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Mathcad Worksheets: Time-Saving Techniques

    Here are few time-saving techniques that will help you increase your productivity in Mathcad as you create, maintain, and reuse documents for your classes.

    Productivity

    1. F1 for Help on Functions — Pressing F1 on a function name brings up the Help page on that function.
    2. Right Click Options — To access several items that may be inserted in the worksheet, right click in blank worksheet space and choose an item from under Insert on the popup menu. For example, you can insert a page break, a component, or a table from this popup menu.
    3. Customisable Standard toolbar — You can customise the Standard toolbar with whatever commands and operations you perform most frequently. Just right-click on the toolbar and select Customise. Use the dialog box to add and remove the shortcut buttons.
    4. Docking Toolbars — All math toolbars, except for the Calculator, can be docked and their positions saved between sessions. For example, if you open the Boolean toolbar and position it next to the Standard toolbar buttons in the worksheet window and then close the program, its location is saved for your next session.
    5. Resources toolbar — The Resources Toolbar brings up sub-sections of the Resource Center, so you can jump right to the materials you most want to view, such as the Tutorials or QuickSheets. When you install an E-book, such as College Algebra or Signal Processing, it also appears in this list box for easy access.
    6. Worksheet Location — You can change the default worksheet location on the General page of the Preferences menu under Tools. Also, you can use the built-in CWD variable as a reminder of where the worksheet you have opened is located. Anywhere in the document, type “CWD=” and the path to the current worksheet is displayed.
    7. Nudging — To move a region or regions in your worksheet, you can “nudge” them using the arrow keys. Select a region or regions by holding down the CTRL key and clicking on them, or drag select a group of regions. Once they are dotted-line selected, use the arrow keys to move them up, down, left, and right.
    8. Vertical Alignment and Guidelines — To align regions vertically in the worksheet, you can use the vertical alignment button on the Standard toolbar ( ). To create a clean line of regions down the length of your document, use guidelines on the ruler. On the View menu, select Ruler. With your cursor in blank worksheet space (not in a text region), click on the ruler to create a worksheet tab. Right-click on a tab and select Guideline to create a green vertical rule down the length of your worksheet. Learn more in the Aligning Regions section of the Presenting Your Materials Tutorial.

     

    Authoring

    1. Mathcad Templates — Templates are worksheets in Mathcad that can contain all the worksheet settings, font and paragraph formatting, variable definitions, references, header and footer definitions, and any other customizations you might ordinarily make in a worksheet. You create a template by saving a worksheet in which these adjustments have been made as an MCT file. Then, if you save that template file into the Templates directory of your installation of Mathcad, it will show up in the templates list whenever you click the New File popup menu button on the Standard toolbar ( ) or when you select New from the File menu. Learn more in the Templates section of the Presenting Your Materials Tutorial.
    2. Custom units — You can create custom units definitions in any worksheet. One way to streamline your work with units is to create a Mathcad template that incorporates your custom unit definitions. That way, you only have to maintain a single worksheet (template, actually) of unit definitions.
    3. Save As Web Page Wizard — The Save As Web Page Wizard allows you to customize the output of your HTML page when you save a Mathcad document to the Web. Choose from various forms of HTML (with and without MathML) and image formats (JPG and PNG), and specify whether to use a Web template or not in order to further customise the look of your Web page. For more information about creating Web documents from Mathcad worksheets, see the Creating a MathML Web Site tutorial.

    Check out the Mathcad Usage area of the Mathcad Web Library for more helpful hints about creating Mathcad worksheets.