Turn Off "Smart Quotes" in PowerPoint 2013

There are so many times when software is designed to do “smart” things for you. In many cases, those things aren’t as smart as they seem in actual practice.

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Here’s an example of something that really gets in my way. Microsoft Office loves to convert “straight quotes” to “smart quotes”. If you’ve ever wondered why your single or double quote characters seem to curl up after you type the closing one, this is what is going on. It’s probably great if all you ever type is prose, but almost everything I type into Microsoft Word or PowerPoint has at least some code in it. When the straight quotes are converted into smart quotes, the characters are no longer valid code in almost every programming language.

Here’s how you can turn off this “smart” behavior in Microsoft PowerPoint 2013. (Sadly, with every new release of Office, this type of little setting seems to move to a new “undisclosed location”.)

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Uncheck the “Straight quote” with “smart quotes” box.

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