Word 2013 – getting “good to go”

March 5, 2013 by christians in Technical Documentation

Blog post by John Cobb

Are you ready for Word 2013? It may not be quite ready for you, depending on whether you upgrade from Word 2010 or an earlier version. I completed the upgrade, and my experience with Word 2013 has been great for the most part—well, except for a quibble or two and one snafu.

First the good stuff:

  • The new UI in Word 2013 is crisp and sharp. Very Windows 8, as you might expect.
  • As a web app, you can open and exit Word 2013 faster than Word 2010. And the web app appears to respond more quickly to authoring and formatting changes as you work in it.
  • There are a few handy features located at the bottom blue edge of the web app:
  • You can adjust the slider to zoom in and out of your work as you see fit. No more going through the View tab of the ribbon to do this, although that option remains available.
  • The automated Word Count displays the current word count of the document as you work. Need to limit a paragraph to a precise number of words? Just triple-click the paragraph to select it and get an instant word count to let know where you are at.
  • You can also click the proofing icon next to Word Count to start the Spelling & Grammar feature to check your content. The book icon for this feature displays an “x” until all misspellings and grammar snags are resolved. The x changes to a check mark after Word 2013 completes the spell check to indicate no errors in your content.

A quibble and one snafu:

  • Turning Track Changes on works as expected, either by clicking this feature on the Review tab of the ribbon or by pressing Ctrl+Shift+E. However, in Word 2013 the default view of this feature displays tracked changes as Simple Markup, which indicates changes in text with only a red vertical bar in the right margin of the document.
  • To change this view to see more detail, on the Review tab, expand the Display for Review list box and click the All Markup option. This change and others that you may want to make regarding how comments display will remain in effect the next time that you open Word 2013.
  • After completing the upgrade to Word 2013 and editing some content, as a final step before handing the content off, I clicked the Spelling & Grammar button to check my work and immediately got the following reassuring confirmation message:Spell Check

But this turned out to be too reassuring, and in fact I found myself in a bit of a snafu. The Word 2013 ribbon let me know with the following information message that my upgrade was actually missing important proofing tools that this feature requires, which meant that I really wasn’t good to go at all.RibbonClicking the Download button to install the missing proofing tools takes you to the Office 2013 Language Options page. From there I followed what seems like a mostly straightforward process to get the tools.

To download and install the proofing tools from the Office 2013 Language Options page:

  1. On this somewhat less-than-intuitive webpage, expand the Office 2013 Language Options list box to select your language. That is, unless you want to install proofing tools for the default choice, Azerbaycan dili, part of the Turkic language family that is spoken in southwestern Asia by the Azerbaijani people. Who knew?
  2. Under Proofing Tool, click Download to install the tools on your computer, and then reboot.

Unfortunately, this pretty simple process did not work for me. I found it necessary to instead return to the Office Professional Plus 2013 installer to get the proofing tools that I needed.

To download and install the proofing tools from the Office 2013 Professional Plus installer:

  1. On the first page of the installer, leave the default setting in place to Add or Remove Features and then click Continue.
  2. On the Installation Options tab, expand the Microsoft Office node and then expand the Microsoft Word node to verify that all of the app’s components have been installed on your computer.
  3. On the same tab, expand the Office Shared Features node, expand the Proofing Tools node, select the proofing tools package for your language, and then click Continue as needed to install the package and reboot your computer.

Installation OptionsSo if you too discover a case of the missing proofing tools after upgrading to the latest version of Word, rerun the installer to acquire them to be fully good to go with Word 2013.