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January 24, 2017

Working on a new feature: Document Report/Overview

For those technical authors (like myself) and other power Word users, there comes a time when you get a document which contains all manner of errors and problems that you need to take a step back and work out what needs fixing before diving in there.

My toolbox can help you fix those problems, but it would be better if you initially had some kind of overview ‘report’ on what is actually inside it. Whilst you can print out a list of the styles used with verbose details galore about each one, Word doesn’t offer much more.

So, to help plug this gap, the next feature to be added to my toolbox is the Report one. It’s not fully working as such, in  that it will only extract the basics such as the standard built-in properties and various statistics and counters (number of sections, tables, images etc.) and place them into a new Word document. By default this will be inside the same folder as your source document, but you can configure the destination folder.

You can also specify which Word template you would like to use with the report or, by default, it will use your current Normal.dot/Normal.dotx’s styles for the Headings et al.

As you can see from the screenshot below, it’s been placed between the main Inspection Tools and the Configuration options. What might change is the name of the function, which for now is just ‘Report’.

The full function will extract everything that my Toolbox can display, but in a Word document. In theory, you will get a document that you know has a few problems, so you generate the report first and print it out before starting to fix the problems within the document.

As soon as I’ve got a bit further with the development, I’ll post an update on here.

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