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Is there a way to make Word 365 behave like a typewriter?

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#1
sue.words

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I have been using Office 365 (mainly Word) on a MacBook for a few months. I am still struggling a bit because my previous Office software was Office for Mac 2011 and the two versions of 

Word are very different, especially if, like me, you have enjoyed making use of fairly advanced stuff such as S&R, macros and clever bits of layout.

 

My husband has a PC laptop with Windows 10 and Office 365. He hates computers as much as I love them. He has no patience to learn how to do things and needs me to be this resident IT first-aider. (To be fair, he is my resident mechanical first-aider; he is very clever and practical and if, for example, my printer goes wrong, IF it's a hardware problem he is much better at dealing with it than I am, and he can do everything with wood, plumbing, electrics, etc.)

 

A long time ago we used to have a Canon Starwriter, and he got on well with that because it was much like a glorified electric typewriter. If he could still get such a thing, he'd really like one of those again. BUT, because I'm better at spelling, grammar and words than he is, we often want to work on the same document, he on his computer and me on mine, each working on it in turn and then emailing it to the other for revision. So, even if we could get a Starwriter, I want anything he wants me to revise and edit to be compatible with Word.

 

Does anything exist that he could use with Word to make it much simpler to use? (Or even, at a pinch, without Word?)

 

Let me give the example of his difficulties that happened half an hour ago and prompted me to post this SOS. (It has happened before, it's not a one-off.)

 

He wants to type an address in the course of a document, not at the top of a letter, and he's annoyed that the computer inserts extra line space between the lines of the address. I explain that this is because the computer thinks each line is a new paragraph and is doing paragraph spacing. I say we just need to check how to do a soft return. He says he doesn't want to learn how to do this – "I'll never remember". He wants to do a carriage return to go to the next line and do it twice or more for a bigger space.

 

Before coming to my tried and tested friend Geeks to Go, I did a Google and found something called Typewriter.exe. It looked as if it could be useful for what I want, but I am very nervous about downloading a program file without any guidance as to whether it could be harmful. I don't know how useful it would be, but you can try it before you buy it and it's not very expensive if you do buy it. But I'd like to be reassured before I do anything.

 

I'd be so grateful for some advice.


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#2
iammykyl

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Gday Sue, 

See if this article helps you collaborating on word docs, > https://www.godaddy....-collaboration/

 

A computer keyboard operates the same as an old typewriter, with extra functions.

The Enter key functions as a carriage return when entering text, one press gets

this,

2 press gets 

 

this

 

The backspace key functions the same as a typewriter but, wipes the last letter out every time pressed, so you can enter a new letter/number. 


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#3
sue.words

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iammykyl, I really appreciate your responding to my post but I'm not sure you have quite understood what I'm hoping to achieve for Paul. Something he says again and again is "This computer has got a mind of its own." I know that feeling and I'm sure you do too. I expect everyone who uses a computer does. But when most of us experience something happening we didn't intend we look into possible causes in a systematic way. Paul would do this with physical things but not with computers. with computers her just gets exasperated . He doesn't want "extra functions" because that has to becustomized.

 

We get on ok with collaborating on a document using email or We Transfer to take it to and fro between our computers. The only reason I mentioned both of us working on the same document was that I definitely would much prefer anything Paul wants me to check over and edit to be in a format compatible with Word.

 

I am puzzled that you say this:

 

The Enter key functions as a carriage return when entering text, one press gets

this,

2 press gets 

 

this

 

Tecause that does not seem to be the default on our PC. (I have spent the last ten minutes experimenting on the PC and the Mac. Puzzlingly, the Mac seems to do what you say it will when the Paragraph setting is the default one. The PC, on the other hand, on a Paragraph setting ostensibly the same, produces a 2-line space if you press Enter.

 

I'm sorry, it's gone midnight and I'm dropping asleep.  This must be all for the moment.


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#4
iammykyl

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Sorry, should have said. The Enter key functions the same as the carriage return lever on a typewriter, when entering text,

and should have given you more lines of text as examples.

 

Hard Break.   Pressing enter, while typing in word, moves the cursor down 2 lines., giving 1 blank line, (Default)

 

Michael.

 

300 Park Lane.

 

Hemmant.

 

4174.

 

Soft Break.   Holding down Shift key and pressing enter, moves the cursor to the next line, no blank line (Default)

 

Michael.

300 Park Lane.

Hemmant.

4174

 

There are ways to change the defaults, but you are then changing Style/formatting and could run into problems when editing the doc on another computer.


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#5
sue.words

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Sorry, Michael, the point is this: I know how to do all sorts of things in Word, but Paul doesn't. I look upon discovering how to do things as an exciting challenge but he is just annoyed when things are not as he expects them to be. 

 

What I would love to find would be a general way of using Word so that all these options were just not there!

 

Thank you again

Sue


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#6
iammykyl

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Apart from going back to a typewriter and scanning the page into a computer, there is no program that does not have options to customize the interface..   Every program requires the user to learn how to use it.

Open Office Writer does perform a Soft Break when pressing Enter. Download the full version only, don't download langauge packs. 

https://www.openoffice.org/download/  


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