iOS: One of the annoying things about working with text on your phone or iPad is that properly formatting it can be a bother, especially when you're copying and pasting between apps and get line breaks where you don't want them. Clean Text for iOS aims to fix that.
Tagged With formatting
After our Windows encryption showdown, reader Jerod passed along this tip to make sure your encrypted volumes, especially external hard drives, in Windows play nicely with other platforms like OS X -- just format them as exFAT, and they will be mountable, readable and writable everywhere you go.
Excel is a whizz at totalling numbers, but if too much copy-and-pasting and editing has turned some numbers in your spreadsheet into text format, then the results are often way out of whack. It's almost impossible to fix that kind of problem without some manual intervention, but the TRIM and CLEAN functions can make the task simpler.
The official Word blog discusses how to fix a tricky formatting problem in Word -- using a pre-defined heading style in a document but not have every instance show up in an automatically-generated table of contents. (By default, Word includes all instances that match existing heading styles in any contents table.) The solution on offer -- copy the existing style and give it a new name while removing its status as a heading -- is fairly neat, though it does have one disadvantage: if you modify the original heading style, those changes won't show up automatically in the cloned style.
Taking Control of Your Table of Contents or Document Map
The table formatting tools in Word 2007 might be ridiculously distributed over three separate parts of the Ribbon, but there are some pretty useful options buried in there. The Word Team Blog offers a helpful and pretty comprehensive look at the benefits of using conditional table styles, which let you set up neat tricks like rows in alternating colours that automatically adjust themselves as new data gets added. Not sure how to fix up styles in a regular document, let alone a table? Learn how to use the Styles pane for a more consistent look.
Behind The Curtains: Table Styles
When Word documents get edited by multiple people, the end result is often an unholy mess, since most people still tend to make direct formatting changes (such as adding bold and italics) rather than using Word's Styles feature for consistency. The Microsoft Word Team blog gives a useful overview of how you can rescue a format-challenged document by using the Styles pane to identify all the formatting used in a document, and replace ad-hoc formatting with properly defined styles. This useful feature is less than obvious in Word 2007, since the option to launch the actual styles list is a ridiculously tiny arrow under Change Styles and the default is to show only 'recommended' styles rather than what's actually in use, but it's still there. How to Make the Formatting in Your Document Consistent
Windows only: Anyone who uses email can dig up a popular forwarded message or deep conversation thread rendered nearly unreadable by formatting along the way. StripMail is a free program that not only strips the > characters out, no matter how many layers deep, but it can format the resulting text back into paragraphs.