One of the best things about Microsoft Office is the ability to customize applications to work the way you want. For example, the default font in Word and Excel 2010 is Calibri, 11 point. If you prefer to use a different font and don't want to have to change it for every new document you create, you can change the default font to whatever you want. What's great is that you can change the default setting for just about anything in Office, such as customizing tabs and buttons on the Ribbon, adding commands to the Quick Access Toolbar, changing AutoCorrect options and even changing the application color scheme. 


Save yourself time! Be more efficient! Use your software the way you like it.


Many dialog boxes have a Set As Default button that you can click to change default settings (e.g. page layout, font, paragraph).

Each application has its own Options menu that you should go through and tweak the settings the way you like them. In Office 2010, the Options menu can be found under the File tab:

  1. Check out the Options menu in Word and Excel
  2. Please leave a comment on the blog letting us know what changes you've made to customize your software!

Today's Extension QuickByte is written by the lovely and knowledgeable Kristen Mastel, outreach and instructional librarian with the University Libraries.  

In this week's QuickByte, we'll look at copyright and explore tips for practical use of other's content.


In today's world all it takes is a couple of clicks to copy and paste to enter the world of plagiarism and copyright infringement. Laws around these issues remain ambiguous and unclear, and questions about use must be handled on a case by case basis.  


Copyright is automatically granted at the time a new work is created. Sometimes you may be able to use something because it falls under an exception or exemption to copyright law.  Other times, you may be able to use something because your use fits within fair use, a flexible-but-confusing part of the law that enables many different types of uses under many different conditions.  


There are four factors and the question of transformativeness to consider when you are evaluating a work for fair use.  

  • The purpose and character of the use, including educational or non-profit purposes, or commercial uses.  
  • The nature of the copyrighted work.
  • The amount and "substantiality" of the portion used in relation to the copyrighted work as a whole.
  • The effect of the use upon the potential market for or value of the copyrighted work.
  • Transformativeness uses a source work in completely new or unexpected way.
If you are unsure about your use, consider contacting the rights holder, or consulting an attorney. In Extension, you can contact Neil Anderson, copyright contact.

Several non-infringing uses that do not require you to contact the copyright holder exist, including: public domain works, classroom use exemption and Creative Commons.  

Creative Commons licenses allow copyright holders to share works with the public under a variety of preset conditions. If you meet the conditions of the license on a particular work, you can make use of the work without payment or further permission. One must own a copyright in the work in order to grant a Creative Commons license. (http://www.creativecommons.org)

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  1. Review a document or presentation where you used another person's work. If you think your usehttp://www.lib.umn.edu/copyright/limitations falls under Fair Use, analyze the relevant issues around the work with the Four Factor Checklist.  
  2. Search the Creative Commons for images, videos, and other content that has been approved for re-use by the author(s) (depending on the license and your intended purpose).