Distraction Test

Posted on August 28, 2016 By

Imagine going to the Louvre to see the Mona Lisa. You marvel at the model’s mysterious facial expression surrounded by a peaceful country scene, her hands folded serenely over a period armchair, and your traveling companion says, “I wonder what they use here to keep the floors so shiny?” If your formatting is too distracting, your readers may be thinking the same thing as they read your report. (more…)

Validator Messages


Suspense-Is-Killing-Me Test

Posted on August 21, 2016 By

Reports, proposals, contracts, user guides, and academic papers—all these forms of technical non-fiction are difficult enough to read under the best of circumstances. Are you making the difficulty worse by forcing your readers to guess where critical text is in your manuscript? (more…)

Validator Messages


Number of repeated spaces

Posted on August 19, 2016 By

Impact

Pressing Space several times to give the appearance of centered text or text in columns increases document maintenance and introduces pagination errors.

  • It’s unlikely that the spaces actually line up to precisely center or align the text.
  • The appearance of being centered or aligned is lost if you do any of the following:
    • Add text to a paragraph.
    • Change the page margins.
    • Change the font size.
  • Repeated spaces throughout a paragraph may result in word wrap that causes one of the lines to appear indented inside the paragraph.

Fixing This Error

There are several ways to fix this error; here is one of them. (If you need assistance fixing this or any other error in your Word file, send it to info@mswordsupport.com. We will provide a diagnosis and general remediation guidance.)
Note: The following procedure replaces all runs of two or more spaces—including those following a period.

  1. Open the Find and Replace dialog box by pressing Ctrl + H.
  2. Click More. Additional search options appear.

settings for replacing repeated spaces

  1. In the Find what field, press Space, and type {2,}.
  2. Click inside the Replace with field and press Space.
  3. Mark the Use wildcards checkbox.
  4. Click Replace, and inspect each occurrence to replace. Insert tabs, apply paragraph formatting, or place text inside tables as necessary—depending on your original intent for using the repeated spaces.

Validator Messages


Carpal-Tunnel Test

Posted on August 16, 2016 By

When you use a word processor, do you press the Tab or Space key several times to center paragraphs? Do you press the Enter key twice to ensure there is space between paragraphs? Are you frequently clicking the ribbon buttons B, U, and I? If you do, you’re in danger, so read on.
(more…)

Tests for Poor Word Processing Habits


Number of non-breaking spaces

Posted on August 4, 2016 By

Impact

A non-breaking space prevents wrapping between two words. Non-breaking spaces are useful when you want to keep two words together on the same line, such Figure 6 or 8 p.m. However, incorrectly placed non-breaking spaces result in poor word wrapping. (more…)

Validator Messages


Number of empty paragraphs (excludes empty table cells)

Posted on July 18, 2016 By

Impact

Pressing Enter one or more times gives the appearance of spacing between paragraphs. This technique creates “empty paragraphs” and can lead to the following pagination errors:

(more…)

Validator Messages


Number of above or below spacing overrides

Posted on July 18, 2016 By

Impact

Adding spacing above or below a paragraph increases document maintenance.

  • If you want to add spacing to all of your body paragraphs, you need to place the cursor in each of them and apply the spacing.
  • If you want to change the spacing of your body paragraphs, you need to once again place the cursor in each of them and apply the new spacing.
  • Pressing Enter causes the following paragraph to have the same spacing, even if you don’t want it to. For example, if you added spacing to a heading, and pressed Enter to type a body paragraph, the body paragraph has the same spacing as the heading.

    Fixing This Error

    There are several ways to fix this error; here is one of them. (If you need assistance fixing this or any other error in your Word file, send it to info@mswordsupport.com. We will provide a diagnosis and general remediation guidance.)
    1. Identify an existing style that has the spacing you need. If your document doesn’t have a style with the required spacing, modify an existing one or create a new one. For details, see Creating Paragraph Styles.
    2. Open the Find and Replace dialog box by pressing Ctrl + H.

    replace_paragraph_spacing

    1. Click More. Additional search options appear.
    2. Click inside the Find what field.
    3. Click Format, and then select Paragraph…. The Find Paragraph dialog box appears.

    paragraph_formatting_spacing

    1. Type values for the spacing you want to find. For example, if your validation report indicates you have an override Style: Normal, Before: 12 pt, type 12 pt in the Before field.
    2. Click OK. You return to the Find and Replace dialog box.
    3. Click Format, and then select Style…. The Find Style dialog box appears.

    find_style_normal

    1. Select the style that is overridden. For example, if your validation report indicates you have an override Style: Normal, Before: 12 pt, select Normal.
    2. Click OK. You return to the Find and Replace dialog box.
    3. Click inside the Replace with field.
    4. Click Format, and then select Style…. The Replace Style dialog box appears.
    5. Select the style you identified in step 1, and click OK. You return to the Find and Replace dialog box.
    6. Click Replace, and inspect each occurrence to replace.

Validator Messages


Number of alignment overrides

Posted on July 18, 2016 By

Impact

Clicking the alignment buttons on the ribbon increases document maintenance.

ribbon_align

  • If you want to right-align all of your headings, you need to place the cursor in each of them and click the alignment buttons.
  • If you want to change the alignment those paragraphs, you need to once again place the cursor in each of them and click the alignment buttons.
  • Pressing Enter causes the following paragraph to have the same alignment, even if you don’t want it to. For example, if you right-aligned a heading, and pressed Enter to type a body paragraph, the body paragraph has the alignment of the heading.

Fixing This Error

There are several ways to fix this error; here is one of them. (If you need assistance fixing this or any other error in your Word file, send it to info@mswordsupport.com. We will provide a diagnosis and general remediation guidance.)
  1. Identify an existing style that has the alignments you need. If your document doesn’t have a style with the required alignment, modify an existing one or create a new one. For details, see Creating Paragraph Styles.
  2. Open the Find and Replace dialog box by pressing Ctrl + H.
  3. Click More. Additional search options appear.

replace_paragraph_alignment

  1. Click inside the Find what field.
  2. Click Format, and then select Paragraph…. The Find Paragraph dialog box appears.
  3. Select the alignment you want to find. For example, if your validation report indicates you have an override Style: Normal, Right, select Right in the Alignment field.

paragraph_formatting_alignment

  1. Click OK. You return to the Find and Replace dialog box.
  2. Click Format, and then select Style…. The Find Style dialog box appears.

find_style_normal

  1. Select the style that is overridden. For example, if your validation report indicates you have an override Style: Normal, Right, select Normal.
  2. Click OK. You return to the Find and Replace dialog box.
  3. Click inside the Replace with field.
  4. Click Format, and then select Style…. The Replace Style dialog box appears.
  5. Select the style you identified in step 1, and click OK. You return to the Find and Replace dialog box.
  6. Click Replace, and inspect each occurrence to replace.

Validator Messages


Number of automatically numbered graphics

Posted on July 18, 2016 By

Impact

The number of graphics is significantly higher than the number of automatically numbered graphics. As a result, your file may have several graphics without automatically numbered captions. Depending on the number of graphics, this can greatly reduce document readability.

  • The images may have duplicate or missing numbers in the captions.
  • Cross references to the images may indicate the wrong number.

Fixing This Error

There are several ways to fix this error; here is one of them. (If you need assistance fixing this or any other error in your Word file, send it to info@mswordsupport.com. We will provide a diagnosis and general remediation guidance.)
  • Open the Find and Replace dialog box by pressing Ctrl + G.
  • go_to_graphic_first

    1. From the Go to what, select Graphic.
    2. In the Enter graphic number field, type 1.
    3. Click Go To.
    4. If the graphic needs an automatically numbered caption, do the following:
      1. Click References > Insert Caption.
      2. In the Caption dialog box, make settings appropriate for your document, and then click OK.
    5. Press Ctrl + PageDown to advance to the next graphic.
    6. Repeat steps 5–6 for all graphics.

    Validator Messages


    Number of automatically numbered tables

    Posted on July 18, 2016 By

    Impact

    The number of tables in your document is significantly higher than the number of automatically numbered captions. As a result, your file may have several tables without automatically numbered captions. Depending on the number of tables, this can greatly reduce document readability.

    • The tables may have duplicate or missing numbers in the captions.
    • Cross references to the tables may indicate the wrong number.

    Fixing This Error

    There are several ways to fix this error; here is one of them. (If you need assistance fixing this or any other error in your Word file, send it to info@mswordsupport.com. We will provide a diagnosis and general remediation guidance.)
    1. Open the Find and Replace dialog box by pressing Ctrl + G.

    go_to_table_first

    1. From Go to what, select Table.
    2. In the Enter table number field, type 1.
    3. Click Go To.
    4. If the table needs an automatically numbered caption, do the following:
      1. Click References > Insert Caption.
      2. In the Caption dialog box, make settings appropriate for your document, and then click OK.
    5. Press Ctrl + PageDown to advance to the next table.
    6. Repeat steps 5–6 for all tables.

    Validator Messages