Don’t spend a minute more than you need to…

When you are creating a Powerpoint Presentation from scratch, you may want to populate a few slides with some random information to check how the formatting, fonts and spacing and textboxes look. It can be a pain creating this content, and it’s certainly time consuming, even if you are copying and pasting it from somewhere else.

As a virtual assistant, you make it your priority to be an expert at jobs like this, and to be quick at it too, so if you can shave some time off the length of a job that’s a bonus isn’t it?! This little known trick in PowerPoint 2010 lets you fill your textboxes quickly and easily to see how your slides will look, without you needing to mess around thinking up ridiculous short stories or random nonense! It isn’t very well documented at all, but only takes is a second!

How to ‘random textify’… (yes I know it’s not a word!)

First of all, you need your slides laid out the way that you want them, with textboxes in place for you to populate, already set with the formatting and fonts you intend to use (watch this space for future articles on creating master slides and slide backgrounds).

Once you have this in place, click into the slide you want to fill with random text and do the following:

  • Click into the text box that you want to fill, and make sure the cursor is flashing
  • Now type “=rand()” (without the double quotes) in the text box and press the enter key

Hey presto!! As if by magic you will see three paragraphs of five lines each of random text.

Tip: If you want to be clever and use random latin text then just use “=lorem()” instead of “=rand()”


Go on then – I know you’re dying to try it out… don’t forget to comment and let us know if it worked!