Reset can fix pesky spacing


January 22, 2004|By James Coates | James Coates,CHICAGO TRIBUNE

I am an information manager for a large corporation, and I respond to hundreds of e-mails every day. I utilize the signature feature in Outlook 2002 to create standard responses to these e-mails. However, when responding to some e-mails, I get extra spaces between my paragraphs and have to delete them. This is time-consuming, and I would like to know how to fix this annoying bug.

You've got a bee in your binary blanket called HTML, which also happens to be the basic programming language that fuels virtually every one of the billions of pages that make up the Web.

Outlook can be set to automatically convert messages into HTML. These can be seen on a recipient's screen exactly as though they were Web pages in their own right, complete with the colors, fonts, frames and other bells and whistles. The problem is HTML has its own formatting rules, including that sometimes bothersome, sometimes useful, line feed at the end of paragraphs, which causes double-spacing on your signatures.

If you are willing to forgo sending high-impact HTML e-mail, you can simply change the e-mail settings to put messages into ordinary text, and that dubious double-spacing will stop.

To change your setting from automatic HTML to ordinary text with proper spacing between paragraphs, click on Tools in Outlook, then pick Options and look for the Mail Format tab that brings up the HTML versus text commands. Pick text.

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