Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Unwiring Word

Microsoft Word has an Internet addiction. If I copy online text containing a link into a Word document, it automatically makes the link active. I never want active links in my Word documents, though, so I have to gingerly find and deactivate the hyperlink. (Why "gingerly"? Because accidently clicking on the unwanted link will activate it, forcing my browser to fire up and, sometimes, Word to freeze.) I have not found a way to turn off this ridiculous "feature" yet, alas.

It gets worse. I like to hand-code my HTML. When I open my HTML documents in Word, it insists on pretending it is a browser and displays them in a very rough approximation of what you might see online. I cannot figure out how to disable that "feature" either, but it at least only annoys me. Here's the really infuriating bit: When I toggle the document to display the HTML source, I discover that Word has replaced my lean and elegant coding with ugly, unnecessary, and inscrutable garbage! And I cannot get rid off it! Instead, I have to open the page in a browser, view the source, copy, and paste that into Word.

I welcome any advice about how to unwire Word. I happen to use Microsoft Word X for Service Release 1. I'll bet, though, that I could learn from a fix developed for other versions.


Tom W. Bell said...

Thanks, Joel, but that won't suffice. I'm trying to keep pasted-in links from becoming active, whereas the option you describe (apparently) only controls whether a typed-in link becomes active.

Yeah, I could use TextPad, but I like the search and replace feature in Word. TP--or at least the last version of it I used--didn't offer that.

Lizriz: I suppose because Microsoft thought the 'net was going to eat its lunch, and saw the proper response as weaving such features into its apps--sort of a "keep your enemies close" strategy.

Amy said...

You want the AutoFormat tab, not the AutoFormat As You Type tab. There, you should be able to uncheck "Internet and network paths with hyperlinks" and get it to stop activating links for text you paste. I just tested it, and it appears to work.

Tom W. Bell said...

Thankis, Amy, but even that doesn't do what I want. Maybe your program behaves differentlt, but mine still makes active links I copy from a website and paste into Word.