Adding Periods to Lists

A book I recently edited had lots of lists–with no terminal punctuation. The lists looked something like this:

1. Text of the first item

2. Text of the second item

3. Text of the third item

As I worked, I found myself jumping to the end of each line and typing in a period, like this:

1. Text of the first item.

2. Text of the second item

3. Text of the third item

Then this:

1. Text of the first item.

2. Text of the second item.

3. Text of the third item

And finally this:

1. Text of the first item.

2. Text of the second item.

3. Text of the third item.

After two or three lists, I realized how silly this was. The solution is elementary, but I suspect that many readers haven’t thought of it. Here it is:

1. Select all the items in your list, including the paragraph mark on the final item.

2. Click Edit > Replace.

3. In the Find What box, enter this (the code for a paragraph mark):


4. In the Replace With box enter this (a period followed by the code for a paragraph mark):


5. Click Replace All.

6. If Word asks if you want to search the rest of your document, click No; all you want to search is the list you selected.

That should do the trick.

And, of course, if you want to *remove* periods rather than add them, follow the same procedure but swap the contents of the Find What and Replace with boxes.



Rob Dilworth wrote:

After Adobe Acrobat Professional 7 was installed on a colleague’s PC, he noticed that he could no longer customize his toolbars in Word. Specifically, if he removed a button from a toolbar or tried to add a template that added a button/pull-down menu to his menu bar, the customizations only lasted as long as his session in Word. Once he started Word again, the customizations were gone.

For the record, here are the workarounds for the problem that Acrobat creates in customizing toolbars in Word:

* If the Acrobat add-ins (Adobe PDF and Acrobat Comments) are in Word, the user can save customizations to Word’s toolbars by holding Shift on the keyboard; then, in the menu, by pressing File > Save All.

* The add-ins can be removed from Word by going into the Windows Registry. If the add-ins are removed, then Word works without any problems. Here’s how to remove the add-ins:

Run: regedit. Then go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE > SOFTWARE > Microsoft > Office > Word > Addins. Then click LoadBehavior and set the value at 0. Once the value is set at 0, the add-ins won’t load in Word.

Thanks, Rob!



Have you checked out the reviewing features in Adobe Acrobat 7 Professional? If not, you really should. You can try the program free for thirty days. I’ll be writing an article on these features in the near future:

Before installing, be sure to see the Readers Write column above.

Michael Coleman wrote:

I have a minor problem that I thought you might find interesting. Whenever I hold down shift and control at the same time, then let them go, it acts as a keyboard shortcut for formatting the paragraph I’m in as right-to-left. This is described in the Help file:


Keyboard shortcuts for right-to-left formatting

The feature described in this Help topic is only available if support for a right-to-left language, such as Arabic, is enabled through Microsoft Office Language Settings. In addition, you must be running a Microsoft Windows operating system that has right-to-left support–for example, Microsoft Windows 2000.

CTRL+RIGHT SHIFT: Activate right-to-left paragraph direction

CTRL+LEFT SHIFT: Activate left-to-right paragraph direction


It’s actually kind of neat, and I’m sure I’ll find a use for it at some point. But I find that I use that key combination often–starting to use the arrows to highlight text and then changing my mind. I’d like to get rid of the shortcut or assign it to a more reasonable key combination. When I check the keyboard shortcuts, it’s not listed.

Do you, gentle reader, have a solution for Michael?

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