Gywnne Dyer’s Evil Metric

I just figured out this thing that’s been bugging me that no one will care about. When I open Gywnne Dyer’s columns in Microsoft Word, the pages always display side-by-side instead of one at a time. Which I hate. I want Word to display one page at a time.

Dyer’s the only columnist who sends files that do this, and it’s been driving me batshit for months.

What’s the difference between Dyer’s columns and every other file? I couldn’t figure it out. It wasn’t margins, it wasn’t a mis-checked option under the View tab, it wasn’t the typeface or font size (although when I display the files at 110 per cent I get the one-page view that I want, but that doesn’t answer the basic question of why it was displaying differently and anyway I oppose such false, lazy “solutions” on principle).

Well, I figured it out. It was the page size. I went to the Page Layout tab, clicked “size”, and aha! Dyers columns are opening in format A4, which is 21 X 29.7 centimetres.

I changed the size to Letter (8.5 X 11 inches) and all is well. Dyer’s pages display one at a time, which is just the way I like to read them.

I feel so much better.

Author: Stephen Whitworth

Prairie Dog editor Stephen Whitworth was carried to Regina in a swarm of bees. He's been with Prairie Dog since May 1999 and will die at his keyboard before admitting his career a terrible, terrible mistake.

4 thoughts on “Gywnne Dyer’s Evil Metric”

  1. If you’ve never seen it, A4 is very elegant and pleasing to handle. Everything you write looks like literature. Letters get results. Your resume doesn’t look pathetic. I’ve never photocopied with it, but I’m sure it behaves in a much more civilized way.

    (…waiting for Barb Saylor to tell me to move somewhere where they use A4…)

  2. I’ve always wondered why A4 existed. Thanks for explaining it, Carle. When I submit my manuscripts for publication, I’ll use it.

    But now I wonder whatever happened to A1, A2 and A3. Were they for handwriting, the manual printing press and the gestetner? (Apologies for spelling.)

  3. Ask a silly question:

    “ISO paper sizes are all based on a single aspect ratio of square root of 2, or approximately 1:1.4142. The base A0 size of paper is defined to have an area of one m². With the given aspect ratio of square root of two, this corresponds to a piece of paper which its longer side is one metre multiplied by the square root of the square root (that is, the fourth root) of two and the shorter side being the inverse of this value. Rounded to millimetres the A0 paper size is 841 by 1,189 millimetres (33.1 × 46.8 in).

    Successive paper sizes in the series A1, A2, A3, and so forth, are defined by halving the preceding paper size along the larger dimension. The most frequently used paper size is A4 (210 × 297 mm).”

  4. Sorry to disappoint you, Carle; I just have to say that it’s amazing the things you can learn about because the weather outside is awful.

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