Blog Date: 
Wednesday, September 25, 2013

TIP #1: Using Microsoft Word with EasyConverter

Applying a heading style
Applying a heading style means assigning a specific inbuilt Microsoft Word style to the current paragraph.  How this heading style appears can be defined by you but it must be the built into the heading style that is used.  It cannot simply be the customising of normal text with different font styles.
You can apply a heading style to a paragraph in a number of ways: through the "Styles and Formatting" task pane, through the "Formatting" toolbar or through a pre-defined Microsoft Word hot key.

The pre-defined Microsoft Word hot keys are:

To apply the Heading 1 style:
Press: Ctrl + Alt + 1.

To apply the Heading 2 style:
Press: Ctrl + Alt + 2.

To apply the Heading 3 style:
Press Ctrl + Alt + 3.

It is possible to add additional keyboard shortcuts to extend this further.  Each style in Microsoft Word can have a unique hot key assignment.  This is done through the "Styles and Formatting" task pane.

Assign a keyboard shortcut to a style
To assign a keyboard shortcut to a style, on the "Format" menu, click "Styles and Formatting" and then do the following:
1.   In the "Pick formatting to apply" box, click the style to which you want to add a shortcut.
2.   Click the down arrow next to the style (or press Alt + Cursor Down) and select "Modify".
3.   Click the "Format" button and then click the "Shortcut key" button.
4.   Click the "Press new shortcut key" box and then press the shortcut key combination you want to assign. For example, press Ctrl+Alt plus the desired key.
5.   Look at "Currently assigned" to see if the shortcut key combination is already assigned. If so, select another combination.
6.   Click "Assign" and then click "Close".
Viewing applied paragraph styles in the document window

To review the styles applied in your document, you can set the "Style area width" in the "View" property sheet of the Tools Options" dialog.  When set, under the Normal document view, a margin will appear reporting the paragraph style applied.
To hide this option set the width to 0.

To simply view the structure of the document based upon the heading styles, select the "Document Map" option from the "View" menu.

Applying page breaks
With some digital talking book (DTB) players it is possible to navigate the book by pages as well as navigating by headings.

When creating a DTB within Microsoft Word, Dolphin EasyConverter will use Microsoft Word's page numbering as defined for the current document.  This can be seen on the status bar when in Print Layout view.

When a page is filled with text or graphics, Microsoft Word inserts an automatic (soft) page break.  You can also force a page break at a specific location by inserting a manual (hard) page break.

If you work on documents of more than several pages in length, and you insert manual page breaks, you might have to frequently rebreak pages as you edit the document. Instead, you might want to set pagination options to control where Microsoft Word positions automatic page breaks.

Inserting a page break
To insert a manual page break simply open the Insert menu, select "Break" and then select "Page break" from the available options.  This can also be done by pressing Ctrl+Enter.

A more structured approach is to adjust Microsoft Word's pagination settings so that page breaks occur automatically as required. This ensures a more consistent layout to the document.

To view and adjust Microsoft Word's pagination options, select the paragraph(s) to adjust, open the Format menu and select Paragraph.  In the Paragraph dialog open the "Lines and page breaks" property sheet.
 • Widow/orphan control

A widow is the last line of a paragraph printed by itself at the top of a page. An orphan is the first line of a paragraph printed by itself at the bottom of a page.  Selecting this option (which is on by default) ensures a page break will not result in a widow or orphan appearing in the document.
 • Keep with next.

Selecting this check box will mean your selected paragraphs cannot be separated by a page break.
 •Keep lines together.
Selecting this check box will mean your selected lines in a paragraph cannot be separated by a page break.
 • Page break before.

Selecting this check box will mean your selected paragraph will always have a page break inserted before it.

Prevent a table being split over two pages

As with paragraphs, it is also possible to prevent  rows within a table being split over two pages.

To do this position the focus on the row or rows that are not to be separated, open the Table menu and select Table Properties.  Select the Row tab and unselect the Allow row to break across pages check box.

Applying alt text to images
An image inserted into a document can contain an alternative text description.  Dolphin EasyConverter will extract this text along with the image when creating the digital talking book (DTB) or MP3 recording.

The alternative text (or alt text) is inserted by selecting the image and then opening the Format menu and selecting Picture.  In the "Format Picture" dialog, open the Web property sheet where an edit area is available to enter your alternative text description.

TIP #2: Useful Resources and Keyboard Shortcuts

Microsoft Enable
Whilst the Dolphin product documentation provides a range of information on using Dolphin products with third party products, there are other additional resources are that you might find useful.

One such resource is the Microsoft Enable website, this can be especially useful if you need information on the short cut keys for Microsoft products such as Windows and Office. The Microsoft Enable home page provides various resources such as tutorials:

For specific keyboard short cuts for the various Microsoft products go to:

TIP #3: Creating navigable headings in your DAISY book with EasyConverter

Automatically detect headings
Using headings in a document allows you to create a DAISY digital talking book that is divided into sections, these sections can be navigated by the reader.

Because the majority of Word documents don't have properly formatted headings, Dolphin EasyConverter has a setting (on by default) that allows you to automatically detect headings in a document. So, if your input file is scanned or does not already contain formatted headings, EasyConverter will try to detect them for you.

If the Word Document you are converting DOES have headings you can simply turn off this setting (go to Settings, choose input and uncheck the box 'Automatically detect headings in the document').

TIP #4: Save your MP3 or DAISY to an external player

EasyConverter and portable MP3/DAISY players
Did you know that Dolphin EasyConverter can save your MP3 or DAISY DTB directly to your MP3 or Hardware Daisy Player?  Simply choose your conversion type and then press the "Copy output to MP3/DTB unit" button and your converted file will be saved onto your external device ready to take with you wherever you go.

NOTE: In order for EasyConverter to detect available external devices you need to plug your player in first.

For further information please visit the Dolphin site.