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Word Hacks: Tips & Tools for Taming Your Text Paperback – 2 Dec 2004

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Product details

  • Paperback: 400 pages
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media; 1 edition (2 Dec. 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0596004931
  • ISBN-13: 978-0596004934
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 2.2 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 852,091 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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Product Description

From the Publisher

Become a power user with Word Hacks! Insider tips, tools, tricks, and hacks help you accomplish your pressing tasks, address your frequent annoyances, and solve even your most complex problems. The book examines Word's advanced (and often hidden) features and delivers clever, time-saving hacks on taming document bloat, customization, complex search and replace, tables and comments, XML, and even using Google without leaving Word!

About the Author

Andrew Savikas works in the O'Reilly Tools Group, where he helps the Production department turn manuscripts into O'Reilly books. He developed and maintains the custom Word template and VBA macros used by all the O'Reilly authors who don't insist on writing in POD. Except for the ones who insist on writing in XML. Or Troff. Andrew also works with FrameMaker, FrameScript, InDesign, DocBook XML, Perl, Python, sed, and whatever else he finds lying around the office. He has a degree in Communications from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and lives in Boston with his wife Audrey, who loves to see her name in print.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

By Him on 10 Jan. 2013
Format: Paperback
It's a great shame that so few people fully expolit the functionality of MicroSoft Word (especially what can be done with VBA). This book contains quite a few useful suggestions. See also it's "sister" publication: Excel Hacks - every bit as good.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 7 reviews
22 of 25 people found the following review helpful
Break into the world of Word macros 7 Jan. 2005
By Meryl K. Evans - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
A better subtitle for this is "Tips for Taming It with Macros." The book begins with showing how to tweak the interface to meet your needs, one of the few hacks not requiring macros. For a long time, I never modified the interface beyond choosing the tool bars I wanted to view. I frequently used the word count feature and added that to the interface. Since then, I've learned to modify it based on my needs so I can quickly access the most often used features. Tip #1 is all about that.

Haven't ventured into macros, or at least not much? Get a crash course on how to create and run macros so you can use those included in the book and venture on your own. Savikas explains the basics at the 30-foot level while guiding the reader through the steps of creating and running a simple macro. Many of the hacks use macros.

When clicking on a link to a .doc file from within a Web site, the file opens within the browser and editing it is difficult because many of Word's tool bars are not there for your use. Hack #8 puts an end to this nuisance. In "Building a Better MRU" (most recently used), take the MRU file feature up a notch and pump it up with a form.

According to the book, most of the hacks work with Word 2000, 2002 (also known as Word XP), and 2003. It mentions some of the hacks work with the old Word 97, but the book focuses on 2000, 2002, and 2003. The last chapter, "Word 2003 XML Hacks," begins on page 319 and is the only one specific to the newest version of Word.

The book follows the Hack series model making it easy to use as a reference. All the tips offered are listed in the table of contents. If you like what you find there and want something heavily focused on macros, the book will satisfy your needs. Those looking for a manual with help for getting around Word and discovering some of its power are better off with a different book.

Anyone who is comfy with Word and likes to fiddle with something a little more advanced will get just that. Try a couple of hacks at a time to build up your Word knowledge. Soon you'll be creating your own macros. Those who are macro pros might not glean much from the book. The book's publisher's Web site includes five sample hacks <[...]>. Try them out to get a feel for what the book offers. The same page has a link for downloading code examples from the book.
17 of 19 people found the following review helpful
Excellent resource for Word and COM programmers... 14 Feb. 2005
By Thomas Duff - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback
It seems like the Hacks series just keeps getting better and better. This time I had a chance to review the book Word Hacks by Andrew Savikas (O'Reilly). As usual, there are a number of items here that I'll be able to use right away...

Chapter list: Word Under the Hood; The Word Workspace; Formatting, Printing, and Table Hacks; Editing Power Tools; Templates and Outlines; Housekeeping; Macro Hacks; Forms and Fields; Advanced Word Hacks; Word 2003 XML Hacks; Index

For those unfamiliar with the Hacks format... It consists of 100 tips, tricks, or unique ways of doing things with the subject at hand (like Word, Excel, etc.). The hacks are normally not things that you would find intuitively obvious, or even things that you thought were just flat-out impossible to do. In Word Hacks, the author (along with a number of contributors) takes you on a trip into the inner world of Word and uncovers a multitude of tricks you've probably never seen...

Wonder how to get IE to launch Word documents in Word? That's hack # 8. Need dummy text to fill out content in a document but you don't want to just type random characters? Check out #14. How about using Word as a Windows backup utility? Yes, you can do that, and hack #81 shows you how.

The thing I like most about this book is the profusion of VBA code to be found. For non-programmers, this might be a hindrance in that a lot of the hacks involve using the VBA code they supply. I can think of a number of potential readers who would be totally lost there. But for developers who use COM to manipulate Word from other software packages, this is a treasure trove of ideas. An excellent "R&D" resource... "Rob & Duplicate"! :-)

If you're an average user of Word or a power user who doesn't want to play with code, you'll get some value here. If you're a techno-geek who wants to program everything, this is your book. Highly recommended...
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Excellent - practical Word macros 10 Mar. 2013
By John New - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is an excellent resource if you're an advanced Word user who wants to use macros to make your Word life easier. In my case, I'm interested in running macros from the Ribbon interface to automate tasks and, being a technical writer, make it easier to use templates and styles. I was after a book with lots of Word tips and practical macro examples that I could use or adapt.

This book certainly fits the bill. The hacks are nicely organised into small usable chunks. Each hack has a description, complete code if applicable, and how to implement it. The book has a note about Word versions, saying that it works up to Word 2003. I was a bit nervous about buying the book for that reason - I was after a book that worked with Word 2007 and 2010. I haven't used a lot of the hacks yet, but so far so good - the ones I've used (with macro code) work fine.

For the real macro beginner, there's a helpful Macro 101 section. It's handy but I think if you want to make the most of this book, you'd have to know a little more than just 101. Mainly so that you could adapt macros if you wanted to or run them from the Ribbon or Quick Access Toolbar.

For my purposes, though, the book is great. Just what I need. And one I'm likely to dip into again and again to see if there's some practical code or advice. Recommended.
getting a little dated 24 Jun. 2014
By Wakka - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
There are a lot of places in the world where people are still running old versions of Windows, but if you're already running Word 2008, or 2010 or newer, some of the older "hacks" in this book aren't really necessary or have become obsolete.

There are some nice pre-packaged bits of VB Code for making specific macros -- some of the tricks I already knew, and some I thought were interesting but useful in only some extremely specific circumstances.

The "Hacks" title is a bit misleading. There are VB code examples, some ways to tweak Word's behavior on launch (autoexec type stuff) and some digging into lesser known features. No "hacks" or anything extreme that Word wasn't meant to do already, or isn't already part of regular VB code or macro-making. If you are looking to make a few macros and dip your toes into VB a little, it's a nice book for that and isn't too deeply technical.
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
Finally, A Practical Book on VBA and Word 24 July 2008
By Gregory S. Waddell - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I learn through practical examples. I hate those many many programming books out there that just give you the dry bones of how the functions, parameters, arrays, variables, data types, objects, and so on work together. Even if I might actually understand what they're saying, they still leave me scratching my head and saying: "Ok, I got it. Now why would anyone ever want to do that?"

This book is NOT like that at all. This is an adventure in programmatic praxiology. It is very well written and very well presented. I learned a ton of ways to actually use VBA with Word.
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