RE: Reversing word order in Excel 2007 cells

Subject: RE: Reversing word order in Excel 2007 cells
From: "Combs, Richard" <richard -dot- combs -at- Polycom -dot- com>
To: 'Ken Poshedly' <poshedly -at- bellsouth -dot- net>, Techwr-l <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Mon, 12 Apr 2010 09:13:46 -0700

Ken Poshedly wrote:

> Does anybody familiar with the inner workings of Excel 2007 so much so that
> they know if there is a way to change the word order within a cell?
<snip> So now the remaining
> monumental task is to present the descriptions correctly with the main item
> first and then followed by the descriptors with only the first word capped.
> Lots of them are rather mundane (for instance, in a drilling rig parts
> list, "Locking pin" becomes "Pin, locking"). But a huge percentage are very
> specific ("Upper arc plate of the first rod" becomes "Plate, arc, upper,
> first rod").
> Others are just totally baffling to both the U.S. engineers and we the tech
> writers ("Forgings square-head (connected with reinforced tube of â pole)"
> becomes who-knows-what?).

Sorry, but there's simply no way to automate this. If every entry consisted of minor and major descriptors, which simply needed to be reversed (the "Pin, locking" example), this could easily be scripted.

But given the variety of entries you describe (not to mention the ambiguities), the only way to do this is by having a human look at each entry, make a judgment, and manually implement it.

I suppose a VBScript that took care of the simple reversal cases ("Pin, locking"), which you could invoke with a keyboard shortcut, would speed up the process (sorry, I'm not qualified to create one), but you'll still have to read each entry and decide whether to invoke that script or take some other action.

Richard G. Combs
Senior Technical Writer
Polycom, Inc.
richardDOTcombs AT polycomDOTcom
rgcombs AT gmailDOTcom


Use Doc-To-Help's XML-based editor, Microsoft Word, or HTML and
produce desktop, Web, or print deliverables. Just write (or import)
and Doc-To-Help does the rest. Free trial:

Explore CAREER options and paths related to Technical Writing,
learn to create SOFTWARE REQUIREMENTS documents, and
get tips on FUNCTIONAL SPECIFICATION best practices. Free at:

You are currently subscribed to TECHWR-L as archive -at- web -dot- techwr-l -dot- com -dot-

To unsubscribe send a blank email to
techwr-l-unsubscribe -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
or visit

To subscribe, send a blank email to techwr-l-join -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com

Send administrative questions to admin -at- techwr-l -dot- com -dot- Visit for more resources and info.

Please move off-topic discussions to the Chat list, at:


Reversing word order in Excel 2007 cells: From: Ken Poshedly

Previous by Author: RE: Indexes for online use
Next by Author: RE: Reversing word order in Excel 2007 cells
Previous by Thread: Re: Reversing word order in Excel 2007 cells
Next by Thread: Re: Reversing word order in Excel 2007 cells

What this post helpful? Share it with friends and colleagues:

Sponsored Ads