Review: Ergonis Typinator 5

Ergonis just released Typinator 5, their text expansion app. The major new feature is undoubtedly scripting support, which enables users to create generic and versatile text snippets. Using a simple inclusion mechanism based on files in an “Include” folder, text expansions can execute external scripts and include their results in the expansion. But that’s not all.

Typinator supports scripts written in in many different languages like AppleScript, Perl, PHP, Python, Ruby, and arbitrary shell scripting languages. But there’s more to the new version. Typinator 5 supports date and time calculations — for example, you can get an expanded date that starts with today, whereby “today” is really today! It also features a new pocket calculator, with results in various formats. Also new is a backspace capability that removes characters before the expanded text. And there is the ability to insert complete text files (formatted or raw text) in an expansion.

Despite the new features Typinator remains every bit as fast as it always was, and keeps behaving like a good Mac OS X citizen, with a very small memory footprint. Ergonis says the new version has a completely rewritten expansion mechanism and many internal optimizations that take Typinator to a new level and that allow for lightning-fast text replacement and unrivaled compatibility with arbitrary target applications.

Typinator is now a universal 32/64-bit binary and requires Mac OS X 10.5 or newer to make best use of current system architectures.

Christoph Reichenberger, CEO of Ergonis Software says it took him and his team two years of development and internal testing. “We are proud to finally present the most versatile scripting solution for text expansions. We managed to make powerful scripts usable for everyone, even without programming knowledge,” he said.

“And programmers can easily extend the scripting repertoire of Typinator with even more features like stock quotes, calendar functions, time zone calculations, clipboard manipulation, URL processing, dynamic signatures, context-sensitive code fragments. The possible uses are virtually unlimited.”

Guenther Blaschek, CTO of Ergonis Software, adds: “One of the best things of Typinator’s scripting feature is its flexible technology under the hood. Parameters and persistent variables enable script developers to combine multiple scripts and communicate with Typinator in novel ways. These details open the door for many future extensions. We are excited about the new possibilities and can’t wait to take Typinator to the next three or four levels in the next releases to come.”

I’m sure that is true, and very important to the developer as well as to those who are going to write and share Typinator scripts. For us mere mortals, though, what counts is that Typinator has just become — well, quite powerful — without sacrificing ease-of-use or speed.

The upgrade to Typinator 5 is free for anyone who has purchased a license on or after June 1st 2011 as well as for anyone who is still covered by a previously purchased time-based license. Other users of a previous Typinator license may upgrade to Typinator 5 for €12.49 (single license). For information about purchases, including enterprise licenses, volume discounts, and upgrade pricing offers, see the company’s web site.

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