Help with autonumbering in Word2007, please!
April 18, 2009 2:49 AM   Subscribe

How do I number individual tables in Word2007? (I don't mean numbering cells, or inserting captions). The numbering on my dissertation is now all screw up!

So, I'm writing a long chapter for my dissertation which involves lots of examples like this:

1) Aka is__ harsta.m
this clothing AC wash I
‘Wash this clothing!’ (imperative)

Whenever I switch from Word07 to other versions of Word the formatting gets all screwed up and, since I already have over 100 examples and growing, I thought best to put these examples into tables (with invisible borders) to stabalize them and avoid a mess like this:

1) Aka is__ harsta.m
this clothing AC wash I
‘Wash this clothing!’ (imperative)

The tables work great, however, they are hard to number using the autonumbering in Word. It seems impossible to have a table exist on the same level as a number, and since some examples are tables and others are not, I would like the numbering to be consistent.

Does anyone know of a solution for this? Thanks!
posted by mateuslee to Writing & Language (8 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Not precisely a solution, but I've experienced somewhat similar problems and decided to keep one machine, one version of Word as the "master".

At home we're 100% OS X (cept for a couple of UNR netbooks), but at one of the Universities where I teach (and carefully use paid office hours to work on my dissertation) we've got Word 2007. So going back and forth between the versions causes lots of issues - MS Equation, in particular, is absolutely NOT as cross platform as MS would like to otherwise represent.

So my OS X Word 2004 document is the master. If I review and make change in a Windows / 2007 based version I rename then carefully reintroduce the changes via copy and paste once the updated document is back on my Mac.

Sorta PIA I realise, but I never had time to investigate all of MS' intricacies.

PS - Good luck with your dissertation. Now I've got to stop using Ask.MeFi as an avoidance mechanism and get back to mine!!
posted by Mutant at 3:06 AM on April 18, 2009

Response by poster: @ Mutant: Thanks for the tips... sadly impossible to limit myself to once computer, and not up to carting a laptop around...
OK back to work...
posted by mateuslee at 3:12 AM on April 18, 2009

Best answer: Are you trying to put the numbering inside a cell, or outside a table? I just tried doing both (some inside a table, and some outside a table) with Word 2002, and it works fine. Can you tell us more about what you see when you try this?

Or, if you'd like, you can send it to me and I'll look at it for you. Send me a mefi mail if you want me to fix it for you.
posted by Houstonian at 3:15 AM on April 18, 2009

Response by poster: @ Houstonian: Thanks a lot! If you help me out, I'll post the fix here for posterity. I've sent you a mefi mail.
posted by mateuslee at 3:19 AM on April 18, 2009

So essentially what you want is to have a numbered list, and in each element of the numbered list should be a table?

Maybe what you should do is use excel to create a spreadsheet, and put the numbers in the first column of the sheet (you can do this pretty easily by setting the first cell to 1, and each cell after that to 'cell above me + 1')

If each example takes more then one row, you can space the cell numbering by doing 'cell n spaces above me + 1'
posted by delmoi at 3:56 AM on April 18, 2009

Response by poster: @ delmoi: And then copy and paste into the text from excel? This seems pretty messy considering that there are hundreds of examples embedded in hundreds of pages of text...
posted by mateuslee at 4:02 AM on April 18, 2009

Another option is just don't use automatic numbering. I don't use Word often, but my sense is that when automatic X is fucking up, just turning off automatic X is often easier and less time-consuming than fighting with Word to get the automatic X working like you want.

Have you tried using RTF as your "master" format?

This problem doesn't exist in TeX.
posted by ROU_Xenophobe at 7:27 AM on April 18, 2009

I had similar examples in my dissertation (as did several of my friends) and we used invisible tables too, but I think we all just hand numbered each one (which was a bit of a pain when I changed to order on some and had to re-number, but then again I didn't have as many as you did). I would hand number them and put the number in the table cell so it stays with the example.
posted by DiscourseMarker at 9:06 AM on April 18, 2009

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