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Tech Tip: Create keyboard tables in Word/Add Excel data series to a chart/Number Access report records

Learn how to create keyboard tables in Word, add Excel data series to a chart, and number Access report records.

Create tables with the keyboard

You can use the Draw Table button on the Tables And Borders toolbar to create two side-by-side tables. However, there's a simple alternative.

You can use the keyboard to accomplish the same results. Press [+] to indicate the cell border, and press [-] to indicate the cell's width. For example, to create a two-column table side by side with a three-column table, follow these steps:

  1. In Print Layout view, type the following: +-----------+-------------+
  2. Press [Enter].
  3. Double-click where you want the second table to begin.
  4. Type the following: +-----------+-------------+---------+
  5. Press [Enter].

You should now have two one-row tables on the same line.

If this doesn't work, go to Tools | AutoCorrect Options. On the AutoFormat As You Type tab, select the Tables check box, and click OK.

To enable the Click And Type feature in Step 3, go to Tools | Options. On the Edit tab, select the Enable Click And Type check box, and click OK.

Add a data series to a chart with a few mouse clicks

You can use your mouse to quickly add a data series to an existing chart. For example, let's say you have a chart that shows sales for January and February. To add the data for March, follow these steps:

  1. Click the existing chart. Excel will highlight the corresponding data series for January and February in the spreadsheet.
  2. Click and drag the lower handle of the selection until the third series is included.

Excel automatically adds the data for March to the chart. Expanding the existing selection works well when the data you want to chart is in adjacent columns.

For nonadjacent cells, select the cells that contain the data, and click and drag the selection to the existing chart. Excel automatically adds the selected data series to the chart and a generic name to the legend.

To add the correct name of the series to the legend, activate the Chart Wizard, and follow the steps to add the new data series.

Number report records with a calculated text box

Numbering records in a report can make it easier to refer to individual records when you're discussing the report. This is a relatively easy task.

To number the records, follow these steps:

  1. Open the report in Design view.
  2. Create a Text box control to the left of each detail line.
  3. Remove the text box label.
  4. Double-click the control.
  5. On the Data tab, enter =1 for the Control Source property.
  6. Select Over All for the Running Sum property.

Access will increment the value in the text box by 1 for each record. For grouped data, you can number each group separately by setting the Running Sum property to Over Group.

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