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Better Copy (or Cut) Paste functionality in Microsoft Word

As much as I told myself growing up that I did not ever want a job that involved a lot of writing (part of the reason I became an engineer) pretty much all I do now is write. Tons of writing. Part of this is always me copying parts of documents into a new document. For those of you who also find yourselves doing this (organizing my law school notes into outlines involved a lot of this) I’m sure you’ve recognized that the ctrl+c (copy) followed by ctrl+v (paste) over and over leaves you desiring more. “Wouldn’t it be easier if I just could copy everything I needed and paste it once?” Seriously, wouldn’t it?

You totally can. I feel a little lame for not looking into it earlier, but the feature is built into word. It is called copying to the “spike.” This is how it is done:

  • Selecting some text
  • Use Ctrl+F3 to copy/cut it to the “Spike”
  • Repeat for the other text you want to copy/cut
  • Paste the combined set of copied text with the Ctrl+Shift+F3 shortcut key combination (or type “spike” and press F3).

Here is some more info on the spike.

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