Faster Translation with Fewer Keystrokes: Abbrv Expansion and Simple Macros

For translators who do not use dictation, tapping our fingers on a keyboard is how we make a living. Any way to get words onto the screen with less typing—copy and paste, e.g.—saves us time and energy, keeping carpal tunnel syndrome at bay and easing stress. This presentation focuses on two types of software: 1. System-wide abbreviation expansion software to automate the process of inserting frequently used text and auto-correcting typing errors; and 2. Macros: recording, editing and playing back a single action or a sequence of mouse or keyboard actions to avoid repetitive motions and boost productivity.

Although Richard is primarily a Mac user and will go into detail using the programs Typinator and Keyboard Maestro, he plans to take a personal dive into Windows for this presentation. He will cover the basics of creating new abbreviations as well as specific strategies for choosing abbreviations for similar words (possible, possibly, possibility; station, situation) and demonstrate the utility of having abbreviations for commonly used words—years, months, times of day, Japanese cities. Simple, common macros will be shown, such as deleting a word forward, moving the cursor to the end of the line, copying text into and from a Google search, changing font, font size or text color, and much more.

Keyboard Maestro has saved Richard cumulatively 38 days over eight years, and Typinator 120 hours—by averaging 272 keystrokes per minute—in roughly the same period.