by Jack Lyon
Nearly a year ago, I explained some secrets of Microsoft Word’s Ribbon interface (see Lyonizing Word: Secrets of the Ribbon), including two-part buttons like the one that activates FileCleaner in Editor’s ToolKit Plus 2014.
At first glance, this button looks ordinary, with a graphic icon at the top and a tiny arrow at the bottom:
Click the arrow, and you’ll get a dropdown list of FileCleaner’s features:
What many people don’t realize, however, is that the FileCleaner button is a two-part button. If you hover your cursor over the button, you’ll see a horizontal line splitting the button in two:
The bottom half, with the arrow, works just as before. But the top part is a different matter. If you click it, you’ll get full access to all of FileCleaner’s batch cleanup options:
Microsoft Word’s Ribbon interface includes quite a few two-part buttons, but if you don’t know about them, you may not be using Word as efficiently as you could. There’s no sure way to spot them without hovering your mouse pointer over them, although they always include a tiny black arrow (as do many one-part buttons). A good example is the Paste button on the Ribbon’s Home tab:
If you hover your mouse pointer over that button, you’ll see that it has two parts:
Click the part with the arrow, and you’ll have access to various paste options. Pretty neat!
So what other buttons have two parts? Here is the complete list, along with the default options you’ll see if you click each button’s arrow (as opposed to its icon). Please note that what you’ll see may vary depending on what’s going on in Word.
Text Highlight Color
Citations & Bibliography > Styles
Comments > Delete
Tracking > Display for Review
Tracking > Reviewing Pane
Tracking > Track Changes
Changes > Accept
Changes > Reject
Macros > Macros
I believe that’s all of them, although there’s one that’s not on the Ribbon that you should be aware of — the Undo button, which you’ll see at the top left of your Word window:
Here, you can select items en masse and undo them. Is that useful? Maybe sometimes.
One thing you can say about Microsoft Word: It’s not lacking in features. If anything, it has more features than most people will ever use (see Lyonizing Word: The Right Tool for the Job). I hope this article will help you find some useful features that you may not currently be aware of.
Jack Lyon (firstname.lastname@example.org) owns and operates the Editorium, which provides macros and information to help editors and publishers do mundane tasks quickly and efficiently. He is the author of Microsoft Word for Publishing Professionals, Wildcard Cookbook for Microsoft Word, and of Macro Cookbook for Microsoft Word. Both books will help you learn more about macros and how to use them.