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TextExpander and TypeIt4Me, Round Twelve

I've written about TypeIt4Me and Textpander before, primarily here and here. Now the newly renamed "TextExpander" is out with version 1.3 and the fine folks at "Smile on my Mac" have created a little chart showing how much better their product is than TypeIt4Me.

The problem is, the things for which they get a check but TypeIt4Me does not are things about which I do not care. They are:

  • Snippets with formatted text and pictures
  • Create snippet from selected text
  • Snippet nesting
  • Services menu item to create snippets
  • Import snippets from other utilities

Worse yet, TypeIt4Me has application-specific snippets, can be enabled and disabled via the keyboard and menu bar, and can have multiple snippet files.

But the big one for me is the last one: "abbreviation trigger options." In TypeIt4Me, I have all of these options (below). TextExpander uses only space, return, or tab. Ouch.

Ti4M Triggers

P.S. The chart gets one thing wrong: TypeIt4Me has and will again before the beta is done be able to "Export snippets file," unless they're being a super stickler for the wording or something. This functionality has come and gone a few times in TypeIt4Me, and worst case, your Ti4M abbreviations file is in plain old XML.

9 Responses to "TextExpander and TypeIt4Me, Round Twelve"

  1. Why do you need an delimiter key of any sort for your snippets? With Textpander, I just create my own definitions, and as soon as I finish typing, that's it, the snippet appears. No need for any expansion key. Just use unique definitions, and it's a snap.

    If you like it the other way, then yes, you can set an option and have it only expand after the delimiter. But why bother? isn't the whole point to save typing? So just define your abbreviations such that they're unique, and you don't need the delimiter at all.

    For instance, typing 'ttt' (which won't appear in any real word) on my machine gets me this (but with angled brackets, obviously)

    [tt style="color:blue"][/tt]

    The cursor is in the middle of the tag, ready for my typing, and I didn't have to hit any delimiter. So what am I missing? What's so cool about delimiters?


  2. because sometimes you don't want expansions, and sometimes you do. By allowing me to pick the conditions that trigger the expansions outside of the expansion itself, you have more flexibility.

    Besides, I'm ex-military and a sysadmin. For me to rely on someone never using a TLA is dangerous.

  3. I agree - there are times when I don't want expansion. That's why I only define snippets that will expand when I want an expansion. 🙂

    It works really well to use double letters -- ddiv and ttig and hhref and ppre, for instance, all do very useful things on my machine, and will never be typed accidentally.

    But if you prefer delimiters, I guess that's a good reason to prefer TypeIt4Me. Regardless of which app one uses, anyone who isn't using one of these is missing out on a great timesaver.


  4. I use delimeters because I don't like to have to think of things that don't always fit inside other words. Like "hts" on my system expands to "" when I type the "/" character. "hns" expands to "" and so forth. In these cases, I'll almost always want the "/" character. And since TypeIt4Me offers so many, including end-of-sentence things like periods, etc., it always works out.

    You're forced to use "double letters" - you're not saving any typing over having to type an expansion trigger.

    Agree, though, that people should use one or the other. They're both wonderful.

  5. delimeter - those things they weigh your ham and turkey on when you're buying cold cuts.

  6. FYI: TextExpander 1.4 supports customizable delimiters.

  7. And TypeIt4Me 3.x includes all the TextExpander features I ever wanted.

    In fact, I'm not even sure why the TextExpander folks have this comparison chart on their site - it doesn't present a "win" for their product.

  8. [...] unresponsive at this time and TextExpander's feature set has surpassed TypeIt4Me's. They've made my previous comments about TypeIt4Me [...]

  9. […] When I last blogged about this, back in 2006 (!!), we were only on round 12. […]