Investintech Launches New Microsoft Office for iPad Tutorials

When Microsoft finally came out with an iPad version of their popular document processing suite, MS Office, there were over 12 million downloads in the first week.  If you were one of them, then you’ve probably been exploring and getting oriented with the apps since then.

But working on an iPad is completely different than working on a desktop which makes it a bit difficult to adjust.  Well, you’ll be happy to know that there are resources out there to help—ours included.

We just launched our new resource page for Microsoft Office for iPad tutorials!

This resource is designed to help you keep your productivity levels up while getting the most out of Word, Excel, and PowerPoint on your iPad.  From working with the edit menu and typing on the keyboard to inserting charts and transferring files, our resource page has everything you need to get started.

Take a look!

Quickly Discover Tips For A Specific App

To help you get started, we’ve categorized tips by app—Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. You’ll find new ways to improve the way you work with each specific app whether for school, work, or your own personal use.

To boot, we included some extra tips you’ll find extremely handy. For example, we dug up tips on using Office for iPad for free. So even if you don’t subscribe to the apps, you can still work effectively with them.  In addition, we included a General Tips category as well. This is the perfect spot for any new users looking for basic guides on using the apps.

Office for iPad Categories

Just click on the app or category you’re interested in and you’ll find a list of available tutorial cards. Click on any one of them and you’ll be directed to the main tutorial page.

Head Straight To The Answers You’re Looking For

If you’re trying to find a specific tip, you don’t need to sift through each tutorial. Because some of these tutorial topics are general and thorough, they can cover a number of related tips.  To help you locate what you need, we broke the tutorials down into sub-sections.

Locating Specific App Tips

So when you’re in a category, like Word for example, you’ll see a little paper icon on a couple of tutorial cards. This indicates a tutorial with multiple sub-sections.  Click on the icon and a menu will appear, giving you direct links to each sub-section of the tutorial. This eliminates having to scroll through the entire tutorial page.

Discover The Most Popular Office for iPad Tips

Looking for a common tip? For convenience, we’ve pulled up the most popular tutorials on Office for iPad so you can quickly access the help you need most.

Office iPad Popular Tips

Keep checking in with us as we’ll be updating the page constantly with handy tips. And we always love getting your input. So don’t worry if you can’t find what you’re looking for. Let us know and we can look into adding it to the page.

Working on your iPad isn’t quite the same as working on your desktop. But with the help of a few of these tutorials you can start putting your iPad to work! Check them out!


How To Convert Your Handwriting To A Font

Writing With PenPhoto Credit: vidalia_11 via photopin cc

As the personal web grows, so does our need to customize the content we share on it. You need to add pictures to social profiles, select themes for your online accounts, and set up your preferences just right.

Your online presence is a representation of yourself, which you undoubtedly want to personalize as much as possible. This is simple enough with photos and graphics, but it’s a different story when you want to share or publish content with your own writing.

The closest you can come to digitizing your handwriting is to take a picture of a piece of paper with your message handwritten on it. While this adds a personal touch in photos, it still doesn’t really achieve the same effect for the content you create electronically from scratch.

Well, in case you didn’t know, it is indeed possible to get your handwriting on-screen with tools like,, and Font Panda, which can create a font from your writing.

Using ​MyScriptFont​ Interface

All three of these tools are similar in nature except:

  • With My Script Font, you get to select between generating a True Type Font, Open Type Font and an SVG Font.
  • Paint Font, a new improved version of My Script Font, includes special characters and character sets for different languages.
  • The template you print up with Font Panda includes international characters in their 2-page template and space for a “Fun Doodle.” As an added bonus, this service will allow you to generate revenue from your font by making it available for download.

Other than that, the process is the pretty much the same and very straightforward.

Getting Started

When you get to either one of the sites, all you need to do is print up their template and enter, by hand, each letter of the alphabet in your writing.

Scanning Handwriting Font Template

Once you’re done, scan and save the completed template into the format specified by the service (usually an image format).  Then upload the saved file directly to the site and submit it. The site will generate a font file for you which you’ll have to download and save to your computer.

Using Your Personalized Font

Installing Your Handwritten Font

To use the font simply install the file. In most cases, it’s as simple as right clicking on it and selecting “Install.”  But head over to font resource and forum for more details. They have everything you need to know on installing fonts on Windows, Mac and Linux computers.

Once the font file is successfully installed, you can use it in programs, like Microsoft Word or PowerPoint, where you can elect to use different font sets.

Select Your Handwritten  Font

And that’s it! It was pretty neat to see my own writing digitized as a font. Here’s a sample (click to enlarge):

Writing ​Converted To Font

Content Ideas And Suggestions For Your Font

When would this come in handy? The ideas are endless! You can work on projects, images, and documents that are made to order. Some ideas:

  • Adding a personal touch to e-Invitations
  • Informally signing internal documents and memos
  • Using it for digital scrapbooks and journals
  • Creating one page poster pin-ups for classrooms
  • Tailoring PowerPoint presentations, Publisher material, and OneNote notebooks
  • Writing personal letters
  • Branding your content (brochures, posters, postcards)
  • Creating funky and shareable quotation memes
  • Editing images with text

….and no doubt you can think up a whole lot more! Why not put it to the test and give it a try. See how much your own writing can improve and enhance your content.


How to Create Your Own Customized Tab In Microsoft Word 2013

No doubt that when you create a Microsoft Word document, you have one or two tools that you always use. But if those tools span a wide range of functionality, they’ll be scattered across the ribbon, forcing you to click and toggle between tabs and bury it back into the Ribbon every time.

To solve this issue, you can customize the Quick Access Toolbar and even create a few shortcuts for your formatting functions. But why not take your productivity even further and create your own tab?

You can easily get your most commonly used functions on one single tab in Microsoft Word 2013. This way every command you need is right at your fingertips without having to go back and forth between different tabs. Here’s how.

1. Right click on any tab and select Customize the Ribbon.

Customizing the Ribbon

2. In the following dialog, click on New Tab.

Creating New Tab

To label it, right click on it and select Rename. Click on OK

3. Next, create a group to organize your commands by functionality (eg. Formatting, Editing, etc.). To do this, click on New Group. You can rename and add icons for each group by right clicking on it and selecting Rename. Do this for each group you want on your tab.

Creating New Group

Now you can start adding commands to them.

4. To add commands to a specific group, ensure that the group is selected and highlighted. Then in the Choose Commands from column, find and select your favourite command. Click on Add. Or you can drag and drop the command directly into the group. Repeat this for every command you want to include.

Adding Commands to Tab

If you’d like to change the order, simply rearrange them by moving them up or down the list.

5.  Click on OK when you’re finishedand your customized tab will be added to the main Ribbon.

New Tab in Ribbon

There are a number of ways to get Microsoft Word customized to your liking. Getting your very own tab set up is one of the easiest ways to do it. What other ways do you have MS Word 2013 tailored to your needs?


5 Handy Tips On Using Social Media For Research

Social Media Word CloudPhoto Credit: daniel_iversen via photopin cc

Are you using social media for research? If not, you could be missing out. Social media networks are always crawling with data: statistics, linked studies, social sentiments, background information, news reports, trends, official commentary—the list goes on.

As you can guess, however, the one real problem with using social media is filtering out all that research in order to analyze it properly.  Are you scraping information together as efficiently as you could?

Good news is that you don’t need to be a research specialist to do so. If you need an effective way to search the web and gather your data at the same time, we’ve got 5 tips to help you narrow down and convert social media posts into research you can easily sift through.

1. Track Tweets On Twitter

To start, there’s Twitter. Everyone’s used it for updates. On a monthly average, there are 255 million active users, a fact which makes the social network a rich source of real time sentiments on any given topic. Twitter is extremely helpful for getting news updates during a major conference, an event, or covering social trend.

However, instead of using Twitter’s search box to locate related mentions and tweets, use Topsy. It allows you to organize results by links, tweets, photos, videos, and influencers. You can also conduct an advanced search, specify time ranges, and select a language to narrow down your results. These features make it the most straight forward way to simplify your Twitter research.

2. Use IFTTT To Help Automate Web Page Collection

One downside to using the web for research is accumulating more web pages than you know what to do with at the moment. To help keep your bookmarking research in order, why not automate the process with a social bookmarking service like Pocket and the DIY  automated web service, IFTTT?

Pocket Google Drive Recipe

There’s an IFTTT recipe already available which you can use to record your Pocket saves to a Google Drive spreadsheet. Once your saved links are in a spreadsheet via Pocket, you can read through them later using Google Spreadsheet’s sorting functionalities. Use Pocket specifically for your research topic and you end up with a highly focused resource of links.

3. Track Mentions On The Web

To cast an even wider net for better data prospects, try tracking mentions for keywords on social media. With basic tools like Social Mention, you can simplify the tracking process. Like Topsy, it pulls all mentions for the keyword you specify.

However, this tool allows you to search across more than just Twitter and the usual social networks. You can search questions, bookmarks, news, blogs, events, images, video, comments, networks, and audio. Moreover, you can even export your search results into either Excel or CSV.

4. Convert Facebook Feeds To RSS

It’s a common thing these days to use Facebook for researching people and brands. Facebook provides companies and public figures with a quick way to update their fanbase, post related news links, or issue comments and statements. Thus, by monitoring any activity happening on their page, you set yourself up with a great resource for putting your research into context.

Facebook Wall RSS​ Feed

To simplify things, you can get Facebook Wall updates delivered to you as an RSS feed. Go to and connect your Facebook account. Once hooked up, FBRSS will create RSS feed links for all the pages you Like and the people you follow. So all you have to do is add the feed to your RSS aggregator of choice and you’re set.

5. Collect Data Using Google Forms And Google+

One of the most obvious ways to get raw data on a topic is to ask the right people, and using a Google Form is an easy way to do so.  All you need is a Google account to create a form in Google Docs. After you’ve created your form, choose to receive responses directly within a Google spreadsheet and get your data in one place.

Sharing Forms on GooglePlus​

Then when it’s created and all set up, click on Send Form and send it out to your Google Plus network. Sharing the form with specific Google Plus circles and niche communities will give you highly targeted data.  

Using social media as a research tool is one of the most powerful ways to collect information. Just one single network can churn out some interesting data. Combine that with a productivity hack or two and your research job gets significantly easier.

3 Great Ways To Share Large Files With Others

File Folder Case
Photo Credit: In 30 Minutes guides via photopin cc

You deal with large files on a regular basis, and it’s a given that at one point or another, sending or sharing them won’t always work out.

For example, you may find it convenient to use one cloud service to make your large files easily accessible to others without having to email them. Yet there are times when putting all your eggs in one basket can prove disastrous. If you use Google and discover Google Drive is down, it can take you by surprise—and not in a good way!

So if you’re working around large files like PDF documents, multimedia content, or files with high resolution images, always have a back up. Don’t be left hanging by third party server hiccups. Try a few of these tools when your usual solution doesn’t work.

1. Use Cloud Services That Offer Tons Of Space

You’ve heard of a lot of popular cloud storage services, but how many of those were geared towards sharing big files?  These ones are. They start at 10 GB for free.

4shared: With 15 GB storage and a 2GB file size limit, 4shared is perfect for frequent cloud users. Though you’re given 180 days to log in each time before your files are deleted, its file management features more than make up for it.

ADrive: You don’t hear a lot about ADrive, but you should. They offer 50GB with 16 GB sized uploads for free Personal Basic accounts that comes with a few handy features like document editing.

Send Files with Filemail

Filemail:  Though this service only offers permanent storage for paid accounts, we included Filemail because it provides the perfect temporary option for document emergencies. Send up to 30 GB sized files free with a 7 day storage limit and you can use it as many times as you like.

Box:  This is a popular service which needs no introduction, other than to say that you can get 10 GB and 250 MB file limit with Here’s a great alternative for teams that use Google Drive. With SamePage you can create, upload, and edit files, or collaborate, sync, and check in on the status of your documents. It offers 50 GB with a 250 MB file limit free to start.

2. Try Browser-to-Browser File Sharing

When all you need is one instant file transfer, you can cut out the middle man and eliminate the installations by using browser-based file sharing services. No need to install third party tools or set up publicly shared folders. All you have to do is keep your browser opened.

Sharefest Interface Using the connection established by a web browser,, a P2P web client, makes sharing files as simple as dragging a file onto a tab. This service works with WebRTC browsers, Firefox and Chrome specifically. It’s still in Alpha so there’s still a bit more to expect. Read more about it here. A browser based real-time file sharing service that lets you share your file via a pick up link. With, you can get 250 MB storage without an account. Files are available for 30 days and only accessible to users with the link. Like the other services,  this site lets you transfer files of any size. Just upload your file to Plustransfer and give the generated link to your recipient. You will need an email address, however, and the recipient’s email address, but no registration is required. Files are uploaded to the cloud-based solution and users have one week to pick up the file.

Justbeamit: With Justbeamit, you drag your file onto the page and click on Create Link. You’re given a one-time use link which your recipient can simply drop into a browser to pick up the file.

3. Share Files Directly Between Computers

To simplify your document transfers even more, try sharing your files across shared folders and networks. Although doing so requires a bit of technical know-how, we found the simplest tutorials on how to start transferring your files from:

Mac OS X to Windows: offers an easy to follow tutorial on how to share Mac OS X folders with Windows 7 or 8

Windows to Linux Files

Image Credit:

Windows to Linux (Ubuntu):  To create a shared folder in Windows 8.1 and share it with Ubuntu, follow the linked tutorial from This shows you how to access the shared folder via command line in Linux. Uncomfortable with the command line? Follow’s tutorial, which teaches you how to share files from Linux to Windows using the same Samba utility, but via the interface.

Different systems on your own computer:  Using a virtual machine? can show you how to do that, as well. Their tutorial on how to share files with a virtual machine will walk you through it step by step.

So when your main cloud drive goes down and you feel like your entire day is about to go wrong, don’t panic. You can still come out on top. One or two of these methods can simplify and even improve how you work with your documents.