Thursday, October 16, 2014

Automatic Fun!

It is probably fair to say that the vast majority of us appreciate Spellcheck in the apps we use on a daily basis (except, of course, when it chooses to do weird substitutions…).  What many Excel pros are missing, however, is that they can Customize automatic corrections with the highly useful, (but typically underutilized), Autocorrect tool.

This is particularly useful if you find yourself typing long (or even moderate) Boilerplate phrases that are tedious and time-consuming.  For a brief example, let’s say you work for Harley-Davidson Motor Company and the company policy is that no abbreviations of the corporate name be used in correspondence.  Typing the entire name every time you do any kind of spreadsheet or correspondence may not seem terribly onerous, but it can be a small irritation (and who needs that!).

The way you set up a phrase (company name in this case) in Autocorrect may seem like a bit of a chore, AutoCorrect can make this is as easy as typing HDMC.

Here is How You can Set this Up:

1. Go to FILE and select Options from the bottom of the column

2. Choose Proofing and click on the AutoCorrect Options button

4. In the Replace box, type HDMC

5. In the With box, type Harley-Davidson Motor Company

6. Click Add and then OK. That’s all there is to it!

But wait! There is a chance for some Tricks along with the Treats.  Many of you know the gag of accessing a fellow employee’s computer, and switching the mouse controls from (for example) to left-handed from right-handed, and then watching the bewilderment of the user.  Well, you can also have some fun (all very adolescent) with a person with Autocorrect. 

Let’s say you have a friend named Jim at work (or whomever). While he is away from his computer, go into AutoCorrect and enter Jim in the Replace box and Easy Rider in the With box. This can be done in Word too, of course, and he will perhaps think he is channeling the Harley experience.  (Just be sure you have him do this in your presence, so he doesn’t unnecessarily embarrass himself.)

Autocorrect.  Useful for productivity and a bit of mischief. 

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