Monday, February 25, 2013

Happy Monday: Let's do something fun

How many of you, my faithful stalkers, know about the little trick that turns your computer screen upside down?  This won't work on EVERY computer, mind you, but a whole lot of 'em.  And you can have a boatload of fun with this little trick too.

The keyboard command is this:
CTRL and the down arrow button (or the up arrow button)

That's how you get it to go back to normal too.

It's a great way to lighten up someone's day, so long as you are there to play it off as a silly gag instead of something more sinister.  I suppose you can use that command for evil, too.  But I don't reccomend it as those chickens can come home to roost pretty quickly.  If you dish it, you had better be prepared to take it.

In other news, you probably know I love love love my little keyboard shortcuts.
I've noticed that, largely speaking, they seem to work in pretty much every program I use.  Exceptions are rampant I'm afraid, but as a rule it's worth trying.

First off we all know that CTRL + C is copy, right?
and CTRL + P is for printing?
Did you know that CTRL + V is for pasting?

and what about that "oh crap" moment when you just deleted waaaay too much of something or accidentally dragged something to the wrong folder?  No worries.  CTRL + Z is your "oh crap" command that does a step-at-a-time undo for whatever it was you just did.

Now here's where it gets fun:
CTRL + Y is the "oh crap oh crap" button that undoes what you just undid.
It's like you're going "undo, undo, undo...  shit that was one too many" and to undo that last one you do CTRL + Y to get it back.

CTRL + F will let you find words in word documents, websites, spreadsheets...  so far pretty much anywhere.
If it's an editable something (like a word document) CTRL + H will do a find and replace command with that lovely little window that pops up and asks you for specifics.

When in Excel (my most favoritest of programses ever) you can use CTRL + H  to change one equation, or lots of them, or all of them wholesale so long as the "letter string" (the things you tell it to look for) are an exact match to what is actually in there.

And another little gem in Excel (the precious) is getting a column with spotty data to fill itself.
For instance...

Say you have column A and January in cell A1.  February starts on A15 and March starts on A 23.

Column B has January-based data from B1-B14 and so on - but you want to sort this monster but still keep the month titles the same for the data they're associated with.  NO problem.

Select Column A
Now instead of CTRL+H for a Find and Replace, we're just going to say "select the blank ones"
Do that with CTRL+G to open the GoTo window
and click on "special"
Choose "blanks"
You're halfway there! 
now simply type an equal sign
press the "up" arrow on your keyboard
and hit CTRL+ENTER
The blanks are all filled!  But wait - if you sort it now, the equations you just put in there will go all hoopty.
So select the column again and do a CTRL+C to copy
Give me a right click this time, and choose "paste special" to make sure that you can tell it what exactly you want to paste.  From the menu that appears, pick "values".
If you just pasted what you had copied, you'd get the equations.
If you never want the cell contents to change again per the equation, you don't need the equation any more so you can use the Paste Special and the Values cue.

Neat, right?

So we used CTRL+G just now.  That's a GoTo command that you can say "take me straight to cell AR713!" or whatever.  Also, as we just saw, you can use that command to "go to" all kinds of special things to select and work with.  A GREAT TIME SAVER if you are confronted with a huge spreadsheet. 

We also did an equation with the equals sign...  and used CTRL+ENTER for multiple selections.
Doing that with an equation just says "go ahead and put my equation right here into everything that's selected, yo." and then Excel (the precious) will do your bidding faithfully.

I'm guessing you're making that face again... the one with the big eyeballs and the eybrows hitched skyward so I'll stop here.  But wasn't this fun?  All kinds of great stuff right there at your fingertips - which for me is almost always easier than using my mouse because my hand-eye coordination blows.  Seriously.  Mouse-ery is very hard for me.  So if I can do my selections and pasting with my keyboard... I'm all over it.

Happy Monday you snowed-in minions and kings of elsewhere!  Go play with Excel now!
(precious precious)

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