It’s a little thing but it makes me cranky.

I type a lot of email addresses and login names in Word documents and Outlook email messages. Whenever I type a common first name (Richard, Michael, Dorothy), Word capitalizes it. I don’t want names capitalized automatically! Email addresses are always lowercase and frequently login names are lowercase. When the first letter is capitalized, it looks wrong and occasionally creates the potential for error when something turns out to be case-sensitive.

Word 2007 has many options to turn various auto-correct and auto-format features on and off (click on the upper left button / Proofing), but there’s no separate control over proper names.


The names are being changed when Word consults the spelling dictionary, as near as I can tell. The checkbox in the lower left of the AutoCorrect Options window tells Word to “automatically use suggestions from the spelling checker.” That’s an important feature! Many, many typos are corrected automatically when I type. Definitely don’t want to turn that off.

But here’s an interesting tip. If you hit Ctrl-Z immediately after an auto-correct change, Word will undo the change. As long as I’m alert, I can turn Richard back into richard with one extra keystroke, instead of mousing around later.

What’s more, that appears to make a permanent change in the dictionary so Word will not capitalize that word in the future. Cool!

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