WordExpander - Manual


Document Conventions

You are currently reading this manual in your browser program. You can jump between sections, set bookmarks or print this manual like any other web site.

The manual describes the software for both operating systems, the Windows and the Mac version.

  • Bold, italic type in this documentation indicates either a procedure or menu item.
  • Filenames are printed in italic letters.
  • Text input is represented in courier script.
  • Hotkeys are shown like this example: CTRL-A
  • All WordExpander settings are made via the task tray icon. To open the program menu "right-click" the WordExpander task tray icon to access the configuration menu.

This symbol indicates a useful hint.

Tips & Tricks are marked with this icon. These hints simplify the use of WordExpander by explaining procedures which you may not discover through simple use of the software.

This symbol indicates very important notes. Do NOT ignore them.

What can WordExpander do for you?

WordExpander increases your productivity by inserting frequently used text phrases into any Windows application. Simply type the text shortcut, and WordExpander expands it into the full phrase.

WordExpander can suggest words and phrases as you type: If you type in a shortcut in any application, the program will suggest suitable phrases for auto-completions .

System Requirements

  • Microsoft Windows 7/8
  • Microsoft .NET (installation will be offered if missing)

Software Installation

  1. Download the installation file.
  2. Double-click the downloaded setup program and follow the on-screen instructions to install WordExpander.
  3. Proceed with the built-in First Steps Tutorial...

Windows 7 hides task tray icons by default.

Please make sure to change the task tray icon setting so that the WordExpander icon is always shown in the tray as it displays important program status information.

Video tutorial

Using phrases

WordExpander monitors all keystrokes pressed on your computer to provide its system-wide functionality.

If you enter a text on your keyboard that matches with a shortcut associated to any phrase in your libraries, WordExpander shows up with suitable suggestions.

Key presses are an endless stream of typed-in letters. WordExpander resets the input stream buffer whenever...

  • the active program window is changed ("focus change")
  • the ENTER, ESC, TAB or SPACE or any leading delimiter characters is pressed
  • any mouse button is clicked.

Organizing your Data

All your WordExpander data is stored in one central XML file. This single file can contains two sorts of "libraries":

Phrase libraries contain...

...the list of phrases with their associated shortcuts. A phrase will be expanded after manual confirmation after the associated shortcut has been entered.

Phrase libraries allow you to organize large numbers of phrases. You can easily activate/disable individual phrase libraries.

Disabled libraries are excluded from the shortcut recognition.

Autocorrect libraries contain...

...a list of misspelled words and their corrections.

AutoCorrects are used to automatically correct misspellings as you type. This library type is not meant to expand short text to full sentences but only to correct typos.

Autocorrects are triggered automatically after entering the complete misspelled word followed by a trailing delimiter (SPACE, ENTER or punctuation marks). This is the main difference to shortcuts of phrases in the phrase library. Those are only triggered if manually confirmed.

Creating Phrases

You can create a new phrase in two ways:

  • Click the task tray icon to open the main program window, select the desired library and click on the "New phrase" button. You can then enter the phrase and shortcut.
  • In your application, highlight the text snippet you wish to save in WordExpander and press the hotkey CTRL-ALT-C to create a new phrase from the highlighted text. WordExpander will open the main program window and you can re-arrange the new phrase to the desired library and enter the desired shortcut..

A phrase consists of following elements:

  • The hint, that represents the phrase in the suggestion popupthe phrase contents. By default, it is the beginning of the phrase. The hint is also used for the EasyComplete feature.
  • The shortcut that triggers the phrase.
  • The actual phrase contents.

Using the Suggestion Popup

The suggestion popup shows up next to your cursor whenever phrase shortcuts match with your text input.

By default, the hint equals the beginning of the phrase but you can also define a custom hint.

If multiple suggestions are shown, you can navigate to the desired item by using the arrow up/down keys or by pressing the accelerator (number 1 to 9).

Multiple items are narrowed down as you type.

You can confirm your selection by pressing the confirmation key (SHIFT by default). The entered shortcut will then be replaced with the associated phrase.

The suggestion popup automatically disappears if you continue to type or if you press the ESC key.

You get additional options if you right-click an item in the suggestion popup.

Program Settings

 

Miscellaneous

The tray icon

The WordExpander tray icon sits in the bottom right of your desktop which is the main hub to control the program:

  • Click on the tray icon to open the main window.
  • Right-click on the tray icon to display the tray icon popup menu.
  • CTRL-click to enable/disable the shortcut detection.
  • SHIFT-click to edit the last executed command.

If the icon is gray-colored, it indicates that the shortcut detection is currently disabled. CTRL-Click it to reactive shortcut detection.

Sharing libraries in a network

You can easily share your phrases in an enterprise network environment.

  1. Copy the phrase file to a file folder where all computers have access to.
  2. Assign read-only file access rights to all clients who shall have no editing permission.
  3. Assign write access permissions to the client who shall have editing rights.

Start WordExpander automatically with the system

We strongly recommend to launch WordExpander automatically with your system as the program can be intuitively used only, if you don't need to manually launch it in the moment you need it. WordExpander has a very small memory-footprint and you can safely let it run in the background.

To launch WordExpander automatically with your system, just copy a program short-cut into your Windows Autostart folder.

How to uninstall WordExpander

Exit the WordExpander program if it is still running and click Start Programs WordExpander Uninstall WordExpander.

If the Uninstaller informs the user that WordExpander is still running while there is no WordExpander tray icon, then press CTRL-SHIFT-ESC to open the task manager, switch to the tab "Processes", highlight the process 'WordExpander.exe' and force the program to quit by clicking on the 'End Process' button.

General Troubleshooting

This section should help you quickly help you to solve any issue with WordExpander with a step-by-step procedure:

  • Is WordExpander actually running?

    Do you see the program icon in the lower right of the Windows system tray. If not, click the Windows Start button in the lower left of your task tray Programs WordExpander Launch WordExpander.

    If using Windows 7, make sure that the task tray icon is made visible (watch the video tutorial).
  • Make sure that no "security" program such as "Antivirus/AntiSpyware"-scanner programs blocks the keyboard hook of WordExpander (learn more).

Technical Support

Please visit our technical support section for any technical problem that cannot be solved by above tips, please.