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Old Jan 1st, 2011, 11:23 AM   #51
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The continuing saga.... here's the footer information from page 240 of a 297-page document. Previous page # is 30 (Looks like every time I inserted a Section Break-->Next Page, it reset the footer page count). Apparently "Same as previous" doesn't mean much in this version....
Could we get a better idea of what you are doing? You are working on a ~300 page manuscript (although you said 400 in a previous post). You have Track Changes enabled. How many other authors have edited the document? Are they all on the exact same version of Word? Editing the same document with multiple Word versions has been fraught with risk for many years. I wouldn't expect all those problems have been completely conquered just now.

The document has at least 34 sections. One for each chapter? (Plus title page, plus foreword, etc.) Do you have a table of contents? (Driven from heading styles or .toc entries?) Other auto-updating tables? Footnotes?

What about non-text content? Lots of pictures, graphs, Word Art, etc?

Overall, just with 300 pages, 34 sections and more than one author, you are dealing with a moderately long and complicated document. If there are other features in use, the complexity and opportunity for glitches and outright document corruption just keeps going up. There are whole web sites out there dedicated to dealing with long, complicated documents in (older versions of) Word. It's not clear to me if you've dealt with these issues in the past or not.

Regardless, I think you were ill-advised to jump into Word 2011 with no experience and no time for familiarization. There are some resources out there (eg http://www.officeformachelp.com/word/) but you have to put some time into it.

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Old Jan 1st, 2011, 01:31 PM   #52
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WCraig, kps: I'm not new to Word I've been editing manuscripts for final editorial submission for at least a decade. Consider this thread my rant against poor user interface decisions in MS Office. I'm willing to swallow my pride to RTFM, but seriously - the things I'm doing are NOT NEW, they're things I did with... well, not ease, but somewhat less frustration.... in previous versions of Word.

The document is 300 pages long. Pure text (ick). No tables, no graphics. Each chapter is a separate section so as to allow for running headers appropriate to chapter.

I had considered using the auto-TOC creation using tagged Section headings, etc., but the Series Editor advised against it - his team prefers the document to be as "clean" as possible, eschewing the crappy code that MS puts into its documents.

Oodles of footnotes.

Tracking changes is disabled for this document at the moment, since I'm dealing purely with formatting issues on this edit. Once this is propagated to the team, TC will be re-enabled for further nitty-gritty cleanup.

As for the Find & Replace problem: Command-F will take you to the Search field in the Standard Toolbar (top) IF that toolbar is enabled. If it is not, the keystroke opens the sidebar search.

To maximize my screen real estate, after realizing that Word 2011 is unusable when you kill the ribbon and employ the Standard and Formatting toolbars (see previous posts for what happens to Reviewing tools without the ribbon), I reactivated the ribbon and am learning to deal with the tabs, and have turned off all other toolbars, since their functionality is redundant.

So - the sidebar search, at least in "pure Ribbon mode" seems to me to be broken. I have a mountain of frequent strings of text that need to be replaced. The inability to use Copy-and-Paste in the sidebar is a major pain. The odd thing is - it worked two days ago. Now it doesn't. Typical MS.

crawford: I do remember the old Find & Replace window being a pain, in that I was constantly moving it out of my way. The new F&R window is an improvement in that regard, with ONE major exception (besides the copy & paste bug): after you perform a F&R, the document jumps to the first instance of change, rather than leaving you where you were. In a long document, that means I have to find my way back to the point I was editing (usually trying to remember to note the page number and some textual indicator). You say you've been unable to replicate my inability to paste into the search field of the sidebar? Do you by chance have the Standard toolbar active?
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Old Jan 1st, 2011, 03:33 PM   #53
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WCraig, kps: I'm not new to Word I've been editing manuscripts for final editorial submission for at least a decade. Consider this thread my rant against poor user interface decisions in MS Office. I'm willing to swallow my pride to RTFM, but seriously - the things I'm doing are NOT NEW, they're things I did with... well, not ease, but somewhat less frustration.... in previous versions of Word.
I think you realize 'twas friendly ribbing and I don't RTFM either. I don't do as much writing as you and I'm still trying to wrap my head around Office'08 after coming from the original X version. MS has a fine history of turning things topsy-turvy for the sake of innovation.
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Old Jan 1st, 2011, 05:05 PM   #54
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Y'know, SD-B, it's really not that different from the last one. The last one was crap, and this one is crap too.

It's adding formatting willy-nilly, changing font faces as it desires, etc. I swear, Microsoft has managed to create artificial intelligence. It does what it wants, when it wants, and it's just not that smart. In fact, it seems to suffer from severe cerebral deficiencies.

I may just open this up in Pages, be productive, and export to Word, hoping that these 400+ pages all come out properly formatted....

I am no where as experienced with Office as you are from what i read here. Without browsing throu, what office software is your preference?


I ask because I need to become more proficient with office type software than I am, and working with companies that generally use Macs....I am just not sure at this point which is the most commonly used suite..
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Old Jan 1st, 2011, 05:24 PM   #55
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SD-B, software (and other) decisions should be based on NEEDS. Real, not perceived.

I NEED to work in the latest Office suite, because those I collaborate with have it, as do the publishing houses to whom we send manuscripts. As much as is possible, we need to minimize the differences between our systems to try and avoid any potential problems in formatting.

As I noted previously, I use Word because I *have* to, not because I *want* to. I don't find it to be the most conducive to productivity.

For my own document usage, Pages is perfectly fine, and has 95% Word file compatibility. I bought iWork for Keynote, so Pages came in the package... but I still think it's worth the $80. Note than in five days, we may well see the iWork applications de-bundled.... keep your eyes on the Mac App Store.

One challenge facing those who adopt Pages is that there is little difference between '06 / '08 / '09 versions to "push" users to upgrade their suites. So users with older installations of iWork may not be able to open newer files. But the same applies with Office, and their damn ".docx" file format.

However.... Pages' ability to save files as DOC makes it universally useful. More than sufficient for most uses. You may find challenges in the areas of Mail Merge and the like, but again - it comes down to needs. Do an assessment of what you need an Office suite to do for you, and then investigate (or ask us!) if Pages can fill the bill.
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Old Jan 5th, 2011, 07:14 AM   #56
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I don't think I've ever created a new document in Office. I have 2004 on the 10.6 machine and it opens whatever I need it to open, seems to run fine. Good enough.

I really miss ClarisWorks/AppleWorks. One application, cross-platform, does what all the separate apps in Office does. A great concept ... gone now. Funny thing is these days, Windows users actually will consider an Apple app on their machines, which is why it was killed.

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Best total piece of crap office suite I ever used
Same thing people say with every release, since Word 5 (released 1991) was replaced with Word 6 (Mac)/Word for Windows (MS Word 6.0) in 1993, morphing a great functional tool into a "hydra-headed monster". I actually did use Word 5, now that I think about it, but switched to WordPerfect 3.5 and Nisus Writer after that.

Even though the whole office productivity thing hasn't really improved in over 20 years, the short answer is they teach Office in Business College and your accountant will dump you if you don't use Excel, so we're stuck with it. Think of it as the computing equivalent to Traffic Jams or perhaps Mosquitoes. Nothing, apparently, can be done about any of them.

Hmmmm ... seemed to have forgotten the *RANT* warning. Oh well

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Old Jan 5th, 2011, 11:05 AM   #57
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gordguide, you make me nostalgic. If Word 5.1a would run under Snow Leopard and open .docx files, I'd dump Office 2011 faster than a rat flies out of an aqueduct...
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Old Jan 11th, 2011, 04:07 PM   #58
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In addition to my challenges with Find & Replace (see post #48 above), there is another challenge.

Sometimes Find doesn't find. Sometimes it does. Sometimes you have to hit "find" two or three times for it to actually do something. And 100% of the time, it depends where you left your cursor.

An example:

My cursor is sitting inside the main text body. Enter a search term (I'm using the sidebar to show results - but you can enter the term in the toolbar field or the sidebar field). The sidebar then shows results. For results found in the Footnote area, it precedes the item with "Footnote" highlighted in Yellow. Fine. So you can click or arrow through the sidebar results. The Footnote results are always shown at the bottom.

I enter another search term in the Find window. Now it will find only terms that appear in footnotes, because that's where the cursor is last "active". It will not find terms in the main body of the text. You need to click (repeatedly, it turns out) in the body of the text to make Find actually, y'know, find.

But the hit-or-miss Find feature, even when you have the cursor active in the main body of the text, is what has me baffled. I usually run with "Ignore Case" checked, to return the largest possible result list. But clicking the Find button often results in NOTHING. Hit it again. 60% possibility of NOTHING. Hit it a third time - you may get results.

Microsoft Word may well be the most powerful Word Processor out there. But as a tool, it's getting in my way, not helping me get the job done.
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Old Jan 24th, 2011, 10:43 AM   #59
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Very few stability issues here so far (knock wood) but then again I'm not working on 300-page manuscripts with all sorts of tricky stuff and multiple collaborators. (Any publisher that mandates .doc or .docx for book-length manuscripts is insane... word processors have always been second-best (at best) for long projects.)

But man, find-and-replace is so broken it isn't funny.

When I first started using Word 11, I was frustrated with the awful new find-and-replace interface, then somewhat relieved to find the old (clunky but functional and familiar) F&R interface buried under Edit > Find > Advanced Find and Replace, then pissed to note that a) there's no keyboard shortcut to open said window and b) the "search all open documents" option had been removed (if it's hiding out somewhere else in the program, it's very well hidden indeed). So the "Advanced" (which appears to mean "ten or more years old") function is, in a nut, broken too. Just so many puzzling and half-baked ideas and decisions made on this one crucial feature... not very surprising, but disappointing nonetheless.

It also took me a while to find "Accept all Changes" in the ribbon, seriously thought for a while that this too had been zapped. But at least it's there.... I too use the ribbon as little as possible, and I'm not using a laptop with a small screen, but I find it hard to get too worked up about it. In its minimized state (where it stays 99% of the time), it's pretty unobtrusive.

Another one of Mark's complaints stands out... random face/style changes. Yes, these still happen but this is one area that's notably improved since v. X. Maybe in another decade this will cease to be an issue.
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Old Jan 24th, 2011, 12:56 PM   #60
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Heh... "Accept all changes"... I simply gave up looking for it for a few days... eventually it popped into view. Word 2011 sucks, man.
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