When you want to produce the neat alignment of a table without a visible grid, create the table and turn off the border lines.
Columnar lists are a common way to share related data, but creating them can be a struggle. You can use tabs to create the columns, but doing so creates a rather unstable grid — deleting or adding values or new columns is troublesome at best. When you need a columnar list, you might find a table more flexible. For instance, I created the following list by tabbing just once between items in each row and pressing Return at the end of the line. (At this point, the columns will seldom align exactly.) To convert the list into a table, I selected all four rows, pulled down the Table menu and chose Insert and then Table. If you want the results to appear like a columnar list and not a traditional table, those border lines are a problem. To turn them off, select the table and then press [Ctrl]+[Alt]+U. Or right-click the border, choose Borders And Shading from the context menu, and then click None in the Settings section on the Borders tab. Word will dim the borders on screen, but it won't print them. You get the flexibility of a table without its visible lines.
Susan Sales Harkins is an IT consultant, specializing in desktop solutions. Previously, she was editor in chief for The Cobb Group, the world's largest publisher of technical journals.