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People say that necessity is the mother of invention, but really laziness is (and I mean that in a good way!).


I call it copyhacking, and I couldn't imagine working without it.

Level 1 moves (on a Mac keyboard):
command + c (copy)
command + v (paste)
command + z (undo)
command + y (redo)

Ninja move: fn + command + F3 = change case of selection (i.e., ON A MAC KEYBOARD to On A Mac Keyboard to on a mac keyboard)

Also, I've set command + c to be my "insert comment" shortcut.


I would like to know how to change all occurrences of ALL CAPS in a document to Initial Caps in one fell swoop. Is there a way to do this in Word?

Katharine O'Moore-Klopf

You can speed up the routine parts of editing also by learning to use macros and templates.

Here are two sources of good editing macro packages: http://www.editorium.com/ and http://www.wordsnsync.com/edittools.php.

Here is a source of information on using macros: http://www.editorsforum.org/forum_index_articles/tip_17_electr_edit_w-your_computer_03-16-04.php.

Here is a short book on using macros, templates, and custom Microsoft Word features: http://www.lulu.com/product/paperback/making-word-work-for-you/5538906.

The CopyWright

Buy a Logitech Trackman Marble mouse and apologize to no one for not using shortcuts!
----Loyal mouser


@Erin: Shift+F3 cycles through all-caps/lc/init-cap-only


yeeeah, but macros are virus-prone, i don trustem. I copyedit w/ shortcut keystrokes galore, if you cant you dont really know how to use the tool you're wielding; get some training. But answer me this -- why, when sp-cking an alien document does Word hop dictionaries -- from English (US) to English(UK) w/ no warning! or opt-out! -- & even to French German Italian ....?

My authors write docs that cause me to hop over to unwanted dictionaries in sp-chk and I cannot seem to force Word to stick to English(US) while going thru a document.

And nobody give me shit about spell-cking, I correct complex economics books and enforce CMOS consistency etc. but use. sp-ck as a final step to catch my own slip-ups on proper names etc., and you should too.

So: how do I force/choose dictionaries once sp-ck has begin?



Great! Thanks, AnnieP!


Great post. Getting others to use keyboard shortcuts is the trick though. It's like evangelism--you're telling that person something really important to you but you don't want to make them feel stupid or awkward. But once you get someone on board, you find that you can't control your enthusiasm. I'm now getting ready to spread the word about the suggestion to create an insert comment shortcut, thanks to Frontmatter!


@Erin I'm assuming that you truly means all words in all caps. If so, Yes, there is a way to change all words in all caps to initial caps in one fell swoop, or rather a combination of swoops. (1) use Find (not Replace) with "Highlight all items found in" turned on. (2) Use wildcards to specify words in all caps. (3) Once you've run Find and all results are highlighted, cancel the Find box. (4) Use Shift + F3 to cycle to the appropriate capping. All highlighted words will be affected.

The problem, of course, is that this will affect valid acronyms and initialisms.


On a Mac it's Command-Z, and I frequently find myself trying to use it in real life, such as when I take the wrong exit off the highway.

Sarah Callejo

Shortcuts are such a time-saving blessing!!
I get so annoyed with new applications that barely include hotkeys or shortcuts.
And many times our fingers just go to the key combinations automatically, regardless of the programme!

Kristen Stieffel

On a Mac, most menus will show you what the keyboard shortcut is for a menu choice. For example, in Firefox, if I open View > Zoom > Text Zoom in, it shows the command-plus shortcut.

I don't touch the mouse til I have to.


VBA code (aka, macros) aren't "virus-prone" if you write them yourself. Once you get a basic idea of how they work, you they can really be helpful.

One of the most helpful for me is a bit of code that will delete all the "live" hyperlinks in a document or in whatever text you have selected: http://www.infinitecadenza.com/VBA/Word.html#hdel


I recommend LaTeX and Vim; or LaTeX and any other feature-rich text editor (e.g., Geany).



I have a macro that allows me to paste unformatted text by pushing Ctrl+K. It has changed my life. I highly recommend editors make macros for the things that annoy them because they take 3 or 4 steps.


It's amazing to me how few people use keyboard shortcuts, and yes, I can't stand watching people slowly mouse to easy destinations. Especially when watching students and conference speakers start Powerpoint presentations by mouse instead of pressing F5. Very, very slow.

I'm always glad to learn a new shortcut.

Valerie (Kyriosity)

Another way to save those carpal tunnel nerves is to ditch the mouse altogether and invest in a tablet such as those produced by Wacom.* I've been using them for 12 or 14 years now, and would otherwise probably have needed surgery by now. They take some getting used to (an added bonus is getting to flummox any tech support people who come to work on your machine), but soon become second nature.

*Forgive the commercial endorsement, but I love 'em! I use their most basic model -- http://www.wacom.com/bamboo/bamboo_pen.php -- and note that the price has come down 30 percent since I replaced mine.


So. True. How do text workers get through the day without keyboard shortcuts? I posted 5 shortcuts I can't live without. Mostly, the shortcuts navigate word documents. http://ow.ly/4ZO8f

My clients don't let me use macros (too buggy and "unsafe") but I do program a raft of autocorrects and clipboard items (for pasting) for each new project. Also, I programmed the 11 buttons on my tablet for my most common actions. (Second shout-out to Wacom. Simply invaluable. I bought the fanciest one, though I work exclusively in text. Because, I'm fancy.)

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