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Formatting Text

PowerPoint does a good job of showing off the improved font rendering capabilities in Office 2007 and Windows Vista. You can scale text with no loss of quality, so your presentations will remain readable (unless you make the text too small for people in the back row!).

The main tools you'll use to work with fonts are in the Font and Paragraph groups on the Home tab of the Ribbon (Figures 4.16 and 4.17). These tools are similar to the ones in the other Office 2007 applications. Because great-looking text is so vital to a good presentation, I'll be discussing the text tools in depth.

Figure 4.16

Figure 4.16 Most of your font stylings are done using the Font group on the Home tab of the Ribbon.

Figure 4.17

Figure 4.17 Paragraph styling is done mostly with the Paragraph group on the Home tab.

To change fonts in a text box:

  1. Select the text you want to change.
  2. Choose Home > Font > Font, then choose the font you want from the pop-up menu (Figure 4.18).
    Figure 4.18

    Figure 4.18 Choose the typeface you want from the Font menu.

    As you hover over a font, the text shows you a live preview of the change. Click a font to select it, and the selected text changes.

    Notice how PowerPoint lists the fonts used in the theme design at the top, other fonts that have been recently used next, then all the fonts in your system last. All the fonts are shown as previews, rather than just a plain menu font.

Changing font sizes

Like changing fonts, changing font sizes is just a matter of selecting text boxes or text and making your choice from the Font window.

To change the size of type:

  1. Select the text you want to change.
  2. Choose Home > Font > Font Size, then choose the size you want from the pop-up menu.

    As you hover over a font size, the text shows you a live preview of the size change. Click a size to select it, and the selected text changes.


    Choose Home > Font > Increase Font Size, or press ctrl__shift.jpg


    Choose Home > Font > Decrease Font Size, or press ctrl__shift1.jpg

    These two buttons change the font size up or down in the same increments that they are listed in the Font Size menu. So for instance, clicking Increase Font Size on 24-point text jumps the text size to 28 points, and clicking Decrease Font Size on that same 24-point text shrinks the text to 20 points.

Setting font styles

There are several font styles that you can set using the Font group, including bold, italic, underline, strikethrough, and shadow. There are also additional styles accessible from the Font dialog.

To set basic font styles:

  1. In a text box, select the text that you want to style.
  2. Click on the style button you want from the choices in Home > Font.


    To make text bold face, press ctrl_b.jpg


    To make text italic, press ctrl_i.jpg


    To underline the text, press ctrl_u.jpg

    The text changes as you command.

To set additional font styles:

  1. Select the text that you want to style.
  2. At the lower-right corner of the Font group, click the Open Font Dialog Box button.

    The Font dialog appears (Figure 4.19). The additional font styles available in this dialog include your choice of underline style and color; double strikethrough; superscript; subscript; small caps; all caps; and the ability to equalize the character height.

    Figure 4.19

    Figure 4.19 You can use the Font dialog to make several font style changes at the same time.

  3. Make your choices in the Font dialog, then click OK to apply your changes.

Changing text case

Sometimes you accidentally press your Caps Lock key, and type an entry in all uppercase. Or perhaps you purposely made a title uppercase for effect, then later decide you don't like that effect. Rather than retyping the offending entry, use PowerPoint's Change Case feature to apply the capitalization you want.

To change text case:

  1. Select the text that needs its case changed.
  2. Choose Home > Font > Change Case, then choose the capitalization you want from the pop-up menu (Figure 4.22).

    Figure 4.22

    Figure 4.22 The five choices for text capitalization.

    Your choices are:

    • Sentence case.
    • lowercase
    • Capitalize Each Word
    • tOGGLE cASE

    The text changes.

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