Welcome to Grace's Mosaic Moments!
I’ve been busy transplanting roses this week—and, believe me, if you’ve never done it, that’s a LOT of work. I also had to learn a new skill, the cordless electric power drill, in order to deal with the huge new plastic planters that come with molded words on the bottom: “Drill holes for drainage”! Which is why I’m posting a code list, long on my web site, instead of coming up with something new today. Hopefully, there are a few of you out there who haven’t seen this list before.
The original is 2 columns at 1.5 spacing. If you would like a compact, printable copy, please e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“Way, way back in ages dark”—I believe that’s how the old song goes—in this case back in early computer days, when IBM’s dedicated word processing machine cost $10,000 and boasted 256K of memory (when my son’s first PC had 16K), programmers built in certain codes to help users around the world type characters that weren’t on the QWERTY keyboard. My IBM word processor, I must add, could actually change keyboards, typing in a multitude of languages from around the world. But poor little PCs couldn’t.
And as PCs grew and grew and grew, those codes stayed in place in the programming. You could say they were “grandfathered in.” Some are obsolete, like lines for painstakingly building a “box.” Some are still obviously with us—you see them on the right-hand side of every Windows menu. Others, very useful, are more elusive. For example:
PAGE END. I only recently discovered that many people don’t know how to make a quick Page End that will stay through every format. Perhaps that’s the reason some people are still making a separate document for each chapter, a major time-waster when you try to put it all together. Plus the difficulty of searching for something in the manuscript you need to know, such as, “What color did I say his eyes were?”
Ctrl + Enter. That’s all your need. You can take a manuscript from Word Perfect to RTF to MS Word (or the reverse), and that Page End will still be right where you put it. And you don’t have to go into a Windows Menu to do it.
Below is a list of some of the old codes I’ve found particularly handy. Yes, you can get most of these through a Windows Menu, but the codes are faster, and there are a few below you won’t find anywhere else. Hopefully, you’ll discover something in there that’s helpful.
Thanks for stopping by. See you next week.
Note: To make these codes work, use your Keypad with “Num Lock” ON.
Press Alt + the number.
There are many more 2-4 digit codes, but most are alphabet, borders, math, Greek, etc. Undoubtedly, anyone taking the time to experiment can find a whole slew more.
Grace, who writes as Blair Bancroft and Daryn Parke
www.blairbancroft.com & www.darynparke.com