More code-tweaking = more enhancements to my add-in

Mostly yesterday, plus some minor tweaks today, mean that I’ve finally (finally!) worked out how to get my search and replace routines working within all items in a document, whether they’re in the main document, the headers or footers, or even text inside certain types of shape.

This, combined with the enhancements to the Fix Fields routine and enhancing the Which Fonts means that I’m about halfway there to getting all of my main functions to work with any items within a document.

The next big hurdles will be the Image/Shape Browser and the Table Inspector. Due to the number of functions that each of this GUIs include, that’s a lot of extra coding.

I can foresee even more grey hairs appearing on my head or in my beard as I ponder how to implement this next stage. However, these updates will probably not make it into the final release of v1.85.

My testers (internal and external) are busy doing their best to try and break the latest beta version (v1.84p). This is *without* the ‘fix text anywhere’ option as that’s inside v1.84q. The add-in has come a long way since the v1.84g that I gave away at the TCUK conference just a few months ago.

v1.85 is still on track for a release in December. All being well that is and providing no major bugs appear.

Back To Basics – The Before and After diet!

Today I’ve mostly been putting the Back To Basics GUI on a strict diet!

Due to the new Image/Shape Browser, a lot of the item removal options within Back To Basics are now duplicated functionality, so I’ve been removing them. This has resulted in the Section Breaks, Page Breaks and Column Breaks options being removed. Also for the chop are all of the functions linked to Inline Shapes and Shapes.

There was a limited amount of Inline Shapes/Shapes included, whereas the Image/Shape Browser covers all the possible types that I’m aware of.

So this is the last screenshot on this blog of the old Back to Basics GUI ..


… and here is the slimmed down version of it. Only the functions that aren’t included anywhere else in the toolbox remain.


All in all, it’s a good bit of work for today. The toolkit as a whole is now approximately 15K smaller than it was in the previous beta (v1.84o).

v1.85 should be available before mid-December

That is the planned release date. It all depends on how many features that I can add that don’t create more fixes for me to find :)

I fixed the Fix Fields code last Friday so that it now looks inside the headers, footers and every section within the document. I’d never really got my head around using Ranges inside Word (Excel is much easier in this respect), so when the penny dropped, it enabled me to fix this function.

This also means it will be a lot easier to implement a GUI-based version of Fix Fields. Whether that’s included as part of v1.85, or a future version all depends on the spare time I have in work to tinker with the code.

According to the long list of fixes and/or new features that I’ve listed in the manual, there are currently 30+ changes that have gone into the current development version (v1.84n) of the toolbox.

Some of them have been, like the tweaks to the Fix Fields function mentioned above, just a case of the penny dropping and it all coming together so that I understood what tweaks I needed to do. Others have been on my ‘To Do’ list for a long time now and have finally made it into the code.

It’s getting there :)

More additions to the Image/Shape Browser

I’ve made some improvements to the Image/Shape Browser function yesterday. So this is just a quick post to show what’s been updated.

Both functions will display a lot more information about the relevant types of Inline Shape (aka ‘Image’) or Shapes that are inside your document. I.e. Linked Images will display the full path of the filename that the item is pointing to.

Both functions offer the same type of fixes available to any image or shape within your document. You can select individual items, or use the Select All check box to include everything.

Delete – select the item(s) from the list and click the Delete button to remove them from the document.

Break Links – this function only applies to linked images, linked shapes or linked OLE objects. Select them from the list and click the Break Links button. Each object will have the link removed from them and you will be left with just the icon showing (if that’s how you displayed the linked item) or <insert description here>.

Convert – this function will convert between inline and floating images or shapes. In Word terms, if an image is rigid with the text, it’s an inline shape. If it can hover above the text, then it’s a floating image, aka a shape. This function will only work with graphical items and will convert from one type to the other. Select the images you want to convert and then click the Convert button.

Resize – this function will resize all the selected items. Select the items you want to resize, then choose a percentage option from the drop-down box. Click the Resize button and the selected items will be altered.

(the above is a copy and paste from my manual, so it’s a bit raw at the moment)



These functions will be available in the next beta as and when I upload it to Dropbox.