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Pepping up OOo Writer documents with sparklines

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Big graphs are not the only way to visualize data in a text document. Using a couple of tricks, you can spice up your OpenOffice.org Writer documents with sparklines -- word-sized graphs embedded into text. Developed by infographic guru Edward Tufte, sparklines provide a simple yet effective way of visualizing data directly in the text body of the document.

Although OpenOffice.org doesn't provide a dedicated sparkline feature, there are several ways to add sparkline graphics to your documents. For starters, you can manually construct sparklines using OpenOffice.org's own charting tools.

In your Writer document, place the cursor somewhere in the text where you want the sparkline to appear, choose Insert -> Object -> Chart, and press Create without changing anything. Now...

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