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TextWrangler for Editing Text on a Mac

Ray Dotson - October 29, 2006

TextEdit is the default text editor packaged with Macs, and though it isn’t quite as bad as Windows Notepad, it’s close. Since I keep lots of notes in text files on my computer as well as using a text editor for some web development, I found it necessary to search for a replacement.

What I found was a free program from Bare Bones Software called TextWrangler. This program is actually a sort of light version of their famous (in the Mac world) advanced text editor called BBEdit. TextWrangler is freeware while BBEdit is not.


I’ve had trouble from time to time when trying to copy and paste text from TextEdit into my wordpress blogs. Sometimes junk characters were included because of the default rich text formatting of TextEdit. This is one of the basic problems that TextWrangler has solved. The file stays in plain text with no extra characters or formatting included.

Another feature quite useful for those who are programmers or who dabble in programming from time to time, is the color syntax highlighting. TextWrangler recognizes common file types and automatically highlights the text when it opens the file. This make it much easier to read and follow the code.

TextWrangler also has the ability to compare two text documents and display the differences. This is another useful tool for programmers and probably lots of others. Of particular interest to web programmers is that TextWrangler can save files directly to an ftp server. This can save some valuable time when making quick edits to web site files.
The interface can take a little bit of getting used to, but on the whole TextWranger makes it easy to do basic editing tasks. Just remember that most of the basic keyboard shortcuts you’re used to with other text editors on the Mac will work. So, if you’re looking for an alternative to the default text editor on your Apple computer, download TextWrangler.

This entry was posted on Sunday, October 29th, 2006 at 10:47 pm and is filed under Main. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.


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