Quick solution to “Cannot send this item” problem in Outlook


Posted by Elif Varol | Posted in E-resources, Library, software | Posted on March 14, 2014

I recently came across a problem on Microsoft Outlook  (2010) when I was about to send an email with instructions including the screenshots.

As soon as I hit the “Send” button, I had an error message saying  “Cannot send this item“. Outlook didn’t give me any explanation as to why or suggest a resolution.

First, I thought the size of the email may be too big because of the screenshots but it seems, this wasn’t the case.

After a quick search, I have found out there is a nifty solution to it.

All you need to do is to go to the Format Text menu at the top and choose “Rich Text” in the Format category.

Update: For those who are using a different version, Eileen Cannon kindly shared the instructions below for Microsoft Outlook 2007.

“For Outlook 2007 users, open the Options ribbon, and choose “Rich Text” in the Format box. The “Format Text” ribbon does not contain the HTML, Plain Text, and Rich Text options”


Missing “Print” option from the File menu in MS Word 2003-Solution


Posted by Elif Varol | Posted in Library, software, Uncategorized | Posted on May 9, 2012

Earlier on, I had an enquiry from a student where “Print” option has disappeared from the File menu in Microsoft Word (2003). Whilst it is still possible to send the file to the printer, it is not an ideal option if you need to change the “Properties” under the Print command when, for example, you want to print in colour or as a single sided document.

In anticipation of more students (and non-students) might be having similar problems, I decided to write how to overcome this.

After a quick search, I have found out that there are various ways of getting Print option to re-appear. I choose the shortest route which worked well.

Below are the steps and the screenshots of how to get the Print option back on the File menu:

1. Go to the Tools menu and click on Customize.

Go to Customise from Tools Menu

2. You need to be on the Commands tab. Select File from the Categories: on the left. Scroll down and find Print from Commands: on the right.

Choose File then Print

3. Click on Print then press and hold left mouse button and drag it to the File menu. Once the File menu opens, drop it to one of the sections, ideally just below the Print Preview.

Drag and drop the print option under the File menu

You now have “Print” option back on the File menu.

User-Centred Design and Balsamiq


Posted by Elif Varol | Posted in E-resources, Library, seminar, software, Uncategorized, workshop | Posted on June 10, 2011

A few weeks ago, I went to an event in Edinburgh where user-centred design, usability in digital libraries and faceted search user interface had been introduced.

Case studies and research evidence arising from the JISC funded UX2 project had also been presented.

Usability has become an increasingly important issue in terms of reaching the users as well as keeping them on your website. I remember a basic “3-click rule” from my postgraduate studies which basically means if the users can’t find what they are looking for within 3 clicks,they would leave that website.

Most websites have some little usability problems and it is impossible to have a perfect website without flaws however, it is essential not to have major usability issues.  The best practice is to make an effort, even a small one, to provide “usable” and “useful” websites to enhanced the user experience.

Usability goes hand in hand with “usefulness” and one of the ways to improve usability is user testing which needs to be done at the early stages. Additionally, it is better to perform testing as often as possible. There maybe some concerns around testing such as cost and time however, it can be done in an inexpensive way. Guerrilla (informal) testing is ideal when you don’t have enough resources and time especially when it is difficult to recruit representative users.

It was a very useful event, afternoon session in particular where we get to experiment prototyping tool called Balsamiq. I have to admit that it is user friendly and intuitive piece of software. At present, University of Edinburgh is running a pilot in collaboration with JISC and it’s available to UK Higher and Further Education institutions however it is for a limited time only and you need to sign up with University of Edinburgh’s EASE system in order to be able to use it.

The image below is the screenshot of a prototype website I created.  It is really easy and enjoyable to use it to the extend that I didn’t need to look at my notes or the manual I was given in the session.

It’s a really good opportunity to try it out before making a purchase. By the way, the pricing for license for this versatile tool starts from $79.

Balsamiq MockUp

Overall, I enjoyed this event but I wish we had more time spent on the Prototyping session which was in the afternoon. In my opinion, it would have been better if we had the presentations in the afternoon or having a prototyping session in between the presentations however, that is not say I am not grateful to the organisers of this such useful event.