Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007 and 2010. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Meaningless Text.

Meaningless Text

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated July 27, 2015)

5

If you are looking for a quick way to put meaningless tripe in your document, then Word is only too happy to oblige. Why would you need meaningless tripe? Perhaps to do some testing, fill some space., or to see how text looks in a given page format Regardless, Word provides a quick way to do this. Try the following:

  1. Position the cursor at the beginning of a paragraph.
  2. Type =rand() and press Enter. (It doesn't really matter if you use lowercase, uppercase, or mixed case.)

Word replaces this text with 3 paragraphs of 3 sentences each. The sentences consist of helpful hints on how to change the appearance of your document. You can vary the number of sentences per paragraph, as well as the number of paragraphs, by using the format =rand(p,s) in step 2. In this format, p is replaced with the number of paragraphs you want and s is replaced with the number of sentences per paragraph. Thus, if you wanted 9 paragraphs of 7 sentences each, you could use =rand(9,7) in step 2. You can leave out the sentence count parameter, if desired, and Word will resort to the default number of sentences per paragraph.

If creating this type of meaningless text doesn't work on your system, check the following:

  1. Display the Word Options dialog box. (In Word 2007 click the Office button and then click Word Options. In Word 2010 display the File tab of the ribbon and then click Options.)
  2. At the left side of the dialog box click Proofing.
  3. Click the AutoCorrect Options button. Word displays the AutoCorrect tab of the AutoCorrect dialog box. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The AutoCorrect tab of the AutoCorrect dialog box.

  5. Make sure the Replace Text As You Type check box is selected.
  6. Click OK to close the AutoCorrect dialog box.
  7. Click OK to close the Word Options dialog box.

If you are a long-time user of Word, you may remember that in previous versions using =rand() returned sentences about "the quick brown fox." If you are sentimentally attached to that old brown fox, you can instead use the command =rand.old() and Word uses the old sentences as filler. The parameters that can be used with the command are the same as they are for the =rand() command.

It is interesting to note that if you look through AutoCorrect replacement text entries in the AutoCorrect dialog box, you will find nothing there about this feature. It seems, instead, to be built into Word "behind the scenes."

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (7112) applies to Microsoft Word 2007 and 2010. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Meaningless Text.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He  is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...

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Comments

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What is eight more than 8?

2015-07-27 16:17:27

Lois E. Power

I understood the first part but the instruction about using the autocorrect thing confused me.
what to I type in the replace box and what do I type in the with box


2015-07-27 10:25:55

M Jenkins

What a time-saver when testing fonts, styles, readability, screen resolution, and text clarity on different monitors.
Thanks!


2012-10-15 19:50:10

birdplan

Of all of these choices, lorem is my personal favorite - quirkier than the others. They are all discussed at http://support.microsoft.com/kb/212251/en-us. Thanks Allen and RTM!


2012-10-13 11:24:25

Juan

Wonderful, I never imagine that!


2012-10-13 07:05:55

RTM

What about

=lorem()

end press 'enter' ?


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