ATTENTION: You are viewing a page formatted for mobile devices; to view the full web page, click HERE.

Other Software > Found Deals and Discounts

PhraseExpander Professional for PC 79% off $29.99

<< < (3/4) > >>

There's also Typing Assistant by SumitSoft. I like the comprehensive feature set: it offers text completion as well as abbreviation expansion, plus auto-learn, auto-correct, clipboard and a launcher.  I have mixed feelings about it because of what is for me a serious drawback.  Most earlier versions of TA don't play nicely with clipboard managers, failing to enter the full text (type the short form and sometimes nothing happens).  It has its own on-board clipboard extender, but that is no match for the features of CHS or ArsClip.  6.1 was the first exception I noticed; it works happily with several clipboard managers.  I think 7.0 failed (not sure), but 7.1 seems OK on short acquaintance.

There have been times when I could type too fast for Typing Assistant to keep up, but that's probably just me and my PC.

Breevy is a good expander and corrector, but doesn't offer text completion.  I would dearly like it to have.  Comfort Keys, which is primarily a keyboard macro program, has quite a good completer - but not an expander!  I also have Instant Text, the most powerful expander, slightly more expensive than the top-level versions of Phrase Expander and Phrase Express.  It too is strongly oriented towards medical transcripionists, and doesn't have a completer, but has very good import features to ingest a corpus of text, analyse it, make appropriate short forms, and massage everything to your style.  DC has a rather old review thread of an earlier version of Instant Text.


I went through that exercise a few years back, with similar criteria (I needed something that worked right out of the box and required the least steep learning curve). One good way to do that is to evaluate them all on the same day, one after the other. Just download them and get started and use them for a few minutes each, and it becomes pretty apparent immediately which ones are the easy ones to set up, learn, and use, and whether you come across a killer Pro feature that justifies the price.

The "killer feature" will probably vary on the basis of your needs. For me the key thing was not to have to remember abbreviations (which ruled out most of the free ones), which requires that a box pops up by the cursor after I type two letters, with a specified number of phrases to choose from, which then gets filtered as I keep typing more letters, with the desired phrase rising to the top and which then I can quickly select by hitting my chosen key (tab, in my case). There were only 2 or 3 that could do that at the time.
-dr_andus (August 21, 2015, 07:06 AM)
--- End quote ---

Drifting a little off topic, but this is a pretty good approach so I am writing a broader comment.

If you're hunting for "a program to do stuff" and the point is you don't entirely know what you are even looking for, it's how I have sometimes called it "Jeopardy without questions".

All you're working on is some really vague gut feeling but that's a zillion miles from writing up an IainB level spec to what you think you need. So you just pick a good day, hopefully with some sleep behind you, maybe some caffeine in there, and then be ready to fall over at the end but you just *look* at like 20 software programs all over the map, trying to convert that nebulous feeling into something concrete enough you can begin to make rational decisions about.

Many thanks to all contributors. This has developed into a very informative thread, more helpful than I had expected.

ATM, I am trialing several products. I am curious to find out what will happen with PhraseExpress after 30 days. They claim it will continue to be free for personal use, no limitations other than having to see the license reminder - probably all over the place, but I will see.

What rules out PhraseExpander -  and also most of the other products geared to those professional markets = they don't have portable editions. For me that's an absolute must, one of the main reasons I need an expander in the first place. Once I get used to my abbreviations and phrases I want to carry them along wherever I go, to whatever machine I happen to be on.

@xtabber - thanks for pointing the license restriction to one computer only, I would have missed it.

I knew about TA and Lintalist, but not Auspex and Echo - many thanks to wraith808 for mentioning them.
And thanks to rjbull for InstantText - another novelty for me.

After checking it out, I am beginning to better understand the repeated mentioning of legal and medical usage:
Not that I need it, but this built-in smartness does make a lot of sense when I think about it.

Both TA and Breevy have portable versions.  Instant Text doesn't, that I know of.

You might care to look at John Knowles' ABCZ Typing Abbreviation System for one rational approach to choosing short forms.

There are many threads on DC about text expanders and similar applications - worth reviewing, though many are getting old, and some are heated.  For all the software they mention, they aren't complete.  Text expanders and similar products are quite a big category, though a requirement for portability winnows them out.

I will believe it if dhous uses a text expander himself; two posts in six years!

I think it's cool
~ but of course, that's envy, because I can't shut up  :-[


[0] Message Index

[#] Next page

[*] Previous page

Go to full version