Word Count in Word
Thread poster: sonja29 (X)

sonja29 (X)
Spanish to English
+ ...
Sep 8, 2005

Is there a way to bypass the word count default settings in Word 2003, re: 2 words separated by a slash?

I have a host of such pairs in my translation, involving terminology too, and not just the formulaic "and/or", and I would like the word count to acknowledge them as 2 words. Inserting a gap on either side of the slash pushes the words too far apart and hurts the legibility and presentation value of my work.

Thank you!


Natalie  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:29
Member (2002)
English to Russian
+ ...

Moving the topic Sep 8, 2005

to Office Applications forum.


Philippe Etienne  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:29
English to French
Replace Sep 8, 2005

/ with for instance * /*, count and replace the other way around? Not elegant but may fit the bill.


Selcuk Akyuz  Identity Verified
Local time: 18:29
Member (2006)
English to Turkish
+ ...
nonbreaking space Sep 8, 2005

sonja29 wrote:

Inserting a gap on either side of the slash pushes the words too far apart and hurts the legibility and presentation value of my work.

Hi Sonja,

You may put a nonbreaking space before and after the slash.


Selcuk Akyuz


John Jory  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:29
Member (2004)
English to German
+ ...
Where's the problem ? Sep 8, 2005

Simply search & replace the / with a space, count your words, and close the file without saving.




sonja29 (X)
Spanish to English
+ ...
I can't have my cake and eat it ... :) Sep 9, 2005

Thanks, guys for all your tips.

I was actually wondering whether there was a way to both keep the slash and have Word count words separated by slash as 2 items, but I guess there is no way to bypass that. You see, the client will receive the translation from me and do a word count, which will not tally with mine because of the slash thing.

I suppose I can replace slashes with spaces for counting and then restore the slashes for the client, with a note explaining what the actual number of words is.

I do appreciate your kind help. Thanks to all!



Marek Daroszewski (MrMarDar)  Identity Verified
Local time: 16:29
English to Polish
+ ...
I think you actually can have the cake and eat it too :-) Sep 9, 2005

It could be awkward to use in practice - but it works in theory.

make MS Word count phrases like 'and/or', 'accident-prone' as two words, rather than one

make the AutoCorrect feature to use ' / ', ' - ' (i.e. leading and trailing space behind the slash and dash) instead of the regular slash or dash, while maintaining the VISUAL appearance of no space

Steps (for the slash sign):
1. in any document type the slash between hard spaces (Ctrl-Shift-Space - I will use the underscore '_' herein) '_/_'

2. Select all the three characters

3. Display the Font dialog box (Format menu) and go to the Character Spacing tab

4. Find the Spacing field there, pick Condensed option and choose the right number of points - this is the hardest step - you will need to experiment a lot, possibly 'condensing' each character (hard space) at a time and using context 'and_/_or'

When you are happy with the result (on-screen view, printout) you will need to assign a cryptic text which is to be replaced by the string of characters you have just formated. E.g. for my own purposes I type /tn and Word automatically expands this to '[translator's note]' in italics and small font. You could try to use a combination of characters which does not have a real meaning, e.g. '/and' and this would be expanded to the whole expression 'and_/_or' formated so that it looks like 'and/or'.

The AutoCorrect feature is in Tools menu.
The '_/_' characters should be selected in step 4.

5. Go to AutoCorrect in the Tools menu.

6. In the Change filed type your cryptic text ('/and') and remember to mark the Formatted text button.

7. Click OK

The same could be done to '_-_', to have a dash surrounded by invisible non-breaking spaces, so that Word counts words joined by the dash as two words.

Naturally, the customer could find out that you are 'messing' around with the spaces and trying to charge a few pennies extra, but that's a different story.




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