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Word 2010: Forms in Depth

Creating and saving building blocks


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Word 2010: Forms in Depth

with Gini Courter

Video: Creating and saving building blocks

We're creating a form and we want to be able to put in boilerplate text based on user choices at the moment that they're creating a form. There are two different sets of text possible here in this letter of agreement. This is text that's about logistics. It's three choices. Training will be provided at the client location at a third-party facility or at a third party facility that this company has to worry about. There are three possibilities about materials and these just happen to have three for each one. One could have two and the other could have seven. Three is not a necessity.

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Word 2010: Forms in Depth
2h 4m Intermediate May 24, 2011

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In this course, author Gini Courter introduces the form creation tools found in Word 2010 and shows how to produce electronic forms that are visually pleasing and easy to navigate. The course covers designing a form; capturing data effectively with dropdown lists, date pickers, and check boxes; and adding controls for repeating data using the Word Content Control Toolkit. The course also includes tutorials on testing, protecting, and distributing forms.

Prerequisite Course: Word 2010 Essential Training

Topics include:
  • Setting up a form
  • Customizing pre-built Microsoft.com templates
  • Inserting content controls
  • Saving a form as a template
  • Troubleshooting form issues
  • Understanding Building Blocks
  • Creating a schema using the Content Control Toolkit
Subjects:
Business Forms
Software:
Office Word
Author:
Gini Courter

Creating and saving building blocks

We're creating a form and we want to be able to put in boilerplate text based on user choices at the moment that they're creating a form. There are two different sets of text possible here in this letter of agreement. This is text that's about logistics. It's three choices. Training will be provided at the client location at a third-party facility or at a third party facility that this company has to worry about. There are three possibilities about materials and these just happen to have three for each one. One could have two and the other could have seven. Three is not a necessity.

One choice is that the materials will be reproduced, another are that they will be charged, another is that the client will provide it, those kinds of choices, and when you're creating something like a contract, these kinds of options are really prevalent, that you will have one choice based on a particular client situation, another choice based on another. There are many many times when you're creating documents where you are copying and pasting text. And by using building blocks and using the content control on the Developer tab, we can make this so easy that it's absolute gorgeous.

I've colored this text so that you can see it. I actually changed the font color so that it would stand out in the document. The thing I want to point out is that this is formatted text, so if I leave it bright red like this then it will be bright red when it comes back into the document. So, it would be a good idea right now for us to just set this text back to Automatic and take off the bolding. And we will do the same thing here, just you know return this text to Normal and we will be fine. So, let's start by creating three building blocks about logistics, one for each of these three choices.

Now, let's talk a little bit about this document first. We're creating a template. When I save a building block, I can't save it in the document. I can only save it in the template. So, even though its way early and we haven't done a lot of the other work to turn this document into the template that we will ultimately want it to be, before I can create and save a building block in this document it has to be saved as a template. So, let's simply do a File > Save As, scroll to the top, and say we would like to save this in the Templates folder as a template.

I could also save it here locally as a template until I'm ready to publish it. It doesn't really matter. I know that I'll be using it and no one else will because I'm saving it in my personal Templates folder. So, this is the letter of agreement. Choose and I'm simply going to save this. Now, it's a template. So, let's begin by selecting a chunk of text. Go to Insert > Quick Parts > Save Selection to the Quick Part Gallery. Now, if you'd like to know more about creating building blocks, I want to refer you to Word 2010 Essential Training on lynda.com where there's a great chapter about creating building blocks. But I'm assuming that you you'll be pretty comfortable with this.

The name I'm going to put in will be the name for the first choice and this is Client Site or Client Location. Now, it asks where I want to put it. I can keep it in Quick Parts. I can put it in a custom list if I want to. I am just going to leave it here. The Category becomes important because I'm going to refer to the category when I drop in the content control from the Developer tab. I want each of these three items to have the same category and for there to be nothing else in this category.

So, I'm going to say Create New Category. Say Training Facility. That works fine. Say OK. I have just created a new category and then it says where will I save it. Notice that because I have saved my file as a template, it's a choice here to save it locally. I could also save it in Normal.dot-- as you saw in the last movie, not a good idea-- or in your personal Building Blocks folder. If I want to use this particular building block on all kinds of files that I create whether I created them with this template or not, I'll save them in Building Blocks.

If I want these building blocks available to this template, no matter who I send it to then I will put it locally in the template. And that's my choice. One more option here. If I'm inserting this information in the middle of a paragraph and I'd like it to have the rest of the text continue, then I would want to insert it inline. Insert content only. If on the other hand, it will always be its own paragraph, I just go ahead and fix that here so I don't have to press Enter before and after when I insert it. And finally, if it was a cover page I was creating, I would choose Insert content in its own page.

The correct answer here for me for this content is it's always going to be in its own paragraph. Let's make sure that I have done everything that I need to do here. It's going in the Quick Parts Gallery. It's going in the Category I created called Training Facility, saved in this local template in its own paragraph. I'm good, great! We are going to do this twice more. Notice here though, Training Facility category, my first quick part is already here. I am going to save this new selection to the Quick Part Gallery.

Notice that it picks up the first couple of words, which are almost always wrong. This one is going to be a 3rd Party Facility. It will always come back and default to the General category. You're going to have to choose the category that you created, make sure the template is correct, and again all of these should behave the same way in their own paragraph. So, there is my second quick part. I'm now going to go grab my third. When I open the Quick Parts Gallery, notice that these two are here already and they are in alphabetical order.

This one starts with a number, so it's first, this one starts with the letter C, so it's second. I am going to go ahead and save this selection and this third is that they will be held in the Triad Office. I'm going to put it in the Training Facility category in LAChoose in its own paragraph. So, again all of them behave the same way, saved in this template, and I am going to say OK. If I go look at my Quick Parts list now, you'll notice that I have under Training Facility these three quick parts that I created all by themselves.

If there were other quick parts, I would find them by scrolling up or down. This is all that there are. Before you see this file again in the next movie, I'm going to go in and create three more quick parts and I am going to put them in the category call Materials. If you'd like to go ahead and play with this file and do that yourself, go ahead. And then finally what I'm going to do is I'm going to delete the boilerplate text in the document here, leaving simply a place to drop this data that I can see for right now. I won't even want that in the future. And I'm going to go ahead and Save my template once again. In saving it it's going to save my quick parts as well.

I'll see you in the next movie when we will see how to hook these up with a content control in the Developer tab.

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