In the Mincey household there is only one adult with typing skills that go beyond mere mortal. Jeffrey is good. Our son is just about as fast and accurate. Our daughter is even faster and more accurate. And none of the three beats Mama bear. What’s the difference? I cheat.
The way I look at it, when it comes to typing with speed and accuracy, we Mac users are an inhibited lot. The Mac is the problem. Think about it. We’ve been typing away much the same way for decades. There must be a better way, but until Siri takes perfect dictation, I’ll put my money on TextExpander, the faster and more accurate Mac typing utility.
The way TextExpander works is rather simple. It resides in the background, out of sight, waiting for you to invoke an abbreviation or hotkey and then it instantly springs into action and finishes the typing for you.
With TextExpander installed on your Mac you can literally type faster than you can actually type because some of what you would normally type is typed automatically (and faster and more accurately).
It starts with a snippets library– text you use over and over which can be invoked and type automatically on command.
Snippets are easy to create and you can assign the abbreviation for each. Type the abbreviation and TextExpander then expands the text by typing the whole phrase, sentence, paragraph, signature, code or whatever– automatically.
There’s also a built-in auto correct dictionary for common typos. Even when you’re doing the typing TextExpander will auto correct your mistakes on the fly so you don’t have to stop, backup, fix the error, move forward and begin typing again.
Using TextExpander the first time is easy. Try it out on signatures, standard phrases you may use often, then add more sentences or paragraphs of frequently used text. Then, use TextExpander to drop in addresses, phone numbers, dates, and anything else that’s often typed.
As you use TextExpander it also keeps track of how many snippets it expands, how many characters it saved you from typing, and over time, how many hours of your life it gave back to you by helping you to type faster than you can type.
Any Mac user who slaves over a hot keyboard all day long can improve typing speed and accuracy with TextExpander. While it’s loaded with features, the learning curve is gentle. You can be up and running in minutes, though creating frequently used snippets will take some time and effort.
TextExpander may be the single most useful Mac app I have and it’s the one that helps Mama bear win the Mincey family speed typing contests.