Keep your fingers on the keys

Of all the applications that are important to you and your supported users, Microsoft Word 2000 is probably most frequently open on your company's desktops. Therefore, any tips or tricks that can save valuable time and effort offer big productivity paybacks. Although Word has a friendly GUI, the application's primary focus is the keyboard. The more you can accomplish without taking your hands off the keyboard, the more productive you can be. In this Top 10, I share my favorite Word 2000 keyboard shortcuts. For a complete list of Word 2000 keyboard shortcuts, see the Microsoft article "WD2000: Keyboard Shortcuts for Microsoft Word" (http://support.microsoft.com/support/kb/articles/q211/9/82.asp).

10. Clipboard shortcuts—Like most Windows programs, Word supports the stalwart clipboard shortcuts Cut (Ctrl+X), Copy (Ctrl+C), and Paste (Ctrl+V). In addition, pressing Ctrl+C twice is a shortcut to Word's Clipboard dialog box, in which you can select items to paste from Word's multiple-clipboard feature.

9. Edit shortcuts—Undo (Ctrl+Z) and Redo (Ctrl+Y) are two of Word's most essential and frequently used features. The Ctrl+Z shortcut undoes your most recent edit, and repeatedly pressing this shortcut backs you through your changes. Ctrl+Y lets you quickly repeat your most recent edit.

8. Cursor-movement shortcuts—The cursor-movement keys let you quickly position your cursor at different locations within the line you're working on. The Home key positions the cursor at the beginning of the line, and the End key positions the cursor at the end of the line. You can use Ctrl+Right Arrow and Ctrl+Left Arrow to move the cursor forward or backward one word at a time.

7. Text-selection shortcuts—To quickly select the text between the current cursor position and the end of the line, press Shift+End. To select the text between the current cursor position and the end of the paragraph, press Ctrl+Shift+Down Arrow. Finally, to select the entire document's text, press Ctrl+A.

6. Formatting shortcuts—You can use the keyboard to quickly apply formatting changes to selected text. Ctrl+B sets the formatting to bold, Ctrl+I italicizes the text, and Ctrl+U underlines the text. To display the font-selection dialog box, press Ctrl+D. These shortcuts are especially useful when you combine them with the text-selection shortcuts.

5. Date, time, and page-numbering shortcuts—You can use the Alt+Shift+D key combination to quickly enter the current date into a document. You can use the similar Alt+Shift+T combination to enter the current time. The Alt+Shift+P shortcut inserts the current page number.

4. Capitalization shortcut—One of the handier keyboard shortcuts, Shift+F3 lets you toggle a selected word's capitalization. You can switch between lowercase, initial capitalization, and all uppercase.

3. Comments and Track Changes shortcuts—These shortcuts are handy if you work on shared documents that multiple people revise. The Ctrl+Alt+M shortcut lets you insert a comment at the current cursor position. The Ctrl+Shift+E shortcut toggles the Track Changes feature on and off.

2. Find shortcuts—If you want to quickly find a text string in the current document, you can press Ctrl+F to display Word's Find dialog box. To repeat your most recent Find action, press Shift+F4.

1. Windowing shortcuts—I frequently use Word's window-splitting capability to simultaneously view different sections of a document. The Ctrl+Alt+S shortcut splits the document into two windows, starting from the current cursor location. To return to one window, press Alt+Shift+C.