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Mysteriously Moving Margins in Word

In Microsoft Word 2008 (and older versions), if you put your cursor in a paragraph and then move a tab or indent marker in the ruler, the change applies to just that paragraph. If your markers are closely spaced, you may have trouble grabbing the right one, and inadvertently work with tabs when you want to work with indents, or vice-versa. The solution is to hover your mouse over the marker until a yellow tooltip confirms which element you're about to drag.

I recently came to appreciate the importance of waiting for those tooltips: a document mysteriously reset its margins several times while I was under deadline pressure, causing a variety of problems. After several hours of puzzlement, I had my "doh!" moment: I had been dragging a margin marker when I thought I was dragging an indent marker.

When it comes to moving markers in the Word ruler, the moral of the story is always to hover, read, and only then drag.

 
 

No Email Issue on 27 May 2013 for Memorial Day

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Between next Monday’s Memorial Day holiday in the United States and numerous family commitments for TidBITS staffers, we’re taking a brief break from our email issue next week. We’ll continue publishing on our Web site in the meantime, of course, which means that if you miss your TidBITS fix via email, you can also follow along via RSS (full text for TidBITS members), Twitter, App.net, Facebook, and our iOS app. And if you’d like to take advantage of the time to catch up on some back issues, they’re all available online. The next email issue of TidBITS will appear on 3 June 2013.

 

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