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Barry MacDonnell's
Toolbox for WordPerfect

Macros, tips, and templates for Corel® WordPerfect® for Windows®
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Page updated Aug 10, 2015

ConvertV - a macro that converts selected text to Initial Capitals, then replaces any (uppercase) "V" and "VS" (versus) in the selected block to their lower-case equivalents

Download ConvertV.ZIP (v1.01; 10/19/06; 4,614 bytes)

Compatible with WordPerfect 8-X3+

Downloading, Documentation, Modifications, and Support

Related pages -

Convert Case - a macro that converts the word under (or to the left of) the cursor, or the word(s) that you have selected, into one of several formats

For example, the macro converts SMITH V JONES to Smith v Jones.

Note that you must select the text to process first, then play the macro. You can assign this macro to a toolbar button or a keystroke combination for easy access.

Items processed into lower case are these:

V is converted to v
V. is converted to v.
VS (or Vs) is converted to vs
VS. (or Vs.) is converted to vs.
is converted to c
is converted to c.

Note that the macro was designed primarily to convert legal case names. Obviously, it can be used for titles or headlines in a document. See the comments below for more information about initial capitalization in titles or headlines.

Programming Notes

  • The macro uses a simple array to repeatedly loop through selected text, searching for, and replacing, several items. You can modify the array to add other search/replace items.
  • Note the temporary (paired) bookmark that is used to quickly reselect the same block of text between each iteration of the search-and-replace loop. (Usually, whenever a macro does something to selected text it un-selects the text. This is one way to reselect the same material so that it can be re-processed.)
  • The array code may be useful in other macros where several different items need to be processed.


Initial Capitalization in Titles and Headines

According to the Chicago Manual of Style (CMS) FAQ site (Capitalization,Titles), the rules about titles or "headline-style capitalization" are somewhat flexible. As they stated in an old FAQ:

In regular title capitalization, also known as headline style, the first and last words and all nouns, pronouns, adjectives, verbs, adverbs, and subordinating conjunctions (if, because, as, that, etc.) are capitalized. Articles (a, an, the), coordinating conjunctions (and, but, or, for, nor [so, yet]), and prepositions, regardless of length, are lowercased unless they are the first or last word of the title or subtitle. . . .

They conclude that "considerations of meaning and aesthetics can probably be
let in". In other words, the rules are sometimes broken, depending on what seems appropriate at the moment. Still, rules should be understood before you break them.

How does this relate to WordPerfect? WordPerfect stores exceptions to the rules for initial capitalization (i.e., when you use Edit, Convert Case, Initial Capitals) in a normal WP file, WTNNXX.ICR (where NN is your WordPerfect version number and XX is your language version). Words in this file will be not be capitalized when the Initial Capitals feature is used.

The WTNNXX.ICR file can be edited as any other WP file, to add or delete words (punctuation is ignored) (see footnote on this page). However, it does not contain a comprehensive list of prepositions (see the CMS quote above). In any case, many such words can also be nouns, adverbs, or adjectives. So, bear in mind that if you use WP's Initial Capitals feature with titles or headlines, you may want to inspect the conversion to ensure it meets standard rules such as those embodied in the CMS, or that it meets aesthetic needs [e.g., John Updike’s Rabbit is Rich (lower case "i") makes more sense than Rabbit Is Rich (upper case "I"), even though the rule says the word "is" should be capitalized, and WP will dutifully capitalize it].

On top of this, for some reason there is a large difference in the exception lists for the US/CE language versions of the .ICR file (which contain 70 words) and the UK/OZ versions (13 words). For example, the letter "a" is not in the UK/OZ exception files, and the conjunction "nor" is missing in all four English language lists, which means it will always be capitalized.

WordPerfect is a computer program, after all. Don't expect it to take the place of your own judgment.

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