How to save a Word doc as a PDF

It’s File / Save As…

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Then a window like this will appear…
From File Format options, choose PDF.

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In the screenshot above, from a Mac, the file location is accessed through ‘Favorites’ (seen on the left). The PDF will be stored in the same location as your source file, unless you specify otherwise.

On PCs the PDF will often immediately open once created unless you switch that setting off.

You can save Excel files and PowerPoint presentations as PDFs too (probably anything in the MS Office suite). For other file types the option give might be ‘Export as PDF’. See Zamzar below for converting other things to PDFs.

Further file conversion fun
PDFEscape is a free online tool that lets you do lots of things with PDFs. It’s aimed at Windows users but it seems to work fine on a Mac too. I’ve not used it to edit the text inside a PDF myself but have used it to combine two PDFs into one file: Converting a single A4 PDF into two A5 copies on one page

Zamzar will let you convert files into all sorts of formats (it’s amazing, never failed me yet). It works for documents, images, music, videos – even books, compressed files and CAD files (list of conversion types). You upload your file, it does the conversion then emails you when it’s done and you can download the converted file (which is later deleted from their servers).






Capturing / sharing voice memos from iPhone and WhatsApp

I discovered yesterday that you can send an audio message through WhatsApp, I think it’s probably always been possible but I only just noticed. You can also save a copy separately (by emailing it to yourself), and I thought I’d write up how to save / email voice memos from iPhone too, so I added that at the end.

This post was prompted by thinking about Andy Mabbett’s (@pigsonthewing) post about the Wiki Voice Intro Project (#wikivip), while noticing that audio messages could be shared via WhatsApp. WikiVIP is about inviting people who have a Wikipedia page about them to record and share a short audio introduction (“Hi I’m X and have been doing Y since Z”, sort of thing), you can see an example on Ralph Fiennes’ Wikipedia page.


1. Here’s a redacted WhatsApp voice recording (you can make new ones by clicking on the remarkably obvious blue microphone icon at the bottom of the screen which I only spotted yesterday). If you press and hold anywhere inside the pale green box you’ll bring up the options window

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2. “Forward” is the option you’re after, to email it etc

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3. Then it’s the upload icon (bottom right in the picture below) and choose email option as before, the file is in an .opus format – I’ve never handled those before but there are file conversion tools [Zamzar – file converter (no download required)]

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iPhone voice memo app

This lets you record audio for as long as you have enough space on your phone to accommodate it. I’ve recorded several things longer than an hour, though I tend to split them up. Obviously longer recordings are bigger files than shorter ones but you can email any file to yourself [and it might be simpler to use a USB connection and iTunes for the really large ones – iPhone: Transfer Voice Memos from iPhone to Computer] by doing the following.

1. Choose the voice memo you want to share, click on it in the list to bring up the play, upload, edit and delete icons

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2. Click on the upload icon which brings up the ways to share, then choose the email option

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3. The file is an .m4a format (if recorded with an iPhone) but you can use software tools to convert to other formats [NCH Switch MP3 Converter software (download required)] [Zamzar – file converter (no download required)]

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