Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Trouble With Word

I had a very frustrating evening. Finn and Claire are in Toronto so I had the whole evening to write. I was getting down to exploring why the notion of "handbooks" is excluded from recent literature on the human information behaviour of engineers--gripping, I know--when I ran into an old nemesis.

The apostrophe/quote key stopped working. Or rather, it was working but not doing what I wanted. Instead of providing the requested apostrophe/quote it started doing nothing. On the second stroke, however, I would get two apostrophes in a row. Furthermore, on certain occassions it would serve up an "e" with an accent grave. The whole situation was very frustrating and I was unable to rapidly Google a solution as I had on previous occassions.

Here's the thing: in searching for a solution, I was misled. My search rapidly produced results about the perils of "curly quotes" as compared to "straight quotes." Wrong direction. My problem was really around the accent grave. In fact, I had somehow convinced Word that I was using a French keyboard.

The solution: I customized my toolbars to include the keyboard settings for language. I customized the format toolbar to include the mysterious "EN" button. I'm not sure why, but it fixed the problem.

A colleague suggested alt+shift may work. Next time.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Arundell's Poor Penmanship

From what I've seen, the Honeyman Ramelli is quite an interesting document. Unfortunately, the notes left by Arundell are almost illegible. Compared to the marginalia left by his contemporary--Gabriel Harvey--Arundell's comments aren't readable. Alas, I suppose we must all feel some pain for our research.