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Generate random text in Word Apps
On an empty paragraph, if you type =rand(3) and press return, Word will generate "random" text for three paragraphs. Replace the three with another number if you want more or less. If you want to get fancy, you can determine the number of sentences per paragraph by adding another number, separated by a comma. For instance, =rand(3,2) will create 3 paragraphs of two sentences each. It's not exactly random text, but sometimes it's just what you need to get the job done!

[robg adds: While interesting, I wouldn't really call the output Word generates "random," given that it's the same text over and over. When I need truly random text for some mock-up of a page, I use the amazingly cool and versatile Lorem Ipsum generator at lipsum.com.]
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Generate random text in Word | 13 comments | Create New Account
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Generate random text in Word
Authored by: hmelton on Dec 10, '03 11:33:27AM

When I tried it, =rand(3) failed to work. Then I realized that it was probably just my configuration. I am a science-fiction writer and the last thing I need is a word processor that second-guesses by text, so the first thing I always do when encountering a new copy of Word is to turn off all of the autocorrect and autoformatting options.

It appears that the =rand(3) thing is a hidden 'feature' of autocorrect. I turned it back on, generated a number of quick brown foxes and then turned it back off.

I do wonder what other =xxx creatures lurk beneath the surface.



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Generate random text in Word
Authored by: poohyao on Dec 11, '03 11:19:22AM

One advantage lipsum.com has over Word's =rand(x) is that lipsum.com correctly places one blank space at the end of a sentence; Word places two blank spaces. You may have learned to smack the space bar twice when taking typing on a typewriter 20 years ago...but one space is considered correct in the word processing world.



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Generate random text in Word
Authored by: Anonymous on Dec 10, '03 12:04:10PM

Also a feature on Windows ...



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Generate random text in Word
Authored by: BlakeyRat on Dec 10, '03 01:27:43PM

It's been in Word for as long as AutoCorrect has been in Word, which I believe is Word 97 (Windows) and Word 98 (MacOS).

It's also available on pretty much every website that give Word and Office tips. I came across it a few weeks ago when I was trying to look up a way to get Word to print the gridlines it uses for the draw tools. (I never did find a way... we worked around it.)

In any case, not much of a MacOS X hint. More like a Microsoft Office hint.



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Generate random text in Word
Authored by: Fofer on Dec 10, '03 12:09:58PM

The built-in "random text" feature actually inserts the well known sentence: "The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog."

This sentence is notable because it includes every letter of the English alphabet -- helpful if you are sampling a font.

Lorem Ipsum on the other hand, is just intended as a more-or-less normal distribution of letters (as opposed to using 'Content here, content here') making it look like readable English, while not distracting the audience... so they can focus on the layout.



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Generate random text in Word
Authored by: jonbauman on Dec 11, '03 09:56:31AM
Lorem Ipsum on the other hand, is just intended as a more-or-less normal distribution of letters (as opposed to using 'Content here, content here') making it look like readable English, while not distracting the audience... so they can focus on the layout.

A normal distribution, or a Zipf distribution? IIRC, the distribution of relative letter frequencies as well as word frequencies follow Zipf's law. That is, the ratio of frequency between the nth and (n+1)th most common letter = (1/n) : (1/(n+1)).

I could be wrong, but I think text that didn't have the same letter frequency distribution would look really odd, not just full of unknown words as lorem ipsum does.

---

jon

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Generate random text in Word
Authored by: fbitterlich on Dec 10, '03 01:18:17PM

BTW, this gets localized too if you have a non-english version of Word. In the German version, for example, it prints "Franz jagt im komplett verwahrlosten Taxi quer durch Bayern."



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Generate random text in Word
Authored by: englabenny on Dec 10, '03 07:23:16PM

(off topic)

Totally funny! Haha. :D

(Don't take my amusement of the german language personal)



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Generate random text in Word
Authored by: aranor on Dec 12, '03 01:08:03PM

Ooh man, lipsum.com should be a hint! I keep a copy of the Lorem Ipsum in 12 paragraphs on my hard drive for the same purpose, because I didn't know about lipsum.com



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Generate random text
Authored by: unclecal on Dec 12, '03 09:30:53PM

MacLorem is a very cool app the generates several types of random paragraphs in several languages including swahili, high old german and hawaiian.

http://judebear.daveward.net/



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Generate random text
Authored by: gfisch on Jan 18, '04 12:16:59PM

hmm - very intersting discussion
what I actually need is not random text
but a tool that
a) merges 2 texts randomly
b) jumples existing text

any tips?



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Generate random text in Word
Authored by: gfisch on Jan 18, '04 12:18:36PM

hmm - very intersting discussion
what I actually need is not random text
but a tool that
a) merges 2 texts randomly
b) jumples existing text

any tips?



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Generate random text in Word
Authored by: poopsicle on Jul 21, '14 05:33:40AM

In Win Word you can also type =lorem(3,2) for example and get three paragraphs of two sentences of lorem ipsum text. Hope fully this'll turn up on Mac Word soon…



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