Friday, August 28, 2009

Shortcut to open Word 2007 References Panel – Alt+Click

I love keyboard shortcuts and accelerators. Usually I track them down on my own, once I've started using a feature often enough in an application to warrant it. But, every so often I'll accidentally hit just the right combination of keys in an application to launch a shortcut I wasn't aware of. Usually, it's something I don't really want (I often curse ctrl+d in word 2007, when I really meant to hit ctrl+s). Very rarely, however, it's for something I actually find useful. Today that turned out to be alt+click on a document in Word 2007. If you alt+click on a word, it will launch the references panel, providing instant access to a dictionary and thesaurus (and a host of other potentially useful reference tools).

One word of warning- I'd suggest against using this shortcut if you are working on a Word 2007 Blog Post. I just tried it to double-check something, and it seems to crash Word 2007 about half the time on blog documents. It seems perfectly stable in normal word documents.

Screen shot of reference panel open in word 2007

(By the way, I still haven't found a reasonable way to use images with Word 2007 + Blogger. I'm still manually coming in later and uplaoding images through the blogger interface. Has anyone figured this out yet?)