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Old 05-19-2014, 07:56 PM   #1
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Question cleaning up extra returns formatting mess

I know this is a frequently discussed problem: Extra returns and returns in the middle of paragraphs

I'm a speed reader and choppy pages are a pet peeve!

I searched and found several good suggestions for cleaning these up (i.e. using Find & Replace in Word, using ^p for finding paragraph returns.)

This works fantastically in most cases; however, what "replace code" can I use when the paragraph return symbol is a little crooked down arrow and not the normal paragraph symbol used in Word.

I converted an .lrf to an .rtf file in Calibre, and all the returns, including the extra ones, use the arrow symbol. I tried cut&paste, but it doesn't register.

Is there a secret code for the arrow, like ^p for paragraph?
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Old 05-19-2014, 11:57 PM   #2
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Why not try the Edit Book feature in calibre? Once you get the hang of it, you will never look back. It is infinitely more controllable.
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Old 05-20-2014, 01:58 AM   #3
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I think it is &crarr but maybe remembering wrong. Try either ^l or ^m

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Old 05-20-2014, 02:44 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by momtodogs View Post
I searched and found several good suggestions for cleaning these up (i.e. using Find & Replace in Word, using ^p for finding paragraph returns.)

This works fantastically in most cases; however, what "replace code" can I use when the paragraph return symbol is a little crooked down arrow and not the normal paragraph symbol used in Word.

I converted an .lrf to an .rtf file in Calibre, and all the returns, including the extra ones, use the arrow symbol. I tried cut&paste, but it doesn't register.

Is there a secret code for the arrow, like ^p for paragraph?
You go to the MSWord, you activate the search and replace dialog, you press options to get much larger dialog panel and then you select the "special" button at the bottom. It has the list of codes, including ^l - for the manual linebreak.

You are not looking for MSWord, you are looking for "Regular Expressions". Word has only limited abilities comparing to other tools, like Calibre. With the Regular expressions you can say:
Begin group one '\('
find one character that is not from this list: [.?!"']
End of group one '\)'
followed by an end-of-line-symbol \n
Replace with the contents of the group one followed by a space. '\1 '
In regular expression syntax that is something like
substitute/\([^.?!"']\)\n/\1 /
Unfortunately there are several dialects of RE, you will have to look it up in documentation. For example "begin a group that I will later refer to as '\1' (or '\2' and so on if it is second or a third group) is sometimes '\(' and sometimes just '('



You see, most of the linebreaks that do not follow: [.?!"] are not at the end of paragraph.
This is very quick and dirty, but can clean an OCRed book from unwanted line breaks with 99% accuracy

Regular expressions can look very intimidating if you just look at a complex one, but they are well worth learning. Calibre and many other advanced tools support them and you can start with a very simple ones and gradually write more and more complex REs. They will still be relatively difficult to read, because the metacharacter set is very dense so they can fit inside "search" and "replace" fields, but much easier to write after a bit of practice.
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Old 05-20-2014, 03:29 AM   #5
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Old 05-20-2014, 08:23 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kacir View Post
You are not looking for MSWord, you are looking for "Regular Expressions". Word has only limited abilities comparing to other tools, like Calibre. With the

...<snip>...

You see, most of the linebreaks that do not follow: [.?!"] are not at the end of paragraph.
This is very quick and dirty, but can clean an OCRed book from unwanted line breaks with 99% accuracy

<snip>...
You are apparently not aware of the 'use wildcard' option within Word S&R. That enables RegEx types of search. The example you give is possible within Word without a problem. Heck, even the syntax is almost identical. If you know RegEx, you can work with Wildcard search in Word...

@momtodogs: If you want to clean Word documents from OCR mess, I can advise you to look at my addin (see signature). It will catch a lot of OCR mistakes and either repairs them automatically or manually. It has various steps, one of them is a large list of S&R requests (an example list is available). It would also catch things like smarten punctuation and missing dialogue marks (and many other things). As a bonus, you can even export it to ePUB.
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