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Find Spaces

Excel
Category: Document preparation / Formatting Back to Formatting section

This command finds and highlights cells which contain sequences of 5 or more contiguous spaces. Usually such spaces are inserted instead of line breaks to move text to another line in a cell. This results in the following issues:

  • [when using CAT software] translation units created during translation will hardly be usable for future translation because of extra spaces;
  • [when using CAT software] segmentation problems - sometimes there is no punctuation mark before the spaces so the CAT software will segment separate sentences as one segment. Show example
    Example of a cell where spaces are used to word-wrap lines (spaces are underlined, the cell is made wider intentionally). This cell will be segmented as 1 sentence (and not 4 as it should be):
    We can offer the following equipment:      printers      servers       workstations.
  • [during manual translation] extra editing is required to reformat the spreadsheet before or after translation.

In order to avoid potential problems, use Find Spaces to locate cells with such contiguous spaces and then use Remove Spaces to replace them with line breaks.

Screenshot: Find Spaces dialogue

  1. Entire worksheet - select this option if you would like to highlight cells on the active worksheet.
  2. Selection - select this one if you want to highlight selected cells only.
  3. Highlight color - pick a desired colour from the list of predefined colours. If a cell contains contiguous spaces, it will be highlighted with this colour. Be careful to select a colour that contrasts with background colours that are already in use in the worksheet.

When the appropriate options have been selected, click Continue. To exit, click Cancel.

After you check all the highlighted cells and fix the wrong formatting using Remove Spaces, you can remove highlights with Remove Highlight command.

Developed by Stanislav Okhvat, 2007–2016

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