not bad.

The problem seems to be is they don't explain that in most cases, you're not
writing, you're publishing.  And don't explain that.

There's no 'Advanced' Word book, not that I can see, so I'm slowly writing
my own.

Tony

2005\04\08@044517 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
> Ah.  For the days when software came with manuals...
>
> Any suggestions for good books about using Word?

Especially ones that do not regurgitate the manual that the training people
regurgitate.

Now what was this thread about? oh, yes, writing a good book on ... ;)))

2005\04\08@123727 by Alvaro Deibe Diaz

picon face
{Quote hidden}

Well, I teach Word to different kind of people, with different knowledte of
Word and software in general, tree or four courses a year. It's
(relativelly) easy to make the students 'get' the styles simplicity and
usefullness, specially if their are beginners. But they don't know things
like why the newspapers use serif fonts and a lot of narrow columns, what is
the best combination to emphatize an expression (italic, underline, bold) in
each context, or the size and face to use in each document. These are
factors that depend on the document, and that require knowledge in
formatting design.

Of course, Styles are the best you can do in larger Word documents, I think.
But Styles are not the final solution. You need a good design of the format
to get an easy-reading document. That's not an easy task. Styles make it
simple to try different options, and this is good. But in the process of
trying you can go the wrong way, and the document can be pretty but
illegible.

Systems based on plain text input for the content, and formatted text output
using style sheets, are better options. You can use trusted style sheets,
and concentrate on the content. The formatting will be automatically done
for you. LaTeX and SGML, among other systems, go that way. Militar and
industrial documents all around the world go the SGML way, ant technical
papers, thesis and scientific articles the LaTeX way.


2005\04\08@161247 by Peter

picon face

On Fri, 8 Apr 2005, Tony Smith wrote:

> Things that bloat a Word doc are not using styles (some 300 pieces of
> formatting info are needed for every paragraph), embedded graphics, table
> (which people use because they can figure out tabs), history tracking, fast
> saves etc.
>
> You can use Master documents, where you create multiple smaller Sub docs and
> join them together, (just like link).  Has few (well known) bugs though.
>
> It's not the numbers of pages, it's the amount of accumulated crap cause by
> people who don't 'get it'.
>
> Same as web stuff, I saw a site converted to CSS the other day.  But they
> just replaced the font tags with style tags, complete with font name,
> colour, size etc.  Guess they didn't 'get it'.

Is there a real life example of a Word document of 200+ pages with
embedded tables and minimal graphics (like header and footer lines) that
can be loaded on another system with a different version of Word and
edited ?

There are at least several dozens of equivalent TeX documents on the
internet, most of them distributed formatted as ps or pdf, but the
sources are available.

Peter

2005\04\08@232949 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Peter wrote:

> Is there a real life example of a Word document of 200+ pages with
> embedded tables and minimal graphics (like header and footer lines) that
> can be loaded on another system with a different version of Word and
> edited ?

Over the last couple years it has become rare, but I used to do that all
the time. Sometimes some minor odd artifacts came up, but mostly really
minor stuff.

Gerhard

2005\04\09@104458 by Tony Smith

picon face
{Quote hidden}

I'm not disagreeing with what you are saying, but writing a document &
designing it's layout are two different things, often done by two different
people.  Design isn't as easy as it looks, as you mention; people often
don't learn WHY you do things.

As an aside, don't teach people bold, italic & underline, teach them Strong,
Emphasis & that you never underline anything.

Word does have style sheets, they're called templates.  A template can be as
simple as a collection of styles.  You simply re-apply the template.
PowerPoint does this better than Word, BTW (but MS didn't write PowerPoint
;-) ).

So long a the person writing the document uses the correct mark-up tags,
everyone is happy.  Eg earlier in the thread someone mentioned he created a
style called PgmCode, when he should have used the built-in Macro Text
instead.  Don't forget how the thread started - "Word sucks since it doesn't
do abc".

Tony

2005\04\09@122246 by Tony Smith

picon face

> Of Peter
> Sent: Saturday, 9 April 2005 6:13 AM
> To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
> Subject: RE: [OT][AD] MS Word, was Ideas for books on PIC
>
>
>
> Is there a real life example of a Word document of 200+ pages with
> embedded tables and minimal graphics (like header and footer lines) that
> can be loaded on another system with a different version of Word and
> edited ?
>
> There are at least several dozens of equivalent TeX documents on the
> internet, most of them distributed formatted as ps or pdf, but the
> sources are available.
>
> Peter


Most stuff like that tends to be boring/interesting tech docs.  Have a
rummage around the MS site, bearing in mind not all MS employee know Word!
I've got some MASM v6.11 docs that are nicely done.  There's a 'Word Legal
Users Guide' in there somewhere.

I don't think there's a great deal of difference for 97-2003 Word formats.
I don't know if '97 will open a 2003 doc.  There's a compatibility option in
Word where you can disable later features, ie, setting it to Word 2000 stops
you using Word 2003 specific features that effect the saved file.  Probably
things like SharePoint etc.

About 3 months ago I could had given you some very well done stuff, 1000
page docs etc.  The woman who did those knew her stuff, you could spot later
changes done by others since the formatting didn't match...

Try getting the JAL documentation off Wouters website.  I think the JAL
manual is around 75 pages or so.  It's a got a bit of 'odd' stuff in it but
nothing much.  (Some things manually set to Heading 1 level, which makes
Outline view a bit 'interesting', and manually inserting pages break, rather
than modifying the Heading 1 style to automatically add the page break).

FAiling that, create   your own.  Typing =rand(100,5) will spit out 100
paragraphs with 5 sentences each saying 'The quick brown fox jumps over the
lazy dog'.  Change numbers for less/more text.

Tony

2005\04\10@180944 by Tony Smith

picon face
This was a rather fascinating thread, mainly because it confirms my belief
in the number of people who know Word.

For those who like to learn from example (probably most people on this
list), there's a few templates supplied with Word that show off Word's
features, and explain how to use them.

Hit File/New, then the Publications tab.  Manual is the most interesting
one, it covers how to do pretty much anything you'd find in a technical book
at your local bookstore.

Brochure & Directory are worth a look.

These were done by a pro, one obvious sign is there's a Style called 'List
Last'.  When doing lists (bullet, number etc), you need 3 styles, List
First, List, & List Last.  This allows you to treat the first & last items
in a list differently (any programmer knows about these!).  It's done to
control spacing between the list & the rest of the text.  Only pro's are
anal enough to put these styles in.  (I wrote a macro to do it for me.)

I suspect these come only with the Professional version of Word, drop me an
email offline if you want a copy.

Tony

2005\04\10@213620 by William Chops Westfield

face picon face
On Apr 10, 2005, at 3:09 PM, Tony Smith wrote:

> This was a rather fascinating thread, mainly because it confirms
>  my belief in the number of people who know Word.
>
Well, it was YOU who said that almost all of the books were lousy,
and the manual (what there is of it) is worse, right?
How is anyone supposed to learn?  Classes that cost more than the
(already pricey) software itself?

>
> For those who like to learn from example, there's a few templates
> supplied
> with Word that show off Word's features, and explain how to use them.

Huh.  Part if my decision to look for something else was based on not
FINDING any reasonable templates.  The "longest" template looked like
it was for a school paper, and many of them were aimed at one-page
documents like "brochure."

>
> Hit File/New, then the Publications tab.
> Manual is the most interesting one...

So what version of Word are YOU using?  In my "Word X for Mac" (2001),
the closest equivalent seems to be File/Project_Gallery, and there's
no "Manual" anywhere there.  There are some additional templates I
didn't
have installed as part of the "Value package" on the CD, but there's no
"Manual" there, either...

BillW

2005\04\10@230603 by Tony Smith

picon face

{Quote hidden}

"Manual" there, either...
>
> BillW


I'm guessing those templates came with the Word 2000 Pro/Windows. I've got
all of the WinWord versions installed (95-2003) so I can't be sure.

I'll stick by my statement that all Word books are horrid (given up
looking), and I'll add that those courses are a scam.  They all treat styles
as an advanced topic (ooh, scary), when it's (a) not hard, and (b) the whole
point of Word.  eg, they teach you that to do bullet lists, you click the
button of the format bar, rather than use a style.  The fun starts when you
have to change the round bullets to square ones... at which point the 'Word
sucks' cry is heard.

I wasn't joking when I recommended the Dummies book - that's what I learnt
Word from.  The only Word book I have is the Wrox VBA guide, simply because
it's the only one.  I haven't read much of it since you don't need VBA to
get things done in Word (unlike Excel).  It starts off with the author
carefully explaining what you should not do, then he spends the rest of the
book doing just that.  Anyway, I usually just record macros and look at
those to see what's going on.

The rest I figured out by knowing a bit about publishing, and websites such
as http://www.mvps.org/word/.

Tony

2005\04\11@003448 by Chetan Bhargava

picon face
I would appreciate if [AD] tag is removed from the future postings on
this thread. I don't think it is an AD anymore.

Thanks,



On Apr 10, 2005 8:05 PM, Tony Smith <@spam@ajsmith@spam@spamspam_OUTrivernet.com.au> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2005\04\11@074822 by olin_piclist

face picon face
Tony Smith wrote:
> For those who like to learn from example (probably most people on this
> list)

Probably not.  Examples are really bad ways to learn.  They show you a
single instance and you can only guess at the general rules.  Examples are
useful only to clarify the usage of the general rules after they have been
explained.  Information without context isn't much information at all.

Unfortunately all too much documentation is geared towards examples already.
This is one of the frustrations I have with Excel in particular.  The help
only tells you how to solve particular problems, which rarely match exactly
my problems.  I'd rather read a 50 page overview of Excel that explains
*how* it works.  Then I can figure out how to make it do the particular
thing I want myself, perhaps with specific examples from the online help.

I first learned Word a long time ago when writing a book.  Back then the
help was a whole manual.  It was a bit tedius to navigate thru it like a
book using the help interface, but at least it was possible.  I've noticed
newer versions are geared towards idiots who apparently (at least so
Microsoft thinks) prefer to have that annoying paper clip wink at them than
actually (insert horrified gasp) *learn* something.


*****************************************************************
Embed Inc, embedded system specialists in Littleton Massachusetts
(978) 742-9014, http://www.embedinc.com

2005\04\11@103028 by Tony Smith

picon face
> -----Original Message-----
> From: spamBeGonepiclist-bouncesspamKILLspammit.edu [.....piclist-bouncesspam_OUTspammit.edu]On Behalf
> Of Olin Lathrop
>
> Tony Smith wrote:
> > For those who like to learn from example (probably most people on this
> > list)
>
> Probably not.  Examples are really bad ways to learn.  They show you a
> single instance and you can only guess at the general rules.  Examples are
> useful only to clarify the usage of the general rules after they have been
> explained.  Information without context isn't much information at all.
>

This example is actually useful.  The Manual.dot template shows most of the
word features, and rather than use dummy text, explains how to do it
instead.

Learning Excel is a magnitude greater than learning Word.  Excel deals with
lists, call them tables if you like.  Header & data.  One per sheet.  Gotta
learn PivotTables (like SQL crosstabs).  That said, Excel will drive you
nuts.

Tony

2005\04\11@114407 by Bob Barr

flavicon
face
On Mon, 11 Apr 2005 07:49:05 -0400, Olin Lathrop wrote:

<snip>
>I've noticed
>newer versions are geared towards idiots who apparently (at least so
>Microsoft thinks) prefer to have that annoying paper clip wink at them than
>actually (insert horrified gasp) *learn* something.
>

If I'm not mistaken, marketing folks refer to this as "knowing your
target audience". :=)


Regards, Bob

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