One of my favorite applications is TextExpander, which inserts text that you frequently use into a document whenever you type in a trigger (TextExpander calls it an Abbreviation). Mac OS X comes with a built-in mini version of this feature located under the Text tab of the Keyboard pane called AutoCorrect, which is excellent at replacing simple text strings. Using AutoCorrect can really be time-saver and help you to work faster.
Whenever you type in a few letters that you specify, your Mac will replace them with whatever replacement text you choose. This feature can come in especially handy if you find yourself making the same typo over and over, such as teh for the. OS X comes with several text shortcuts to get you started. For example, typing (c) in many applications will automatically insert the copyright symbol (©).
If you wish to establish your own keyboard shortcuts, your can do so from the System Preferences pane. For instance, you could create a new entry so that every time you type in: rmh the words “Randall Michael Hill” would be inserted.
To Create a New Typing Shortcut
- Select > System Preferences from the Finder menu.
- Click Keyboard.
- Click the Text tab on top of the Keyboard window. The first column contains the trigger text — the text that you will type to generate the shortcut. The second column lists the shortcut — what the text will be replaced with.
- Make sure the Check Spelling Automatically box is checked.
- Click the + (plus) symbol on the bottom left corner of the window.
- In the left column, type the trigger text. It should be a shortcut that you would not type for any other purpose. I like to begin mine with an x as very few words that I regularly use, begin with an x. Others like to use a semicolon (:). In this example, I am using the shortcut xrh as the trigger text which will be replaced by my full name.
- Press the Tab key.
- Type the replacement text.
- When finished, press Return.
If you find the AutoCorrect feature annoying, you can disable it entirely by unchecking the box next to “Correct spelling automatically”.
Applies to OS X Mavericks and above.