I can *assure* that I’m not a genius. (When I used to be a child, I dropped a bottle of milk and promptly stepped into the damaged glass barefoot. See? Not a genius.) I used to be simply extremely motivated to be taught superior word-processing options, together with kinds, as a result of I *wanted* them. (They made my work a lot simpler and sooner and led to rather more constant output.)
Look, I don’t keep in mind what Word’s default paragraph fashion is called — in LibreOffice, it’s “Default Style” — but when Word is routinely altering that fashion to one thing else as you sort, you then *are* speaking about autoformat/autotype/autocorrect (or no matter Word calls it), not kinds per se. (It’s routine for some kinds, like a heading paragraph fashion or cover-page or first-page web page fashion, to be routinely adopted by a *totally different* fashion, as specified within the heading/cover-page/first-page fashion’s definition itself, however typically talking, one thing formatted in a default fashion can be adopted by *one other* factor formatted within the *identical default fashion* until one thing or somebody intervenes.)
A template is a bunch of kinds *and* (optionally and infrequently) pre-supplied textual content, fields, and macros. You can use it as the premise for a brand new doc, or you’ll be able to import its kinds into an current doc.
I don’t keep in mind whether or not I used Office 2003 or caught with the earlier model as a substitute, however I’m nearly sure 2003 *should* have come bundled with a variety of totally different templates (for various sorts of letters, memos, invoices, and so forth). Moreover, I strongly suspect you’ll be able to nonetheless discover totally suitable third-party *.dot templates on the Net. And lastly, you can also make your *personal* templates, whether or not from scratch or by customizing templates you bought from elsewhere.
I suppose you might be certainly all the time utilizing no less than the *default* regular.dot kinds in Word. However, you don’t *have* to make use of any of the opposite ones (until, once more, Word is routinely making use of them as you sort, whether or not you need it to or not).
I now not keep in mind the finer particulars of regular.dot, however I don’t recall having issues with it. It (or its successor, regular.dotm) is the default world template for Word paperwork, and I’m undecided what you imply once you say that specialists say you shouldn’t use it. (Did you imply “ought to solely edit or overwrite it with care”?) I very seemingly edited mine to vary its default paragraph fashion, heading kinds, header and footer kinds, and the like, however generally, I create and use customized templates for necessary courses of tasks.
To simply apply the look of 1 doc to a different, I’m fairly certain you *have* to make use of kinds. Easiest is in case you’ve persistently used the identical fashion names in each paperwork. Then it’s only a query of importing kinds from the doc (or template) you want into the doc you need to change, overwriting *its* kinds. If you’ve used totally different fashion names, in a constant trend, it’s considerably extra of a trouble. After importing the “good” kinds, you additionally should seek for the “unhealthy” kinds and change them with the “good” ones. And in case you haven’t used kinds persistently or in any respect within the “unhealthy” doc, relying as a substitute on quite a lot of handbook formatting, it’s essentially the most trouble of all. After importing the “good” kinds, you would need to do a variety of elaborate searches for components formatted a selected means and apply the proper kinds to them, after which you would need to undergo the doc and manually apply “good” kinds to something your searches missed.
Generally talking, if you end up doing quite a lot of handbook formatting in each doc you’re employed on, or end up working exhausting to make them look alike, it’s an indication you should edit the bottom templates you used to create them or begin creating your personal customized templates. I simply can’t consider a means round that. In this connection, although, doesn’t Word have a post-editing autoformat command (as distinct from autoformatting as you sort)? How does that work? I don’t suppose I’ve ever used it (or if I did, I didn’t just like the outcomes).
I now not keep in mind Word’s fashion show choices. LibreOffice Writer truly has *13* totally different show choices for paragraph kinds, and I’ve solely ever wanted to make use of three of them: All Styles (each paragraph fashion within the doc’s stylesheet); Applied Styles (each paragraph fashion at the moment in use within the doc); and Custom Styles (the entire paragraph kinds that I created from scratch). All Styles is helpful for locating and making use of a mode you haven’t but used. Applied Styles makes it simple to search out and apply kinds you’ve *already* used, with out having to wade via scores of *irrelevant* kinds. And in case you suppose you screwed up one thing in a number of of the kinds that you simply created from scratch, Custom Styles winnows down the checklist of candidates even additional.
It’s potential that Word is much less easy than Writer within the above respect; I’m not solely certain what the Word 2003 Bible is saying, both. (I *do* vaguely recall that latest variations of Word checklist cases of paragraph kinds that you’ve got manually utilized totally different or extra paragraph formatting to together with the the fashion the custom-made cases have been based mostly on — e.g., “My Paragraph Style” adopted by “My Paragraph Style + preserve collectively.” Maybe “fundamental kinds” simply implies that these custom-made cases aren’t proven. And in fact, cases the place just some phrases have been manually formatted with character formatting wouldn’t present up within the paragraph fashion itemizing, regardless. When character formatting has been manually utilized to the *complete* paragraph, I don’t know whether or not that will present up as a custom-made occasion or not. I believe it *would* — e.g. “My Paragraph Style” adopted by “My Paragraph Style + daring italic” — however I’m simply undecided.) But once more, I could not have ever used Word *2003* particularly, and I actually don’t keep in mind the fashion show choices in Word, regardless.
Anyway, I’ll concede that kinds may not be apparent to individuals who aren’t “document-production specialists” and that Microsoft would possibly do a very unhealthy/complicated job of explaining and implementing them. To me, they’re only a helpful assortment of (typically elaborate) pre-defined formatting settings that I can apply to components in my paperwork with a single command. And if I need to change the formatting later, all I’ve to do it change the fashion as soon as, as a substitute of getting to do a cautious search-and-replace operation that’s neither too slender nor overly broad, after which undergo the entire rattling doc to catch the stuff my searches missed. Styles are most likely not price studying for informal customers who solely write quick paperwork and to whom structure and consistency will not be notably necessary. They are *completely* price studying for customers who should effectively produce constant, high-quality paperwork regularly.
Final Concession: If you’re working with a extremely advanced doc, it’s as much as the *person* to design a stylesheet that’s as complete as potential with out together with any superfluous kinds, after which to use its kinds *persistently* all through all the doc. When you could have dozens or scores of customized kinds, that’s not all the time simple in follow, particularly in case you overlook that you simply had a “particular fashion for that.” But for a lot of tasks, stylesheets will be comparatively easy and the difficulty simply doesn’t come into play.