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Lesson 9 – Part 2 – Adding Text from Other Software

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Adding Text from Word to the Text Editor

Chances are, at least some of the time, you will not be entering your text from this view. Most of the time, if I’m actually composing something, I usually do compose it here in the WordPress text editor now.

But I used to start off with something like a Word document like this where I entered the content. I’ve made some minor you know, styling. So I’ve got some bolded text and some sub headings and sub subheadings. I’ve got a bolded list. I’ve got bolded text with italics and this is in Word 2010.

Pasting from Word 2010

If you’re working in Word 2003 or 2007, what I’m going to show you is a little different. But Word 2010 and Tiny MCE work actually quite well together. And what you can do is just copy this content and then go back to your WordPress Editor. You may have noticed that there is this paste from Word here. Well actually in Word 2010, you can just paste directly into the visual view. And when you do that, if you switch over here to the text view very few additional codes have been added.

Pasting from Word 2007 and Earlier

But if you’re doing this inside of a 2007 or 2003 document, Microsoft Word has lots of extra code that gets added to this document. So if you’re working on one of those, you’ll definitely want to use the paste from Word rather than what I just did.

But if you’re working with 2010, you can go ahead and paste from Word directly into here. And some of this gets styled pretty close to the way you want it. Now the headings and subheadings all just came down to bold. But the bold italic stayed and the bold stayed so font size didn’t change and stuff like that I did for these. But otherwise, the standard HTML actually came across fairly nicely.

What Happens When You Paste From Word

Let’s go back over to the visual view and we’ll try pasting from Word. So if you paste from Word, this actually strips all the miscellaneous stuff that Word or Word Perfect or some other word processor like that would add.

But it does preserve some of this basic formatting. So you do get still a little bit of bold and you get the bold italic and that kind of thing. But otherwise, it strips all the other formatting out of it.

Pasting Lists

And finally, an alternative for that is to paste to text. If you paste to text and hit insert, now all of that bolding, all of that italics, all of that styling is missing. There is no code in here at all. And in fact, these things are not actually HTML lists anymore. That is just a character and a line and a blank space and a character and a line rather than being an HTML list.

So if you’ve got an HTML list, you’re not going to want to use paste to text that way because it’s not going to produce a satisfactory result for you. Otherwise, it strips everything out and results in a nice, clean format list set of text.

Something else that does that too is if you just switch over here to the text view… and if you just paste it directly in the text view, again, it also strips absolutely everything out. It also messes up the unordered list thing and in fact, it doesn’t even have any apparent paragraph marks. It just pulls everything together like that.

So if you’re using Word 10 or 2010, really, the most straightforward thing to do is just post it here. Paste it like that. If you’re using Word 2003 or 2007 then you should use the paste from Word and it’ll give you a very similar result.

Pasting From Google Docs to the Text Editor

I hardly ever use Word anymore. Now I almost always use Google Docs. And Google Docs pastes somewhat differently. So if I take my sample text that I have here in Google Docs, again, it’s formatted pretty similarly. I’ll copy it and come back over to the page editor. If we paste it directly like this, weird stuff happens. You can see that everything happens to be bolded here although we did end up unordered lists properly.

But there’s all kinds of odd formatting happening there. And if you come over and take a look at it, you can see what really happened is, everything was made bold. But you can even see that there is this little odd little piece of code, internal source marker, such and such. This is code that is added because of the cut and paste from Google Docs.

So cutting and pasting it that way is actually not particularly satisfying. You’re probably better off doing something like again, paste from Word with a Google Doc and then you can paste that in there and insert it.

Now interestingly, you still end up with this bold issue. But I do think that that extra little odd code, that extra odd code did get stripped out. You can just go ahead and solve the bold thing by selecting all the text and hitting the B button to de-bold it. Anyway, there’s a little bit of oddness associated with that. Otherwise, it comes across just fine.

The final alternative to doing that of course, is to use the paste from text although you can see that it adds significant paragraph breaks that you end up having to resolve by deleting like that. And it also fails to turn these into bulleted list items. So you end up selecting them and turning them into a bullet list. At least you don’t have to, in that case, delete the funny bullet.

Rules to Live By When Pasting

Since pasting from other software can be a little bit tricky I have a set of rules to live by for doing this. And rule number 1 is paste as little formatting as absolutely possible. I generally paste as much text as possible in the editor first. I always use paste from Word even with 2010 actually just because I’m accustomed to it. If you’re pasting from something else, use paste from Word because at a minimum, it strips out most of the extraneous code that would otherwise be stuck into it.

And then when you’re deleting, once you’ve deleted it, just make sure that it doesn’t have any extraneous code left over. Because sometimes some of the HTML codes that may be in here remain. So if something’s not arranging the way you think it ought to, the chances are there’s an errant HTML code in there that is getting in your way.

More often than not, you can solve that problem by starting off with a minimum amount of formatting before you paste. But it doesn’t always happen that way. Anyway, that’s how we paste text in the code.

Using Lorem Ipsum Text

You’ll notice that I use Lorem Ipsum text and I would encourage you to do the same thing. To find Lorem Ipsum text all you have to do is just search for Lorem Ipsum and there is this Lorem Ipsum Generator.

And you can come down here and say I want to generate so many words or so many paragraphs. So let’s generate this many paragraphs and if you generate the Lorem Ipsum, it shows that to you. And then you can just copy and paste so that you have text to use. Because without content, it can be difficult to really format your page.

Often what happens is you’re building pages that you know are going to have content but at the moment, they don’t have any. And I almost always fill those pages with Lorem Ipsum text so that I can see what the page is really going to look like when it’s got something. So I encourage you to do that.

Now when you copy this Lorem Ipsum text from something like this, you’re actually copying it from an HTML page. And in that case, you’re probably best off pasting it using paste from text because HTML also has lots of extraneous codes in it. And once you’ve done that, you can just delete out any additional paragraph breaks that might be there.

But now you’ve got a big block of code and with that your page is going to have something to display. So once we update it, we can come over and view our page. And now you’ve got a page full of text. So by the time we start setting up sidebars and putting things in our sidebars you’ll have a better sense of what the page looks like with content in it.

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