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Filling in Web forms (like the one used to submit this tip) can be a bit of a gamble - you put in your pearls of wisdom, perhaps only to lose them all if the Web page flakes out or the browser crashes. Instead of losing all your text, "save" it by pressing Command-A to select all and then Command-C to copy the selected text to the clipboard. Do this periodically as you type and before you click Submit, and you may "save" yourself from a lot of frustration. It takes just a second to do, and the first time you need to rely on it to paste back in lost text, you'll feel smart.

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Larry Leveen


TidBITS AutoCorrect Dictionary Enhances Typinator

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[Updated on 21 March 2013 to note that no extra download is required now that the TidBITS AutoCorrect Dictionary is built into current versions of Typinator, and to update the discount text. -Adam]

When Ergonis Software released Typinator 2.0 with the capability to correct typos on the fly and import text files of errors and their corrections (see "Typinator Turns Two," 2007-06-11), I immediately thought of the TidBITS AutoCorrect Dictionary, a huge public domain list of misspelled words and their correct variants that we made available for Eudora users who wanted to take advantage of Eudora's hidden auto-correction feature (see "An ATypoKill Eudora Hack," 2000-09-04). That dictionary, created largely by Micah Alpern, has made my email messages significantly faster and easier to write, since I'm the sort who corrects mistakes in messages. For others who are less retentive, it undoubtedly ensures that messages are more correctly written.

I immediately grabbed a copy of the TidBITS AutoCorrect Dictionary, made sure it was in a format that Typinator could import, and brought it in. It appeared to import correctly, and Typinator immediately started correcting more typos in all of my applications, but things weren't quite right. It turns out that Typinator has some per-word settings that govern how the expansion takes place. In particular, Typinator can modify the case of the replacement based on the case of the mistake, but the default that was set for my imported words was incorrect for most of them. Figuring Ergonis would have some magic tools that could fix things up quickly, I sent the word list to Christoph Reichenberger, asking if he could reset all the words quickly and noting that because we and Micah intentionally placed the TidBITS AutoCorrect Dictionary in the public domain, Ergonis - like anyone else - was welcome to publish the fixed list.

Needless to say, Christoph jumped at the chance to add over 2,300 more typos and their corrections to Typinator, and a few days later, I had my Typinator-formatted word list back. I've been using it ever since, and I can say with some assurance that I would sorely miss Typinator's assistance now that I have auto-correction capabilities in every application I use. There's a flash and a sound as Typinator fixes a misspelling, making it extremely clear just how often my fingers slip on the keys.

If you're using Typinator, then, I strongly encourage you to download the free TidBITS AutoCorrect Dictionary for Typinator hope you enjoy the addition of the TidBITS AutoCorrect Dictionary to Typinator's Predefined Extras. And if you're not currently using Typinator, Christoph created a special discount for TidBITS members to thank us for allowing Ergonis to distribute the dictionary. If you join the TidBITS membership program, you can save 25 percent off Typinator's usual price of 24.99 euros.


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