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From Barnes & NobleThe Barnes & Noble Review
Office XP can do just about everything -- but it doesn't do everything with equal competence or elegance. You want a book that tells you both the good stuff and the bad stuff, and shows you practical ways to work around the bad stuff. Ed Bott and Woody Leonhard have written that book.
Bott and Leonhard assume Office is the key tool of your working life: You're no beginner (though, like everyone else, you're new to the latest version). Their goal is to help you unearth the features and techniques that can do the most for your productivity -- features that are often buried well under the surface. For example, you'll learn how to use Outlook's email filtering tools to cope with the flood of email messages you're getting, how to store custom Excel chart types so you can reuse the formatting you've laboriously created, and how to create a shortcut that automatically publishes your files to a web server whenever you click Save.
Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Outlook are covered in the greatest detail. Bott and Leonhard cover Access and FrontPage in somewhat less depth, but they still hit the high points -- and, even here, some of the tips could pay for the book. (Don't waste your time building input masks manually in Access: there's a well-hidden Wizard that transforms this arduous task into child's play.)
As most Office users realize, there are a batch of shared "applets" available to all (or most) Office programs. Bott and Leonhard do a nice job with these -- including new capabilities such as Microsoft Office Document Scanning. The book concludes with a well-done introduction to VBA, Office's shared programming language. One nice touch here: more than a dozen snippets of working code that handle a surprising number of the tasks you're likely to be interested in.
Buy the book, and you're eligible to download a free (unlimited) copy of WOPR, Woody Leonhard's nifty library of add-on tools for Office XP. Previous versions sold for $49.99, so it's a pretty nice bonus. (Bill Camarda)
Bill Camarda is a consultant and writer with nearly 20 years' experience in helping technology companies deploy and market advanced software, computing, and networking products and services. His 15 books include Special Edition Using Word 2000 and Upgrading & Fixing Networks For Dummies®, Second Edition.