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Look here to find out what we've added since your last visit. We plan to add new material every week, so please check back often.

September 11, 2001

Read about

DDM and the events of that tragic day.

 

News feed updated continuously
News feed updated continuously
 

September 15, 2006

Comrades-in-Arms

We receive requests to trade links with other web sites practically every day. We decline most of them, because they don't conform to our stated guidelines. To be listed on our links page, a site must (1) be dedicated to Microsoft Office or any of the programs that make up Office, and (2) offer Office-related resources for free.

We're pleased to welcome PoweredTemplates to our links page. They offer professionally-developed, attractive PowerPoint templates that you can download at no charge. And we've updated the link to Access guru Allen Browne's tip pages to reflect his new address.

December 31, 2004

And so another year goes into the books. What will the new one bring?

December 17, 2004

Christmas Memories

We love December evenings with their cool, crisp air. Caught as we are between the cold north and the temperate south, we begin to feel the winter cold just about now. The darkness comes on early, but we don't mindwe love the glow of neon lights in a December twilight.

We have to admit that we love the Christmas Season. In our graduate school days, we looked forward to the Christmas break more than to any other time. We loved how the days grew shorter, and the evenings longer, as the Fall Semester wound down. We finished our classes one by one; handed in our papers; took final exams. Then came the best part: the flight home. In those days we would escape cold, snowy Wisconsin for sunny Southern California to spend Christmas and New Year with family. That was a treat. The airports looked so festive with their lights and decorations. The crowds, though large, were fun to be around, because everyone was looking forward to their Holiday trip. 

We've seen a lot of Christmas traditions come and go, and every time the Christmas Season comes, we wonder just how many of the things we remember fondly live on, and how many are no more. Take the Santa Claus Lane Parade. It was a Los Angeles tradition way back when. Always held on the evening before Thanksgiving, it marked the beginning of the Holiday Season, and was a major television event. We suppose it was pretty quaint by today's standards—no bands or floats, just Hollywood celebrities parading by in convertibles. The TV host wished each a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, and it always seemed strange to hear someone say "Happy New Year" the day before Thanksgiving. Do they still have the Santa Claus Lane Parade?

We remember the public performances of Handel's Messiah every December in Madison, Wisconsin. What was special was that the audience was part of the show. They'd give you a sheet of music, and at the appointed time, you sang along in the Halleluiah Chorus. Jolly fun!

We wonder if they still set up the giant Christmas train layout in the lobby of Washington's magnificent Union Station? (Why don't you go look? It's just downtown.) And do they still have the Kansas City Steak Platter at Western Skies Steakhouse in San Angelo, Texas? You'd tell the waiter, "We'll have the KC Steak Platter for four," and they'd bring a huge platter piled high with steaks. We were never able to eat them all, no matter how hungry we were. (Hey, what does that have to do with Christmas?) Come to think of it, nothing, really. But we were thinking about San Angelo, and we remembered the Western Skies Steakhouse, and we wonder if they're still there.

The Well-Tempered Keyboard

As promised back in November, we've updated our Office shortcut key pages to reflect keyboard shortcuts in Office 2003.

December 3, 2004

We're delighted to see that Office guru Woody Leonhard is once again publishing his newsletters on a regular (and frequent) schedule. Welcome back, Woody!

I'm DDM, and I approved these updates.

November 12, 2004

Stay tuned as we update our pages of Office Shortcut Keys.

October

Watch this space for our Fall reading list...

September

Lots of good stuff is on the way...

August

Stay tuned...

July 2, 2004

Of course we have more new Outlook tips! Check 'em out!

Independence Day

The 4th of July, 1776, will be a memorable epoch in the history of America. I am apt to believe it will be celebrated by succeeding generations as the great anniversary festival. It ought to be commemorated as the day of deliverance, by solemn acts of devotion to Almighty God. It ought to be solemnized with pomp, shows, games, sports, guns, bells, bonfires, and illuminations, from one end of the continent to the other, from this time forward, forever. John Adams, July 5, 1776

May it be to the world, what I believe it will be, ... the signal of arousing men to burst the chains under which ... ignorance and superstition had persuaded them to bind themselves, and to assume the blessings and security of self-government. That form which we have substituted, restores the free right to the unbounded exercise of reason and freedom of opinion. Thomas Jefferson, 1826

The Fourth of July already! Where has the summer gone?

This year, as we have for the past five or six, we'll go up to the roof of the building housing our DDM Computing offices to watch the fireworks.  From our vantage point, we can look right down onto the National Mall. It's always a grand show. We do love fireworks.

We looked up (and present here for your consideration) two of our favorite Fourth of July quotes, just to remind ourselves what the fireworks are all about. The first is from our favorite Founding Father, John Adams. The second is from the author of the Declaration of Independence himself. Both seek to explain the significance of the day.

We admire Adams for his unbounded energy and enthusiasm. It shows in his writing, and rarely more so than in this letter he wrote from Philadelphia on the day after independence was proclaimed. That, for Adams, was "the day of deliverance" from foreign rule. No one had worked harder than he to bring it about. When it arrived, he had a right to take satisfaction in it, and that shows in his letter. But more important, as we see it, is what his words seem to say concerning the meaning of independence for the American people. It has unleashed a powerful force, Adams seems to say, the spirit of a restless, energetic, now free people. It is that spirit that will find expression in the many forms in which the people will celebrate independence day from now on.

One other point strikes us. At that moment, upstate New York, western Pennsylvania, Virginia's Blue Ridge, and the entire state of Georgia were literally the frontier. The thirteen colonies that had just declared their independence and would have to fight for the next six years to ensure it clung to the eastern seaboard of a vast, still largely unexplored continent. Yet he seems already to see the day when the idea of liberty would encompass that continent. That, of course, is what did happen.

Adams's vision was broad, but Jefferson's was even broader. Our quote comes from a letter he wrote just days before his death (which, as everyone knows, took place on July 4). Jefferson reminds us that independence brought self-government, which in turn brought the opportunity, realized in 1787-88, to create an enlightened government founded on the idea of individual liberty. Here he expresses the earnest wish that others would follow the example his countrymen had set, and that the idea of self-government as a right and of government as the guarantor of the rights of the individual would take hold throughout the world. And that, too, seems to be happening today, albeit by fits and starts.

So for those who celebrate it, happy Independence Day! To quote Jefferson one more time: "Let the annual return of this day forever refresh our recollections of these rights, and an undiminished devotion to them."

June 25, 2004

Presidential Memoirs

We picked up our copy of the presidential memoirs the other day. The number of pages was daunting, but we began reading and were drawn in at once. Such a dramatic story. So many momentous events. So many decisions. The president was a remarkable man. His character emerges clearly on every page. He was nothing if not decisive. He never shrank from making a difficult decision, and never had second thoughts. We're speaking, of course, of President Harry Truman, whose memoirs we've always wanted to read. We got a nice copy for a good price from a used book dealer on the Internet.

Here's an interesting fact concerning President Truman: For the first few days he was president, he continued to live in the apartment that he and his family had shared when he was vice-president. It's located at 4701 Connecticut Avenue NW, just a few doors up the street from our DDM Computing offices at 4545.

We understand that another president has published his memoirs recently. As a matter of fact, he'll be autographing copies at a little bookstore just up the street, where we sometimes shop for books, come July. From time to time, while he was in the White House, he would stop by the store unannounced. Our paths never crossed, however.

Has anyone ever asked you for your autograph? No matter; you can give it out anyway, with every e-mail you send. Here's how.

June 18, 2004

Remember how we promised you lots of tips about Microsoft Outlook 2003? In case you haven't noticed, we've brought you great new Outlook tips for the last three weeks in a row. Here's another one. And here's one about using keystrokes with Office 2003's great Office Clipboard.

June 11, 2004

Bloom's Day

June 16, so far as we know,  isn't a holiday in any country. Why should it be? Nothing really memorable ever happened on June 16, at least not in the real world. June 16 would be a day like any other except that exactly one hundred years ago, young James Joyce spent it walking the streets of his beloved Dublin with the woman who would one day be his wife. Years later, he chose that day as the backdrop for his novel Ulysses, making June 16, 1904 the most famous single day in Western literature. Heigho!

Well, here's how to add holidays to your Outlook calendar. Quite likely "Bloom's Day" will never be a holiday, but if it's as special to you as it is to us, you can add it to your calendar as an all-day event. Here's how.

June 4, 2004

We have lots of great new tips this week. Check out our new Excel and Outlook tips pages.

May 28, 2004

All This and World War, Too

For one week the Channa and the Cicada have taken a back seat. The news that four Northern Snakehead fish have been caught in the Potomac River in the past month, evidence that this unwanted visitor has taken up residence in at least one of the area's main waterways, has hardly raised an eyebrow. The Cicada, our once-in-seventeen-years visitor, is largely ignored.

The big news all week has been the dedication, on Saturday, May 29, of the World War II Memorial on the National Mall here in Washington, DC. The memorial has actually been open to the public since construction was completed a few weeks ago, because the hard fact is that the World War II generation my parents' generation is rapidly fading away, and the National Park Service wanted to give as many of them as possible a chance to see it.

I must admit that I was surprised to learn, when I moved to this area several years ago, that there was no monument to the veterans of World War II. I had always thought that the statue of the Marines raising the flag (the one modeled after the famous photograph) that stands just north of Arlington National Cemetery was the World War II memorial, but of course it isn't (it's the Marine memorial). When the present one was first proposed, I, like many, had reservations about placing so imposing a monument amid the open spaces of the National Mall. I'm not ashamed to admit that I was wrong about that, too.

All week long, there has been a national reunion of World War II veterans, and the Library of Congress has sponsored a series of programs to celebrate those remarkable men (and women). I wish that everyone could attend, for it has been wonderful. Just today I was present at panels featuring Navajo "code-talkers," Hispanic-American veterans, and former Tuskeegee Airmen. On Thursday, retired Senators George McGovern (D-SD) and Robert Dole (R-Kan) held an audience, young and old alike, spellbound as they talked about their service during the war. With three of every four World War II veterans gone, it's certain there will never be a reunion like this one again.

I'm glad that the World War II generation has at last received the gratitude it has so richly deserved. As I say, this is my parents' generation. Both did their part. My father, gone since 1972, served with the U.S. Navy in the Pacific. On December 7, 1941, he was aboard the battleship West Virginia when it was sunk at Pearl Harbor. He saved himself by jumping overboard. Later, aboard the cruiser Minneapolis, he took part in the pivotal victories at Coral Sea and Midway. And my mother, whom I never knew as anything other than a homemaker, was a "Rosie the Riveter." –DDM

May 7, 2004

Of Snakeheads and Cicadas

The newspapers here in Washington, DC, have been full of stories about two visitors, neither welcome, from the wild: the Northern Snakehead fish and the cicada. The Channa, or Snakehead, is native to Asia and parts of Africa. The Northern Snakehead, from China, is one of the less attractive members of the family. It can grow up to 40 inches long, has a large mouth, big teeth, is very aggressive, and eats practically anything. It’s been called “an air-breathing, land-crawling, voracious predator.”

Uh, did someone say “land-crawling?” Yes, that’s the scary part: This hungry fish can literally travel over land, surviving for days as it flip-flops from one body of water to another.

Two years ago, a Northern Snakehead was discovered in a pond in Prince Georges County, MD, just east of the District. The state of Maryland, recognizing the danger this alien predator posed to the ecosystem, took immediate steps (and spent tons of money) to eradicate it. And now, two years later, another one has been caught, in another pond, miles away from where the first one was discovered. Once again the state of Maryland will take decisive action to eradicate this unwelcome guest. For his part, Grizzly Bear can’t wait to get his paws on a Snakehead, a fish many consider to be a delicacy. And DDM’s taking no chances even though no Snakeheads have been seen anywhere near Northwest DC, he makes sure to take along his trusty baseball bat when he takes his evening walks.

Our second unwelcome visitor seems positively tame by comparison. It’s the cicada, a large winged insect that makes an appearance once every 17 years. Their visitation is expected to last about six weeks, starting soon. The cicada lives in trees and tall grass, and the male is known for the shrill sound he makes. Multiply that shrill sound by about a couple million, and you have some idea of what a noisy summer we’re in for.

So what does all this have to do with Microsoft Office? Well… For one thing, we'll probably spend most of the summer indoors, writing tips. More to the point, we used the new Research task pane in Microsoft Word to look up information for this write-up.

April 30, 2004

The other day, as we worked hard to create pages for our new DDM Computing Bookstore, we fell into a discussion of our favorite books. Our Web Team is a diverse group representing three countries on as many continents. We're all avid readers, so our literary discussions are frequent and can be quite lively.

Certain books, we agreed, just naturally go with certain times of the year. Take an obvious example: Dickens's A Christmas Carol and (what else?) Christmas Season. Who would think of reading about Scrooge and Tiny Tim in the middle of July?

Our discussion this time concerned the best books to read in the spring. Now springtime, we all agreed, is a time for light reading, a time for adventure stories, outdoor stories, and travel stories. When DDM asked the members of the team one by one to name their favorite springtime reads, this is what they answered:

Grizzly Bear: James Joyce's Ulysses.

Mary Lamb: Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice and Rupert Brooke's poem "Grantchester."

Mudraya Sova: Mikhail Lermontov's A Hero of Our Time, Leo Tolstoy's "The Cossacks" and Ivan Turgenev's Sportsman's Sketches and Fathers and Sons.

The Monkey: Eighteenthcentury English writer Tobias Smollett's The Adventures of Humphrey Clinker and any of the detective novels of James Lee Burke.

Apart from the Monkey's last recommendation, there's not much light reading there! But there's plenty of good reading. We hope you can find the time this spring for one of your favorite books, if not one of ours. And DDM? His favorite spring reading is Gustave Flaubert's Madame Bovary and Anton Chekhov's stories, especially "The Lady with the Lapdog."

Now what does all this have to do with Microsoft Office? Well... If that literary masterpiece you've got inside of you is just dying to get out, sit down at the computer today and fire up Microsoft Word. It will handle any literary challenge, from a short poem to a booklength manuscript.

April 23, 2004

DDM Sells His Soul?

One of the advantages to having our own domain is that we have absolute control over it. Much as we liked our old home on tripod.com, we never liked the way they served up advertisements at the top of our pages. Nor did we like the pop-up windows that, well, popped up all the time. Visitors often left us feedback complaining about the pop-ups, and all we could do was apologize and explain that we had no control over them. It was all part of the bargain: Tripod hosted our site for free, and in return they got to serve up adds and pop-ups.

Now everything has changed. Now that we have our own domain, we don't have to put up with pop-ups. They're gone forever. Nor have we served up any ads — until now.

Look down in the lower left corner of this (or any) page and you'll see the familiar logo of our new partners. The terms of our affiliation forbid us to announce who they are or even that we are, in fact, partners. But we'll be placing ads from them (and perhaps others) throughout our pages from now on. Have we sold out? We hope you don't think so, because we don't think so. Soon, we'll cut the ribbon on our Books section, where you'll be able to purchase books and software from our partner. And we'll be able to give you recommendations on what you should buy. That's why we sought this affiliation, because we believe it will bring benefits to us both.

April 16, 2004

Close Encounters

One evening not long ago, we were working late to meet a deadline when DDM decided to take a walk. He had not gone more than a block or two when he came practically nose to nose with some deer who were out taking a walk of their own, and had stopped in someone's front yard. "It was standing perfectly still, looking right at me," DDM told us later, describing how he almost bumped into one of them. "I thought it was a lawn ornament." Our offices are located in the far northwest corner of the District of Columbia. While it's not uncommon for the occasional opossum, raccoon or even fox to make an appearance in the neighborhood, we must admit it's more than a little disconcerting to think of deer running loose. On the other hand, we are located just a few hundred yards west of Rock Creek Park, the beautiful hilly, wooded area that is to Washington what Central Park is to New York. So we shouldn't be surprised to see the occasional wild animal.

What does all of this have to do with Microsoft Office? Well...

New Faces

DDM is pleased to announce the addition of three new members to our Web Team. He's counting on each of them to make a distinctive contribution in their area of expertise. When you have a minute, stop by our About Us page and say "Hello."

Spring Cleaning

We've been spending the better part of a week now dusting and rearranging furniture. We've tidied up the code on all our tips pages. And we've completely rearranged our tips about working with graphics. Take a look at our tips about working with graphics in Excel, PowerPoint, and Word, as well as Office in general (and note that we've even published a few new ones).

Next time: DDM sells his soul to the Devil.

April 9, 2004

Home Improvement: A Promise Reaffirmed

It was four years ago today that we launched DDM's Microsoft Office Tips and Tricks. As we noted a few weeks later, it was a tiny little site, with only a few pages (now we have over 200), no tips (over 500 now), and — we can admit it now — uncertain expectations (stay tuned). In the early days we often likened our site to a house with many rooms. Most of the rooms were empty, of course. A few were barely sketched out. And now and then, we found ourselves building rooms where we had never planned or expected them to be (have you visited our Links area lately?). But over the months we built them, one by one. And we moved in and furnished them.

Not long after our launch, DDM wrote:

Unlike a house, this site [will] never really be finished, because [we'll] add to it and improve it all the time. That's our promise to you, and we intend to keep it.

Four years and counting into the history of our site, we affirm once more: This home improvement project will never be finished. We'll never stop growing and improving DDM's Microsoft Office Tips and Tricks. We'll keep you posted on what we're doing. And you can let us know how it all looks to you.

And finally: The cyber-ink was barely dry on the cyber-page announcing our move last week when (ta da!) the move was made. Welcome to our new home. We hope you like it.

April 2, 2004

Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes

Here in Washington, DC, the unmistakable signs of spring have appeared, seemingly overnight. The weather, recently cold and blustery, has turned (relatively) mild. Blossoms have appeared on trees that were bare just yesterday. Restaurants up and down the street have started to put their tables and chairs out on the sidewalk, and down along the Tidal Basin the annual Cherry Blossom Festival is underway. Renewal is everywhere.

High above it all, in the offices of DDM Computing, we're about to embark on the biggest renewal in our history. More about that in a moment. First we want to tell you that we've cut the ribbon on our new, expanded Links area. We hope you like it. Second, we have a new Access tip this week. And watch for those Outlook 2003 tips we promised last week. They're on the way.

Now for the big news. In a matter of days, DDM's Microsoft Office Tips and Tricks will end its relationship with tripod.com and move to a new permanent home at www.ddmcomputing.com. We're looking forward to it, and we can't wait to welcome you to our new, ad-free (for now), popup-free home. So check back soon. We'll be right here when you come.

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March 26, 2004

Late-Breaking News

On Thursday, March 25, DDM received notice that he has been awarded his Microsoft Office Specialist Master Instructor certification. The Web Team congratulates him and reminds him that tomorrow, lunch is on him.

Microsoft Office 2003: Like at First Sight

We didn't say "love." We upgraded to Microsoft Office 2003 recently, and so far we like what we see. We like the cool, wintry colors and the way the toolbars are shaded. We like the new toolbar button icons; we like the way the buttons light up when we point at them. Same for the menus. We like how they light up, and how they unfurl from the Menu bar when we click them. Of course, much of this is carried over from Office XP, but we like it anyway. As before, we're grateful that Microsoft didn't change any file formats.

So far as the applications are concerned, we like what we see, even though we don't see any new features to die for. Interestingly, Outlook seemed to get the lion's share of the changes and enhancements this time around. The program has a significantly new "look and feel" to it. Watch these pages for new Outlook tips in the next few weeks.

Our Links page has expanded into a Links area, with separate pages for links to Office-related Websites, Office Communities, Newsletters, and Books.

And finally: Our Webmaster thanks everyone who has left feedback recently. Please keep it coming. We appreciate hearing from you very much.

March 19, 2004

All Good Things...

An old professor friend of ours (we called him the "Old Prof") passed away recently. DDM swears that late at night he can hear the ghost of the Old Prof walking the halls of DDM Computing, and who knows but that that may be so.

We mention the professor because he was fond of spouting such trite clichés as "All good things must come to an end." That phrase occurred to us more than a few times this week as we continued to update our two-and-a-half-year old Links page. So many fine Websites have folded; so many free daily tips services have been discontinued...

Then we took a second look and found that for practically every site that had folded, another just as good had appeared to take its place. Just take a look at our Links page and see how many great resources we've found.

So R.I.P., Old Prof. We'll miss you. But rest assured that for every end, there's a new beginning.

Next time: DDM takes a first look at Microsoft Office 2003.

March 12, 2004

We're Back!

After a two-and-a-half-year hiatus, we're back with new material. We want to thank all those faithful visitors who kept coming back, who searched our pages, and who left us feedback. We appreciate it all.

This month, we're going to concentrate on updating our Links page. Pardon our dust while the work is in progress. And we hope you like our new layout.

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August 2001

In August, we published tips on Access, Excel, and Word.

Take another look at our tips on Access Forms and Access reports.

And check out our tips on working with Word Tables and Printing in Excel.

July 2001

In July, we published tips on working with Access Tables, and Outlook Tasks.

June 2001

Two Cheers for Office XP

What were our first impressions of Microsoft Office XP? Overall, they were favorable. We'll tell you about them in a moment, but first -- a look back.

We remember the first time we saw Office 97. We remember how impressed we were with it. It seemed to us that Microsoft had looked at its product and made changes top to bottom. We loved the new features in each of the applications.

So what about the new Office? Well, we like the soft, subdued look that all the buttons and list boxes on the toolbars have. We like the way they seem to pop out of the toolbar when you point at them with the mouse. We like the way the menu items light up when you point at them, and the way the menus unfurl.

And what about the applications? Excel has a couple new features that we really like. So does PowerPoint. And we thank Microsoft for not changing the file format in Access yet again. But none of the applications has any new "must-have" features. Office XP, like Office 2000, is an incremental advance over its predecessor, not the quantum leap that Office 97 was.

The bottom line is that we liked Office XP, but we didn't fall in love with it the way we did with Office 97.

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May 2001

Waiting for Office XP

Microsoft has set May 31 as the release date for XP, the new version of Office. DDM has spent most of May preparing for the big event. DDM will start publishing hints, tips, and tricks for Office XP soon.

Of course, DDM's Microsoft Office Tips and Tricks will continue to feature tips for Microsoft Office 2000 and 97 for a long time to come.

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April 2001

On April 9, 2001, DDM's Microsoft Office Tips and Tricks celebrated its first birthday. Happy Birthday to Us!

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March 2001

In March, DDM finished reorganizing our tips pages. We hope this will make it easier to locate specific tips.

DDM also introduced the most significant new feature in many months, the "Print this Tip" button. Now, not only does a tip come up in its own separate window, but you can print the tip as well (if Internet Explorer is your browser). As DDM said, feel free to print that useful tip and keep it handy while you work. Just promise us you'll remember where you got it and will keep coming back for more.

Speaking of more, DDM added more tips to our Office, Access, and Word areas, and some new material to our Links page.

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February 2001

This month, our Access area grew as we added tips on working with Queries. Look for more Access-related tips in the months to come.

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January 2001

New tips on Access, Excel, Office, PowerPoint, and Word appeared all month.

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December 2000

Our server access crisis of last October-November is now a distant, though still unpleasant, memory. Once again, we're free to concentrate on the future.

When we first planned DDM's Microsoft Office Tips and Tricks, we imagined a house with many rooms. Each application in the Microsoft Office suite would have its own room. So we laid out our floor plan, built the rooms and, as the months passed, we moved the applications in, one by one. This month, we moved into our last empty room: We published our first MS Access-related tips. They appeared on our New Access Tips page on the 17th.

All month, we brought you new tips on Access, Excel, PowerPoint, Word and Office itself.

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November 2000

Our forced hiatus came to an end when, on November 18, our server access problem magically disappeared, and we were able to resume posting new material. To make up for lost time, we immediately published new tips on Excel, PowerPoint, and Word. We're back on a regular publishing schedule.

But the big news for November was the introduction of our new tip format. The number of tips on some of our pages was growing so large that the pages were taking too long to load, so DDM decided to do something about it. We revamped our tips pages so they now list only tip titles. The title is a link to the tip itself, which appears in a separate window.

We hope you agree that looking over a list of links is easier than browsing a long page of tips.

More changes are down the road. Stay tuned.

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October 2000

In October, DDM was faced with a crisis. After publishing new tips on September 23, he found himself locked out of his account. Frantic e-mails to Tripod went unanswered. Deadline after deadline passed, and DDM was unable to publish new material. So DDM decided, reluctantly, to take a bold step and find a new home. Stay tuned for more information as this situation develops.

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September 2000

In September, DDM introduced several features to our site. First, there were the new pages:

  • Our Site Map, which you can reach by following the link at the top of any page. With our Site Map, no page on our site is more than two mouse clicks away.

  • Our Search Page, which allows you to search our site.

Second, DDM introduced our news feed, located on this page and updated every fifteen minutes, which brings you the latest Microsoft-related headlines.

Third, scroll down to the bottom of any page, and you'll find these neat new features:

  • Our PC Term of the Day and PC-related search engine, brought to you by Webopedia.

  • Our Web search engine, courtesy of NBC Internet.

We brought you all this plus new tips for Excel, PowerPoint, and Word.

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August 2000

After thinking about it for a long time, DDM decided he would have to find a new host for DDM's Microsoft Office Tips and Tricks. He settled on Tripod, and set September 1 as the date that the site would launch at its new home. So we spent most of the month preparing for the move, and we were able to publish only a few new tips in our Excel and Word areas. These were posted at the beginning of the month.

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July 2000

Our site continued to grow. As promised, we published our first PowerPoint-related tips. They appeared on our New PowerPoint Tips page on July 28.

All month, we published Excel and Word-related tips. On July 7, DDM announced that from now on, we'd keep new tips on our "new tips" pages at least two weeks.

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June 2000

Our site continued to grow as we completed our initial "floor plan." Our site now has areas devoted to each of the core Office applications (Excel, Outlook, PowerPoint, and Word), as well as Access and Office itself.

Our first Word-related tips appeared on June 2, followed by our first Excel-related tips on June 9. We added new tips all month and, as we did so, we moved previously-published material to new pages. We published our first Office-related tips on June 30.

We published our first PowerPoint-related material on June 9, with our table of PowerPoint 97/2000 Function Keys and PowerPoint 97/2000 Shortcut Keys.

Our focus for the immediate future will be to add content to all these pages. We'll publish new tips every week, and, before long, we hope to begin publishing longer "how-to" articles.

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May 2000

Our site grew rapidly in May. Our "floor plan" took definite shape, as our "tips and tricks" area saw the debut of pages devoted to Access and Outlook, joining those already devoted to Excel, Word, and Office itself.

Our first tables of shortcut keys appeared this month. As DDM said at the time, "You'll work more quickly and efficiently if you use keystrokes rather than the mouse to perform most actions (that's why they call them 'shortcut keys')." We added our tables of Office Shortcut Keys, Excel Shortcut Keys, and Word Shortcut Keys on May 6. Our table of Outlook 97/98/2000 Shortcut Keys appeared on May 19, and our table of Access 97/2000 Shortcut Keys appeared one week later.

In addition, we continued to publish tables of function keys, with our table of Outlook 97/98/2000 Function Keys on May 19, and our table of Access 97/2000 Function Keys on the 26th.

Our first tips appeared on May 12, when we published a big batch in our Outlook Tips area. We published Outlook-related tips all month, and on May 19, we started date-stamping our tips and flagging new material with theicon.

DDM added a comprehensive list of Microsoft-sponsored Internet Newsgroups to our Links page on May 19.

And the big news for May came on the 12th, when DDM announced that our site had been accepted into Uncle Jim's Office Tips Webring, a family of over 70 Microsoft Office-related "tips and tricks" sites. Our Webring Center, the gateway to our sister sites, first appeared on our home page on that day.

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April 2000

DDM's Microsoft Office Tips and Tricks first saw the light of day on April 9, 2000. It was a tiny little site, with only a few pages and no tips. At that time, DDM said that if our site were a house, the foundation would be laid and the framework nailed together. It turns out that that was something of an overstatement.

In reality, the foundation was laid and the floor plan was sketched out, but only roughly. That floor plan would be revised over and over in the ensuing weeks, and only much later could we say with confidence that we knew how many rooms there would be, and where they would be located (and we may still be wrong).

DDM also said that unlike a house, this site would never really be finished, because we would add to it and improve it all the time. That's our promise to you, and we intend to keep it.

In April, our Links page debuted with some great Microsoft Office-related websites, online discussion forums, and free newsletters.

We also launched our "tips and tricks" area with tables of Excel 97/2000 Function Keys and Word 97/2000 Function Keys. Our very first tips appeared on our page of Office 2000 Easter Eggs.

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Last modified: June 05, 2004

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