Those who type a lot, take notice: Ettore Software has released a significant update to the long-standing text expansion utility TypeIt4Me. Version 5.0 trades its System Preferences pane for a standalone application that opens the Edit Clippings and Preferences windows more quickly. The latest version is also fully 64-bit compatible, enables users to resize the Edit Clippings window, and increases text expansion responsiveness. Also, an option has been added that enables a period to require a second trigger before expanding and automatic updating via Sparkle has been added. TypeIt4Me 5.0 requires Mac OS X 10.5 or later. ($27 new, $9 upgrade, 5.2 MB)
I first heard about TypeIt4Me in a book called Mac Secrets, written by David Pogue. This was 1989. I do a lot of writing and this was exactly what I was looking for. I created my own "shorthand" system using this, so that my fingers don't do a lot of work, but the computer does.
TypeIt4Me has been around, on various incarnations of the MacOS for more than 20 years. And it just gets better and better. The latest version works seamlessly and globally on every application, including the Finder (unless you tell it not to in the preferences).
Many have copied TypeIt4Me, but this was the first, by years and is still the best.
After having used this since version one (free on a floppy in the Mac Secrets book!), I was pleased to discover by accident the other day, that TypeIt4Me works in Japanese too! This opens up new - apologies for the word - vistas!
I have used TypeIt4Me and Spell Catcher constantly for years. Both are excellent productivity enhancers.
Unfortunately TypeIt4Me 5.0 will not work when Spell Catcher is active. Riccardo Ettore, the developer of TypeIt4Me said "I'll have to investigate and see if I can fix it." on April 18, 2010.
I've been using TypeIt4Me for many years. I couldn't work without it. There's also a version for the iPhone, called TapIt4Me.
I use Typinator, and have been very pleased with the fast personal service from the (I think) German HQ, especially for transferring my huge library of abbreviations from Word into Typinator. It would be great to have a spreadsheet comparing features on these and the competition. For example, Typinator expansions don't work reliably in many email contexts (I mainly use Gmail). And none of them, that I know of, will put/remove parens around a highlighted passage in one click, which is often handy. And, is it a universal fault that the expansions won't be allowed by software asking for your email address; they simply treat it as if you had not typed anything in there.
So, how does TextExpander fare against the other programs, especially Spell Catcher?
SmileOnMyMac has a comparison chart at http://www.smileonmymac.com/TextExpander/compare.html
But as with all such things, I suspect Riccardo Ettore (TypeIt4Me) and Christoph Reichenberger (Typinator) might suggest other features to compare.