29 Aug 2009 by Ruben

Snow Leopard Tip: Turn on “Text Substitutions”

Snow Leopard has a great new feature: "Text Substitutions". When turned on, it helps you type your messages:

  • Text Replacements: Define short text snippets which are automatically expanded when entered.
  • Smart Links: Enter an URL and it automatically is turned into a clickable link.
  • Smart Dashes: Replaces the a double dash to a long dash character, which looks better.
  • Smart Quotes: Enter book-like quotes.

Here's how you can turn on the feature inside Mailplane:

Substitution utility window

  1. Compose a new message
  2. Control-Click the body text
  3. Click Substitutions > Show Substitutions to open the "Substitution" utility window.
  4. Turn on the substitutions you need, I find the Text Replacement feature most useful.
  5. Press the "Text Preferences..." button to define your own text replacements
  6. Now test it: Enter (c) or TM followed by space to replace the text with a copyright/trademark sign.

Tip: You can also access the text replacement settings by going to System Preferences > Text/Languages/Text:


One more thing: If you need to manage more text replacements, try Mailplane's text snippet feature. Define text snippets in Preferences > Accounts > Text Snippets and insert into your email by using the ⌘-Option-I keyboard shortcut.