Microsoft Office Tutorials and References
In Depth Information
Entering Text: Trespassing Allowed
Figure 2–22. Columns selected and prepared for autofitting
That blanket of blue cells teaches us incidentally that when you click a column heading, all the cells
in that column are selected; but what interests us here is the column width question; so now
doubleclick any one of the boundaries separating any of the selected columns, e.g., the one separating B and C,
or J and K (again, you’ll need to see that double-arrow cross). All the columns should now be resized,
with each new width reflecting the respective widths of the months. See Figure 2–23:
Figure 2–23. Autofit: one size doesn’t fit all
It’s a nifty way of Autofitting lots of columns in one go; but now you may have to contend with
another possible problem. Thanks to Autofit we can now see all the text, but since each of the months
exhibits a different width, so then do the columns housing them—and presentationally speaking, that
may not look very nice. You may want uniformly widened columns instead, but you can’t get there from
here using Autofit. What to do?
The answer is to select all the column headings as described above, but this time, instead of
doubleclicking any boundary, we click the right column boundary of the longest month—in this case
“September,” given the font being used—and drag a bit to the right. Then release the mouse. This
technique—really a variation on the first column-widening approach we cited earlier— equalizes the
width of all the selected columns; and because we dragged on the widest month’s column, naturally all
the other months should be visible as well. And if you drag and release the mouse too soon and fail to
reveal the word “September” in its entirety, note that all the columns remain selected, so you can
resume dragging until the word is completely exposed.
You’ll also want to know about another data entry option, one you’ll have difficulty ignoring in any
case. If you enter text down consecutive cells in a column and have occasion to enter the same datum
(that’s the singular, believe it or not) twice in different cells, Excel will automatically enter it for you the
second (and every subsequent) time in the cell in which you’re typing, as soon as it recognizes it. That is,
 
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