Attack of the colons

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2014 looks like the year of long movie titles with colons – here’s how to save yourself some typing.

More and more movies are sequels and that means longer and longer movie titles. Most have colons because the studios don’t trust us to figure out that a movie is a sequel.

Coming in 2014 we have:

  • Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit

  • Captain America: The Winter Soldier

  • 300: Rise of an Empire

  • X-Men: Days of Future Past

  • Transformers: Age of Extinction

  • Sin City: A Dame to Kill For

  • Nativity 3: Dude, Where’s My Donkey?

  • The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 1

  • The Hobbit: There and Back Again

And we’ve already had (among many):

  • The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug

  • Borat: Cultural Learnings of America for Make Benefit Glorious Nation of Kazakhstan

  • Dr. Strangelove: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb

That reminded us of a trick to save time and typing in Word.

In Microsoft Word you can use AutoCorrect to change an abbreviation into the full name. For example typing DRS becomes “Dr. Strangelove: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Bomb” by doing this:

Type the full text into a Word document, then select that text.

Go to File | Options | Proofings | AutoCorrect options or Tools | Options | AutoCorrect in Word 2003 and before. The text should be inserted for you so just type in the abbreviation e.g. drs

Autocorrect for long movie titles image from Attack of the colons at

Click Add then OK to end.

Now when you type drs follow by a space or Enter, Word will change it to the longer text.

Of course, you’re not limited to movie titles – any long text can be handled this way to ensure consistency as well as faster typing.

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