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Friday, May 18, 2001

  • Progress on the research park
  • Before we get to the long weekend
  • Library will be open more this year
  • URLs and e-mail addresses in Microsoft Word


Staff association leader

Steve Breen of the information systems and technology department will be president-elect of the staff association in the coming year, and president in 2002-03, the association told its members this week. He was acclaimed to office as the only candidate put forward in the recent nomination period. Breen will serve as president following Ed Chrzanowski of the math faculty computing facility, who's been president-elect during 2000-01.

New members of the staff association executive will take office at the group's annual general meeting at noontime on June 1.

Progress on the research park

Waterloo Regional Council approved the "business case" for the development of UW's north campus Research and Technology Park at its regular meeting Wednesday night -- another step towards making the $214 million project a reality.

The Regional Municipality of Waterloo was asked to lend its support, and make a $5.7 million contribution, along with other sponsors including the City of Waterloo, Communitech and Canada's Technology Triangle, as well as UW. Official approval by Waterloo city council was given May 8.

"The Region of Waterloo is pleased to be a part of the partnership developing the University of Waterloo Research and Technology Park," said a statement from regional chair Ken Seiling. "This Region has a long tradition of business, education and government sectors working together to build our community and enhance our quality of life."

With the city and region in support, the focus now shifts to the provincial and federal governments, which are being asked for $27 million through the SuperBuild "infrastructure" program. Government money is to be used for such facilities as roads and sewers on the north campus site and nearby, while private sector money will put up buildings that are eventually expected to house companies with some 6,000 jobs.

The "business case" calls for the creation of 1.2 million square feet of total space in three phases. The first phase of the development would involve 400,000 square feet of building space, and officials say a number of local high technology firms have expressed interest in establishing facilities in this phase.

UW president David Johnston called the research and technology park proposal "a remarkable symbol of the new economy". It's a "powerful idea and an important initiative for the people of this region and the province," he added.

The business plan lists these objectives for the research park, which has been one of UW's ambitions for more than a decade:

Before we get to the long weekend

Monday, May 21, is Victoria Day and a holiday, bringing UW a long weekend. University offices and most services will be closed Monday, and classes will not be held. Of course some key services continue as always: And thanks to direct in-dialing (remember what things were like when every call to UW had to be handled by an operator?) it's possible to reach anybody who happens to be at work, at any hour. The switchboard number is 888-4567.

The Dana Porter and Davis Centre libraries will be open their usual hours on Saturday and Sunday. On Monday, they'll be open from noon to 6 p.m., and self-charge will be available but no other services.

Briefly, a few other things that are happening today and over the weekend:

And let me mention that there will be no fireworks on campus for Victoria Day. For those, we've got to wait until the Canada Day party on July 1.

Library will be open more this year

The UW library has announced that "in an effort to better serve UW students, faculty and staff", it will increase the hours libraries are open -- starting with Victoria Day. (Last year the libraries were entirely closed on that holiday.)

"During the upcoming fiscal year," says a memo from Mary Stanley in the library office, "both Porter and Davis will be open 353 days and be closed just 12 days. Both sites will be open approximately 155 hours more this year than last year.

"Since fiscal year 1998-99, the Library has increased the hours that both the Davis and Porter buildings are open by more than 300 hours."

Specific changes to the building hours:

[Nesting beside yellow pole]
The best place in North America to live, work, invest and raise a family: Mom and Pop Goose have chosen a nesting site at the edge of UW's parking lot A.

URLs and e-mail addresses in Microsoft Word -- by Carol Vogt

Seventh in an irregular series of how-to articles from the Electronic Workplace Group in the information systems and technology department
Many Word users have been frustrated by Word's handling of URLs and email addresses. Word assumes that either of these should be treated as a hyperlink, and displays (and prints) them in blue, with underlining. This formatting may be fine if the document is intended for on-line viewing. However, if the document is to be printed, most people don't want the underlining and blue text (which will print as a lighter shade of grey).

It would seem that it should be straightforward to change this behaviour. Most people select Options from the Tools menu, and expect to find a setting there, but there isn't one. So how can you stop Word from behaving in this way?

This formatting Word carries out on URLs and email addresses is part of a collection of sometimes helpful (but frequently not) automatic formatting operations which Word calls Autoformatting. There are functions you probably appreciate, such as Word's superscripting the "st" and "rd" of ordinals such as 1st and 3rd. You may appreciate that if you start a paragraph with something like a 1. followed by a space Word will assume you are starting a numbered list. But most people don't appreciate having their URLs print underlined in blue.

The good news is that you can control Word's autoformatting operations. From the Tools menu, you can select AutoCorrect, and four panels of settings will appear. There are two panels of settings that affect autoformatting. One is labeled "Autoformat" and the other "Autoformat as you type". There are pretty much identical settings in each, and the one that controls the appearance of URLs is "Internet and network paths with hyperlinks". Uncheck this option.

But on which panel? If you uncheck it on the "Autoformat as you type" panel, it will be turned off for all URLs and email addresses that you will type in the future. However it is not exactly intuitive how to turn it off for existing documents. Word's Help will tell you that to remove a single hyperlink, you right click on the hyperlink, and from the context menu that appears, choose Hyperlink, Remove. That may be okay if you only have one or two, but to find out how to remove all hyperlinks from a document, we must go to Microsoft's web site and search their Knowledge Base. After searching for keywords "Word", "hyperlink" and "remove", we will be presented with an article which informs us that:

To remove all hyperlinks in a document:
On the Edit menu, click Select All.
Press CTRL+SHIFT+F9 on your keyboard
Intuitive, isn't it?

However, there is some good news. In Office XP, the newest version of Microsoft Office, to be released later this month, Microsoft has recognized that people want more control over automatic formatting functions. Whenever Word applies any automatic formatting, such as the creation of a hyperlink, a little symbol called a "smart tag" will appear when you move your mouse over the hyperlink. There is a drop-down menu on the smart tag, that lets you choose to undo the current hyperlink for this occurrence, or to stop the automatic creation of hyperlinks.

There is more good news in Office XP. Clippy the annoying paper clip has gone! Yay! There are several other welcome additions:


[UW logo] Editor of the Daily Bulletin: Chris Redmond
Information and Public Affairs, University of Waterloo
credmond@uwaterloo.ca | (519) 888-4567 ext. 3004
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