TextExpander: Plain Text to HTML Paragraphs21 Mar 2015
TextExpander is one of my most frequently used Mac utilities and I have all sorts of snippets that help me with all sorts of tasks. From correcting my seldom perfect typing and inserting standard sets of boilerplate text through to more advanced ones that produce fill-in forms and carry out conversions of clipboard text. This focus of this post certainly falls into the latter, but does so in doing something surprisingly simple. It takes plain text and simply adds HTML paragraph tags in at the appropriate locations.
As I said this isn’t something that is incredibly complex, but it is something I find quite useful. I’m often writing in plain text and then want to convert in into some basic HTML paragraphs before I get into applying more complex HTML.
The snippet runs a small Perl script to do the
conversion. Once it fetches the text from the clipboard it looks for
blank lines in the text and inserts paragraph markers between them. The
line that does this is
$text =~ s/\n\n/\n<\/p>\n<p>\n/g; It looks
for two consecutive new lines and then replaces it with a newline,
closing paragraph tag, two further new lines, an opening paragraph tag
and finally another new line.
Since this replaces only the blank lines within the clipboard text with blank lines wrapped in reversed HTML paragraph tags, the final step is to concatenate an opening HTML paragraph tag to the front and a closing HTML paragraph tag to the end. The resulting get is then output by TextExpander.
Basic, but functional and saves me some tedium. Admittedly I frequently write in Markdown, but there are almost as many occasions where I want to transform some plain text into some fairly plain HTML and this just happens to be a quick way for me to do it anywhere.
|Mark plain text with
|Convert plain text to HTML paragraphs
This snippet can be downloaded as part of the Thought Asylum web snippets group.