(Un)colored Is A Modern Text Editor

(Un)colored

(Un)colored (version: 0.9.1) is a cross platform open source freeware or donationware text editor. It is currently tagged as beta.

It provides a distraction free interface with a toolbar or menu only becoming visible when the user hovers near the top of the window. It also features shortcuts to type or move through a document like Ctrl+1 for a XL header type text and Ctrl+Shift+C to clear formatting. A list of the shortcuts can be seen via the top menu.

(Un)colored-AV

Selecting any text will also highlight the toolbar to format the text. Clicking Alt is the alternative method of doing the same.

What makes (Un)colored more modern is support for emojis and its embed feature. Youtube, SoundCloud and others can be embedded directly into a document.

A document can be saved in HTML  or markdown format. The former supports themes, as in the saved HTML document can have different font sizes or colors. Currently there are four themes, Attitude, GitHub Style, Horizon and White Room.

As the author warns that (Un)colored can trigger antivirus warning, it did so on the Windows 10 machine it was tested on. Avast Virus Lab analyzed and returned a false positive (see screenshot). The more people use it the less likely this will happen in the future.

It is available for Mac OS X, Linux and Windows 7 (installer or portable) or newer and only in 64-bit format.

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OutWiker: Freeware Outliner

OutWiker

OutWiker (current version: 1.8.1) is a cross platform and freeware outliner or notes organizer. It supports plain text, HTML and wiki style notes with various markups.

Start with File—>New (Ctrl+N) and choose one of the aforementioned page types. Either manually or by using the wiki menu or keyboard shortcuts add formatting to your wiki page. The formatting and markup available include bold, italic, horizontal line, font size, preformatted text, code, bullet list, creation and last modified dates, equations (inside {$$}) and others. Wiki pages can be linked to each other as well using page:// – grab a page link by right clicking a page in the tree.

Pages can be tagged and all tags are visible and clickable on the lower left of the program Window.

Files can be attached to a note and an image preview or thumbnail can be inserted inline using Wiki—>Thumbnail (Ctrl+M). The attached files or images can be inserted in a wiki page with a user chosen width. Attached files can be executed or opened from the program using the play icon on the Attachments toolbar.

Pages can be moved and sorted within the tree. Pages can also be bookmarked for easy access when the tree gets larger. OutWiker supports global search of all text and tags and a search page type can be added to the tree to be used as a permanent place holder instead of using the menu or Ctrl+F every time.

The program’s preferences include an autosave setting, default text options and many other appearance settings. One can also set or change keyboard shortcuts for virtually all program features.

OutWiker has a selection of plugins to add features like ‘DataGraph’, ‘Diagrammer’, ‘Table of contents creation for wiki pages’ and ‘Export notes in HTML’. It is portable and available for Windows and Linux systems (ppa:outwiker-team/ppa) with python dependencies.

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ClipMan: Open Source Clipboard Utility

ClipMan is one of many utilities or programs that enhance the standard Windows clipboard (Ctrl+C). Often the main purpose of these kinds of utilities or programs is to keep more than one clipboard item on file and ready for future use.

ClipMan or Clipboard Manager does not require installation and is accessed via the system tray. Its options are as follows:

  • Choosing a plug-in directory (None exist that I know of and the program may not be in active development so plug-ins may not happen at all)
  • Keeping its interface on top and choosing its level of transparency
  • Hotkeys to show and hide the interface (Ctrl+S by default), move between saved clipboard entries and choosing to send an entry to the active or current clipboard

ClipMan’s major drawback is that it doesn’t always show the contents of the clipboard but only a description of it (see image).

The program does seem to have bugs, for example pressing Enter on an entry can result in losing that item – instead of, as is supposed to happen, sending the item to the ‘current’ clipboard ready for use and pasting. Since it is not actively developed it may not really be recommendable for every day use but the available source code can perhaps be used for those interested in working with ClipMan.

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ClipboardFusion: Free Alternative Clipboard Manager

ClipboardFusion is a freeware clipboard utility. I think good and easy ways of managing text copied to the Windows clipboard often leads to a better Windows experience and ClipboardFusion does its part.

Text Scrubbing is the main feature of the program. In the program’s settings (accessed by right clicking its tray icon) one can set all copies to be ‘scrubbed’ or only those which are copied by clicking the native Windows Ctrl+C twice. Some of the things scrubbing can do is to remove or strip any white space from the beginning of the copied text or remove all HTML code from the copied text. The Text Replace feature automatically replaces character(s) with others in any copied text. For example one can replace all instances of double quotes (“) with single quotes (‘). ClipboardFusion gives the user the option to use hotkeys to enable or disable its features, for example to temporarily disable any text replace rules one can assign a combination of keys to toggle it on or off.

A more advanced feature is Macros, one can write and test one’s own in the included C# or Visual Basic editor and also assign hotkeys to them. A selection of pre-written macros are also available for download from within the program, these include ‘Convert Text to Upper Case’ and ‘Search For Copied Text using Google.com’ just to name two.

Another feature concerns colors and images. Copying a HTML color hex value (say #FFFFFF for white) will trigger a small popup in the far right of the system tray with a preview of the color and also its RGB value ((255,255,255) for white). The same applies if an image is copied, in this case a small preview of the image will be shown. One can also set ClipboardFusion to ignore certain programs, when this is done text copied within those specified programs is not operated upon by ClipboardFusion.

The author also offers, for $24/year, the ClipboardFusion online or ‘on the cloud’ version for sharing clipboards and macros across computers and the ability to pin a clipboard item for repeated use. ClipboardFusion runs on all post 2000 versions of Windows and requires .NET Framework v2.0.

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CSS-BuMa Generates CSS Menus

CSS-BuMa is described by its author as

CSS-BuMa is a program to create pure Cascading Style Sheet Buttons

CSS-BuMa is an alternative to the CSS Tab Designer reviewed here earlier in the year or the online CSS (Cascading Style Sheet) menu generators like CSSMenuMaker just to name one. Besides being a lightweight and interesting application it has an advantage over its online counterparts in that it is possible to save menus as re-usable projects. It does not create or generate multi-level menus however as it is limited to creating horizontal or vertical pure CSS menus.

Entering button captions or text and the accompanying links is the first step in creating a menu, adding them for as many menu items as needed, then collectively for the whole menu or each item individually various settings can be chosen and edited. (Almost) everything can be set and edited including text of course but also font, background color, position, letter spacing, height, width, margin and others. An integrated color picker can aid in choosing a color as well. The same is configurable to control the behaviour of the menu in hover and visited states. Additionally a background image can be chosen for one or all the items and its position and repeat state set as well.


CSS-BuMa

In addition to the aforementioned feature of saving a menu as a project, with CSS-BuMa one can also save menus as templates where everything (color, font, etc.) is saved except the menu text. This allows future use while retaining something akin to a theme.

Finally the “Parse HTML File” tab supposedly extracts (in a “the address”;”description” format) links from an existing HTML file so the link targets can be automatically added to a menu that the user has created using CSS-BuMa. In my test of an HTML page with 10+ links only two links were parsed or shown so I am not sure about the usability of this feature.

Like many other programs from Sam Francke CSS-BuMa is easy to use even if it is not always updated anymore. It is cardware or freeware and it runs under Windows 98SE, XP and 2000.

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Enware Freeware & Dirhtml Index.html Generator II

Shortly after I wrote about the dirhtml index.html generator I received an email from its developer. In part due to my confusion about the way the sorting options were presented and how the output listing was actually sorted Eric, the enware developer, had released a new, then beta, version. It has since gone out of beta and v4.833 presents a more intuitive sorting menu (see images below).

Older version of dirhtml
Older version of dirhtml
New version of dirhtml
New version of dirhtml

In my opinion it is now easier to visualize the output because the ‘Unsorted’ option is now in a column with all the primary choices that determine the shape of the output.

Two notable omissions in the original article were that at the ‘Input/Output’ and final tab it is possible to create a batch file by clicking the ‘Save Batch File’ button or F7. This will generate a batch file and an associated .ini file. Launching the .bat will use the .ini file, containing all the settings that have been gathered by going through the program, and this will then immediately generate the required output.  This is very useful as it makes subsequent uses much easier and faster. Also worth pointing out is the ‘div_recursive.txt’ script, one of the ‘Script’ choices in the initial ‘Folders, Files’ tab. This will generate an output with a recursive listing of the folders and files being worked on. It is a very useful way of presenting the results.

I also want to take this opportunity to write about the other freeware Eric is and has worked on.

First up is the Mp3 ImageMap. This is free for non-commercial purposes and portable. The developer, Eric, describes it as

…an attempt to bring back the shock value of music finding to people who know all their tunes and searches by heart, and incorporates a rather unique algorithm for dividing rectangles into N squares.

It works by the user specifying a folder (containing MP3 files for example), file extension(s)(MP3 and WMA for example), path to the output HTML file, image (GIF, JPG, JPEG or PNG) and choosing one of several sort types and then clicking ‘Build It’. The app will use the image to generate an image map with different areas linked to the different MP3 and WMA files. A nice and fun way to listen to music or simply launch files.

Next is the ScrapBook described as

ScrapBook is a freeware, unstructured database program that holds chunks of text.

A lightweight and only 252KB download, it is surprisingly useful. It is possible to save all sorts of text with the first line of the said text acting as an index. It is also possible to differentiate and separate different chunks by placing them in different ‘cards’. To navigate between cards one can, for example, use the left and right arrows or click Alt+L, F2. Even easier is finding text by using the ‘Find’ box. It is also possible to save shortcuts in ScrapBook and use it as a launcher by moving the cursor over the text or shortcut and clicking F12. One interesting feature is the ability to ‘tag’ cards, by clicking Ctrl+space, and therefore making an index or listing even more intuitive by then viewing a list of tags (Ctrl+T). As with dirhtml ScrapBook is filled with useful features.

Finally there is CopyDate, taking a further step in making tasks easier, described as

Copydate copies files, optionally inserting today’s date/time into the copied filename.

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Dirhtml Index.html Generator

The dirhtml index.html generator is described by its author as

Dirhtml builds customizable html files from a folder branch using the gui or command line

Creating a file listing has been one of the oldest and sometimes most discussed implementations for any computer, it is obvious how to and may be even trivial to achieve a list via a search or the CLI (command line interface.)

One tool however, that offers a GUI (graphical user interface) for this task is dirhtml. The program’s options consist of 6 tabs that allow you to customize the input and output in many different and useful ways.

The first tab is called ‘Folders, Files’ and this is where the files or folder(s) the user needs to work on are chosen, those files can be filtered by type, name or even their location in subfolders. This is also the place where the output file template and/or location is chosen.

The second tab is called ‘Miscellaneous’  and offers many options all packed into one page (see below.) Here everything about the output can be customized. The user can choose to include file sizes in the output, change the date format, insert summary statistics and much more.

dirhtml

The third tab is the ‘Sorting’ options one and by comparison it is an empty tab. Two main choices are included here that allow the user to sort the way the files are listed in the output. One is ‘sort by’ where files can be sorted by filename, date, size, extension or random order and the other is ‘sort order’  where ascending, descending and unsorted order are listed. However I have not tried and am not sure how the two can work together, for example what happens if the ‘sort by’ is date and the ‘sort order’ is unsorted?

The fourth tab is ‘Default Words’ and here one can customize and include html tags (such as bold, italic, etc.) for the titles, headings and summary text of the resulting output.

The fifth tab is ‘Recursive’ options and here the user can divide the output. For example the user may want each subfolder worked on and presented separately or perhaps presented in a framed HTML page.

The final tab (see image below) gives the user the control of where the output is launched, what language or font is used and also the option to work with batch files and scripts to automate the process and even further customize every aspect of the resulting output file. Everything from working with alternate rows to using style sheets or validating the output is made possible here. The included help file has examples and a list of tags or words that can be used for the customization.

dirhtml2

All in all a very powerful program, dirhtml is now at version v4.832 and is a portable freeware. It runs under NT/2000/XP/Vista and a Windows 98 compatible version is also available at dirhtml.enware.info.

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