Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Sorting Unicode Greek in MSWord

I was admiring the wealth of resources at Mark Goodacre's rejuvenated NTGateway, and I came across a nifty Word macro for sorting Unicode Greek on the Computer Software page. The link didn't work, but there was info on contacting its creator, Steven Craig Miller, and he quickly sent me the ZIP file with the macro text and instructions. He also gave me permission to share the file here. He wrote the routine back in 2006, but this is one of those little tools that I seem to need every once in a while, so it's worth highlighting again. (I can also now confirm that the macro runs fine MSWord 2007.)
The problem is that sorting Unicode Greek in MSWord will not return the desired results since it doesn't know how to properly order Greek words with accents and breathing marks. (I'm guessing there must be a correct sorting option in a Greek version of MSWord?) Steven's trick involves using a table with the words to be sorted, duplicating the column, running the macro which strips accents and breathing marks and turns everything into capitals in one column, then running the sort on that column, and finally, deleting the capitalized sorting column. Works great!
Fuller directions are included in a PDF in the ZIP file. The biggest problem, is probably getting the macro set up in MSWord 2007 and then finding that Sort button... (That button shown at the top of this blog entry is on the Home ribbon in the paragraph section. If you have the cursor clicked in the table somewhere, then you can also find it in the Layout tab ribbon.)
Thanks to Steven Craig Miller for sharing this helpful macro! HERE is the file.

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