Shake It Off

Got a little tip for ya. Do you ever get into Windows overload? Too many windows open and you need to focus on just the one you're working on? Click on the title bar of the window you want to keep, hold and shake. All other windows will be minimized and out of your way.
Do you just need to get to that icon on your desktop and everything is in the way? No need to minimize each window individually or even use the tip above. Just click the Windows key+D to get to your desktop without leaving your keyboard.

Fill Info in Excel in a Flash


Did you know that Excel 2013 and 2016 have a built in feature to help you fill and format columns of info? It's called Flash Fill and it does just what it says it does. I love finding new tips and sharing them.
How long did it take you figure out how to separate names by using a long formula to find the "," character and then pull info from the left or right of that? Or better yet, the faster way of using Text to Columns to separate the text. Well, now there's an even quicker way.
Start off with a column of info, such as names and make sure the headers are formatted differently to help Excel know where to look for the patterns in data. In this case, I'm using Last Name, First Name. Start a new column to the right for First Name. Type the first one like you want it and hit Enter to go to the next line. Start typing the next one and you'll see a grey-out list of suggestions pop up. If you like it, hit Enter. Boom! Your column is already filled. Do the same for the last names.
If this is not working automatically for you, check Excel's options in the backstage view. Go to File> Options> Advanced and scroll to Editing Options. Check the box for "Automatically Flash Fill". You can also force it to work by typing the first entry and then hitting Ctrl+E.
You may have some rows that Excel doesn't quite know what do with. Yes, I just ended a sentence with a preposition. Maybe some will have initials or middle names. Just go to those cells and make the entry and the rest will fill in for you.
Try separating the raw data of 123121234 into 123-12-1234.
Phone numbers: 5551231234 to (555) 123-1234
Is your original data in ALL CAPS or all lower case? Type the first cell in the Proper Case and it will be corrected for you. ESTHER, POLLY becomes Polly Esther.
Have a mix of initials and middle names?
  • JEST, SHIRLEY U. becomes Shirley U. | Jest
  • brown, jim ed becomes Jim E. | Brown
As with most features in Excel, there are multiple ways to accomplish most tasks. You could format phone numbers, social security numbers and zip codes with the Special number format, but Flash Fill handles this without having to use the mouse or click through several dialog boxes. It's nice to have options.

OneNote Training

It's been a little while since I've done a OneNote training at the City, but I'll be doing one today. This may be a bit of a small class, but I do love teaching, so I'm good.  This way I can tailor the class to the attendees' needs. Since I do the class all on OneNote, I don't have a printed guide. So I can skip what they already know.  I'm glad when someone brings their own devices because they can log in as themselves and not just as a training account.


Learn OneNote Conference 2018 Kicks Off

The Learn OneNote Conference officially starts today. I'm so excited to be a part of this 3rd Annual event!  If you haven't signed u...