Friday, July 28, 2006

Friday, July 28, 2006


I am in the habit of working from Windows Explorer, right-clicking on a document and sending it to an application, in this case WinWord.

I’m using this rather than double-clicking on the document because I want to open the specific document in Word2000 rather than Word2007.

When I double-click on a file it now opens the document in Word2007. I find this a positive step, as it drags me kicking and screaming into making use of the new user interface. However, part of the hijack mechanism seems to include losing the target of the Send To shortcut, for the first Send To after running Word2007 sends Windows scurrying for the shortcut – which it finds, always, after a search of five seconds or so.

I’m puzzled that the hijack hasn’t completely hijacked. It hasn’t taken over the Send To shortcut, just orphaned it. And Windows always recovers to point to Word2000, which is what I want.


I am amazed.

For ten years now Microsoft has trumpeted the web-based thinking of documents. Six years ago I found the Web toolbar in Word so obnoxiously in-you-face that I wrote a macro to hide the darn thing whenever Word was loaded. I maintained the Back button on the toolbar.

Here I am in Word2007. Beta, still, admittedly, and I have fired up a main document, clicked on a hyperlink, worked in the secondary document, and would like to return to the main document.

In previous versions of Word I would click the green back button. Can’t find it in any ribbon in Word2007.

Use Help, that’s what I’ll do. Help says in part “The Web toolbar is not available in Microsoft Office PowerPoint 2007, Microsoft Office Word 2007, or Microsoft Office Excel 2007. You can add the Back, Forward, and Refresh buttons to the Quick Access Toolbar, which is available under All Commands or Commands Not in the Ribbon. Click the Microsoft Office Button , click Prepare, and then click Properties”.

Except that I can’t recall ever seeing “Prepare” in Word2007. It’s been a couple of weeks, so I am still a novice.

I try Options, Customization, which is where I think they want me to be. I have scoured the list, All Commands yet, looking for anything that resembled Back, Forward or Refresh, and can not see any thing remotely useful. I have looked both for those texts and for any icon that resembles a backward-pointing arrow.

Nothing. Nada. Zilch.

What is going on here? Why should it be so difficult to use hyperlinked documents? And why isn’t something as useful as hyperlinked documents available prominently in a ribbon, somewhere?


Style Area Width and the Help files

I am accustomed to working with a one-inch wide style area on the left-hand side of my screen. (Tools, Options, View, style area width”, but you must be in Normal view for this)

Of course I’d like to use the feature in Word2007.

You might think “pearl” and then options, hunt around for a minute – after all, it can’t hurt to become familiar with the new interface for options – but then shrug and try the Help system

In the Help box I type “style area width” without the quotes, and am rewarded with this:

Not a trace of Style Area Width in any of the first ten articles.

I try again with the quotes, as in “style area width”, perhaps I ought to be more explicit. No. Nothing. (See “Nada. Zilch” above!)

Here is the puzzling thing about this:

I will learn to live with/without the style area.

If it exists I will find it, by luck or my reading a forum.

But by all that is holy, why not load the entire vocabulary of office 2003 into the Office 2007 help files, index the lot, and assign a small team of young technical writers to flesh out every entry, even if the entry says “Sorry, we didn’t implement that”, so that every migrating user would get, at the least, acknowledgement of the search. Either as a mild rebuff, or as a pointer to the new terminology.

For example, asking for help on “View Normal” should produce a simple text See “View, Draft”.

And in my case asking for help on “style area width” should produce either “We don’t do that any more” or “here is what we called it in 2007”.

But not nothing.

Not silence.


I knew that this would happen. I found it. “Style Area Pane”. I knew I’d seen it before, but didn’t like to say so in my earlier posting, for I was not absolutely certain.

Naturally, once I have set my Pane (Hooray!), I wonder what might be new about it in Word2007.

I use Help and key in the correct terminology.

Guess what:

Nothing about it at all, as far as I can see.


Spell check this time.

I hope this is just a Beta aberration.

Word 2000 recognizes and attempts to correct “ascii”:

Word 2007 doesn’t:


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