Do you ever run a spellcheck in Microsoft Word and then discover that it skipped some obvious typos?
The problem may be the language setting. Often I get documents to edit that have been written by more than one author and have quotations pasted from websites. And sometimes not all of the content is set to U.S. English, or a setting in the Language menu is checked: Do not check spelling or grammar.
By default, that box is checked for Words built-in Page Number style. It doesnt hurt to have the spellcheck skip the page numbers, but you probably dont want it to skip anything else.
One of the first things I do when editing a document is to select the whole thing (control + A) and go to Words language menu. If U.S. English is gray or if the Do not check spelling or grammar box isnt clear, I click on U.S. English or clear the Do not check spelling or grammar, check box, or both. If the check box has a gray check mark in it, you have to click twice. (The gray check mark indicates that some of the text will be skipped by the spellcheck.) The first click will make the check mark black, telling the spellchecker to skip all the text in the document, but the second click will empty the check box, telling the spellchecker to skip nothing. Now it will check even the page numbers, but thats OK.
Two other Microsoft Word options can interfere with a spellcheck. Theyre in the Spelling & Grammar options: Ignore words in UPPERCASE and Ignore words with numbers. I always keep these options turned off. A word in all capital letters isnt automatically spelled correctly. I recently ran a spellcheck on a document that had numerous instances of the word SAFETY in all caps. The spellchecker found SAFTEY and SAFET. Words with mumbers arent automatically spelled right either. Ive often found cases of the numeral one in place of a lowercase L. The numeral might have gotten there because of an error in optical character recognitionfor example, when Acrobat scans text to make it readable. In some fonts the lowercase L looks a lot like the numeral one. Ive even had the spellechecker stop at a word that looked fine to me, but it wasnt fine: it had a numeral instead of a letter.
If you set your language option in Word to U.S. English (or whatever language youre using) for the whole document and tell the spellchecker not to skip anything, the spellchecker will do a better job for you. Happy typo hunting!