AutoCorrect Anything in Windows with AutoHotkey

Commonly Misspelled Words Instantly Correct Themselves Right Before Your Eyes

I’ve been using AutoHotkey for a number of years, but one of the most satisfying apps that I use every day—whether writing an e-mail, working on this blog, or filling out Web forms—consists of an implementation of AutoHotkey AutoCorrect. Whenever I mistype the word “the” by entering “eht” or ” teh” it automatically changes to the correct form. “Mispelling” turns into “misspelling.” “They;re” converts to “they’re.” It’s great when I make a mistake and see it fixed right before my eyes. AutoCorrect offers one of the most powerful ways for the average person to use AutoHotkey and it’s so easy to do.

AutoHotkey uses its Hotstring format for each AutoCorrect line:

::adn::and
::anbd::and
::anmd::and

In this case, each line in the AutoHotkey (.ahk) text file activates a replacement for typos in the word “and” automatically fixing the error. The AHK file found at my Free AutoHotkey Scripts page in the AutoCorrect.ahk file contains thousands of commonly misspelled words in the AutoHotkey text replacement format. (I originally found this file at the AutoHotkey Web site.) At the end of my file, I’ve included a number of personal additions. You can easily do the same by adding short Hotstrings for e-mail addresses:

::j@::jackdunning@computoredge.com

business jargon:

::IBI::International Brain Institute

or commonly used words:

::ahk::AutoHotkey

Type the letters followed by a space or punctuation and the text replacement executes.

I’ve written about how to implement automatic text correction many times in the past, but highlight it here as one of the best ways to use AutoHotkey on a regular basis. Many Windows word processing programs include their own built-in auto-correct, but the beauty of AutoHotkey lies in the fact that it works in any text editing environment—whether in a Windows program or on the Web. Plus, you can tailor it to do exactly what you want.

Beginning AutoHotkey Hotstrings 200px

While you’ll discover that AutoHotkey can do much more than AutoCorrect, you don’t need to do anything else to take advantage of AutoHotkey. When using AutoHotkey, you can do as little or as much as you like. To get started, see “Installing AutoHotkey and Writing Your First Script.” Best of all, AutoHotkey and all the scripts I provide are free.

I’ve included an extensive discussion of AutoHotkey Hotstring techniques—the backbone of AutoHotkey AutoCorrect—in the book Beginning AutoHotkey Hotstrings. Plus, I’ve written a number of blogs since the time of the original publication of this blog about variations on the topic. (March 6, 2020: Recently I wrote about how to add Auto-Capitalization of sentences to your AutoHotkey scripts.)

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jack

This post was proofread by Grammarly
(Any other mistakes are all mine.)

(Full disclosure: If you sign up for a free Grammarly account, I get 20¢. I use the spelling/grammar checking service all the time, but, then again, I write a lot more than most people. I recommend Grammarly because it works and it’s free.)

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