There are times when I’m pleasantly surprised at the similarities between writing and coding. The difference is precision. If there’s a missed parentheses in coding, a script or probably won’t work. Whereas, dropping half of a parentheses in writing simply makes the writer look sloppy.
AutoPairs is an elegant and free Mac app which ensures that certain keystrokes will always be typed in matched pairs. Think of the times when you’ve typed only half of a parentheses, or half of curly quotes, or angle brackets or other text or code which requires matching pairs.
For example, if you type a bracket, AutoPairs makes the matching bracket and places the cursor between the brackets.
The pairs can be turned on and off individually, and configured separately for different apps on your Mac.
AutoPairs can be remarkably handy (it’s a Preference Pane so it’s always running, and there’s no Dock icon) and very useful in some Mac apps, but not all. There’s a problem running it in iWork’s Pages app. And, I’ve had it cause interference in a text editor I use (which also closes paired text within code).
As useful as it is, AutoPairs needs a few additional options, including one to simply disable the app while installed as a Preference Pane. And, since it doesn’t work in Pages, it should be turned off by default (otherwise a user will find out the hard way).