The most common complaint I hear from legal professionals who've started using Word is, "I miss Reveal Codes!"
Yes, that ALT-F3 command was genius. No doubt about it.
But what most users don't know is there's something similar in Word. In some ways, it's better. (Intrigued?)
In Word, the nearest equivalent to Reveal Codes is Reveal Formatting. It's a pane that sits on the right-hand side of the screen:
If you highlight a block of text (or even put your cursor in the middle of a word), Reveal Formatting will tell you how that text is formatted -- what font, what paragraph settings (indentation, alignment/justification, etc.), what paper size and margins the document has, everything.
How do you see this magic pane? Press SHIFT-F1 in Word 2007 and up.
Here's a nice touch: You see how the section headings (Font, Alignment, etc.) are hyperlinked blue underlining)? That means that, if you want to change any settings, you can simply click on that hyperlink, and Word will take you directly to the appropriate menu. Brilliant! (This works better if you have a block of text highlighted rather than just having your cursor sitting in the middle.)
And here's the best part (and unless I'm mistaken, WordPerfect won't even do this): You can compare the formatting between two different sections of text. This feature helps diagnose formatting problems ("why is this paragraph so funky and the other one's okay?").
Here are the basic steps:
- Highlight the first block of text you want to examine.
- Check the Compare to another selection box.
- Highlight the second block of text, the one you want to compare the first to.
And here's some video to show you how:
Voila! Word now tells you all the differences between the first block and the second, enabling you to diagnose any formatting issues.