Word Wrap

What Does Word Wrap Mean?

Word wrap is a word processing feature that forces all text to be confined within defined margins. When a line of text is filled, the word processor automatically moves the text to the next line, so the user doesn’t have to press the return key after every line. Word wrap also occurs if the document’s margins are changed.

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Techopedia Explains Word Wrap

Word wrap is a text editor or word processor feature that breaks lines between words to adjust them within specified margins. This action is performed on the fly; if the user changes the margin, the line is automatically repositioned to ensure that the text is within margins and is visible.

Breaks that occur as a result of word wrapping are called soft returns, while hard returns create new paragraphs. Soft returns are placed at the end of complete words or following the punctuation at the end of a sentence. Words without hyphens may also be wrapped to the following line using soft hyphens.

Word wrapping is performed using algorithms. It is generally implemented based on minimum word length to provide the best appearance and readability.

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Margaret Rouse

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.