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  1. #1
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    Extra style names (2002/SP3)

    I share a document with other users (I'm not sure they're all on Word 2002, but most of them are).

    Every so often, the style "Body Text" is renamed "Body Text,bt,Body Text Hang,BT". I am sure no one has renamed the style intentionally. What causes this phenomenon, and how can I prevent it?

    Many thanks,
    Erik

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    Re: Extra style names (2002/SP3)

    It is possible to have an alias for a style. Some people use this as a shortcut. If you put the cursor in the stylebox on the formatting toolbar after the style "Body Text", you can type a comma & a shortcut & press <enter>. "bt" is a common shortcut that people type. So one person may add ",bt" as their shortcut; the next person may add "Body Text Hang,BT". This is a feature, so on a shared document you'll have difficulty preventing it. It would not be a good idea to disable their toolbars, if it were possible. You could send them a memo, but...

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    Re: Extra style names (2002/SP3)

    Thank you for the explanation. My follow-up question is only speculative: why would someone create an alias that is longer than the original style name (eg, "Body Text Hang" for "Body Text")?

    A less speculative question might be: is there any feature in Word (97 to 2003) that would create style aliases automatically, perhaps in response to perceived user behavior?

  4. #4
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    Re: Extra style names (2002/SP3)

    I have seen this happen when copying text from web pages and pasting it into word documents. This commonly creates styles such as Heading 1, H1

    StuartR

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    Re: Extra style names (2002/SP3)

    I was assuming that Body Text Hang was the name of the style & that someone added "BT" to that. I guess I didn't explain what I meant very well. In any event, Stuarts scenerio seems like a likely culprit.

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    Re: Extra style names (2002/SP3)

    What is probably happening is that people are copying in content from another file where the aliases are defined for those styles.
    If I have document A with the style 'Body Text' and document B with the style 'Body Text, Body Text Hang, B1, B2, B3' and then I copy some content out of document B into document A then all the aliases are introduced to document A.

    As an aside, one possible reason for people creating aliases that are actually longer than the original name is...
    Say you have two documents that you wanted to merge together and when you did, you wanted to map the odd style names from the second document into the first document. If you do a straight copy and paste then you are adding all those new styles. However, if you add aliases into the receiving document before copying in the content from the other file then the styles get merged as they come in and no new styles are added.

    An example of this is...
    document A contains a style called 'query'
    document B contains a style called 'question'
    document C1 contains a style called 'enquiry'
    document C2 contains a style called 'enquiry, query, question'

    Now I want to paste content from doc A and doc B into each of the doc Cs.
    In doc C1 I get three styles with the same purpose - which is not so good
    In doc C2 I get all the styles merged into one style - this file is much easier to manage now.
    Andrew Lockton, Chrysalis Design, Melbourne Australia

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    Re: Extra style names (2002/SP3)

    Thanks Andrew for that elucidation. If I have colleagues who are defining style aliases, that means I must have colleagues who, against my expectations (this is why I thought Word was doing it automatically), actually know what styles are! Cause for hope.

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    Re: Extra style names (2002/SP3)

    I can dash your hopes and mention that when I see this, usually it is a demonstration that no-one ever creates content from scratch and always finds an old document to paste content in from. Spawned style aliases demonstrate the authors skills in sourcing out of date material which was originally created by someone that knew what a style was. The lineage of content is demonstrated by these aliases - DNA for content.

    You can test this theory by following in the footsteps of your forefathers (foreworkers) and creating an odd style alias in a document and distributing it to your colleagues and then keep an eye out for when that alias appears in unrelated documents for that feeling of having fulfilled your evolutionary destiny. Of course, don't feel pressured to create content from scratch, just copy and paste it from someone elses file - but clean up the aliases so they don't get the credit. <img src=/S/sneaky.gif border=0 alt=sneaky width=15 height=15>
    Andrew Lockton, Chrysalis Design, Melbourne Australia

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    Re: Extra style names (2002/SP3)

    In my experience, changing user behavior at that level is nearly impossible. Into the bargain, not all of the people involved are in my office. This is why I was hoping there was an automated option I could uncheck. No such luck, though.

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    Re: Extra style names (2002/SP3)

    If I understand your problem correctly, you could cut down on the styles changing by using the EDIT - PASTE SPECIAL feature. You copy the text from the source and put the cursor where you want to paste in the destination document then select EDIT - PASTE SPECIAL - UNFORMATTED TEXT which will paste normal text into the new text without bringing in any styles or formatting from the source. The trick is getting other people in your office to do the same so they don't mess up your work. I have the same problem in my office. Another option would be to give them a button on the toolbar for PASTE SPECIAL. If you need instructions, please let me know.

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