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Advertisement Windows Notepad has been around for a long time. The simple text editor has been part of every single Windows version A Quick Look at the History of Windows in Visual Form A Quick Look at the History of Windows in Visual Form Read More since 1.0. However, just because it’s in its fourth decade doesn’t mean it’s the best text editor. In fact, in its 30+ years of life, you can almost count the number of new features on one hand.
Many apps have now surpassed it in ease-of-use and quality of features. But what are those apps? What do they do well? And when should you use them? Here’s where Notepad falls short, plus six leading alternatives. Where Notepad Falls Short I don’t want to criticize Notepad too heavily. It has a negligible draw on your system’s resources, it opens almost instantly, and it’s still the best way for making quick notes Too Lazy to Take Notes? Try These Faster Notetaking Tips Instead Too Lazy to Take Notes? Try These Faster Notetaking Tips Instead There are several shortcuts you can take to capture everything from lectures to meeting minutes to to-do lists.
Let's explore some of those shortcuts today with these tips for faster note-taking. Read More while you’re on a phone call or chatting with a colleague. Nonetheless, when viewed alongside some of its modern competitors, you’ll quickly find some glaring weaknesses. For example, it can’t handle newlines in Unix- or classic Mac OS-style text files, it lacks advanced formatting features, it doesn’t support multiple document interface (MDI), you can’t block-select, and there are no syntax coloring, code folding, or macros… The list goes on.
Some third-party alternatives remedy these omissions and introduce several additional features. 1. Notepad++ TL;DR: Best all-round alternative text editor. The best known and most widely-used alternative is Notepad++. It was originally designed for coding and development, but it’s features have since made it popular among people who just want a more powerful text editor. Out of the box, you’ll find several additions that instantly set it apart from the Microsoft product.
There are line numbers, a more robust search tool, support for tabs, syntax highlighting, macro recording, and zoom. Notepad++ really starts to shine when you delve into the plugins. You will find a spell checker, an FTP client, a script executor, hex editors, and more. To use the plugins, either use Plugin Manager (which ships with the main app) or download your preferred plugin and install it manually.
Navigate to the plugins subfolder of your Notepad++ installation, then put the DLL in plugins, the configuration file in plugin\config, documentation in plugin\doc. Download — Notepad++ 2. Syncplify.me Notepad! TL;DR: Download Syncplify.me Notepad! for a word processing-esque experience. Syncplify.me Notepad! is more geared towards people who want to use their text editor to write rather than to code and program.
When you open the program for the first time, you’ll instantly feel at home when you see the familiar Microsoft Office ribbon across the top of the screen. Start using the app, and the similarities with Word continue: it supports drag-and-drop editing, you can customize print jobs with margins, indentations, headers, footers, and your find-and-replace history is saved for later use. Syntax highlighting for 35 programming languages is included, but you won’t find code folding, auto-complete, macro recording, or session support.
Download — Syncplify.me Notepad! 3. QOwnNotes TL;DR: Anyone who uses Notepad to stay organized should switch to QOwnNotes. Despite the growth of specialist to-do apps Evernote vs. OneNote: Which Note-Taking App Is Right for You? Evernote vs. OneNote: Which Note-Taking App Is Right for You? Evernote and OneNote are amazing note-taking apps. It's hard to pick between the two. We compared everything from interface to note organization to help you choose.
What works best for you? Read More like Evernote, OneNote, and the recently-released Microsoft To-Do Microsoft To-Do vs. Wunderlist: Everything You Need to Know Microsoft To-Do vs. Wunderlist: Everything You Need to Know Microsoft To-Do will replace Wunderlist in the coming months. Learn about To-Do's best features, what's still missing, and how you can migrate from Wunderlist to To-Do. Read More , some people still use Notepad for making lists and staying organized 7 Google Keep Features for Perfect Lists 7 Google Keep Features for Perfect Lists Google Keep has a few features that make it perfect for list keeping.
Not only can you create a checklist and sync the app across platforms, Google Keep also offers location-based reminders and more. Read More . Unfortunately, it’s not up to the task, especially if you want to do more than make a simple list of groceries. However, if you like the simplicity of Notepad compared to OneNote, you should give QOwnNotes a try. You can organize all your notes and lists into projects and sub-folders (accessible in the right-hand panel), and the app supports rich text notes, images, hyperlinks, and tables.
The presence of folders, sub-folders, and hyperlinks means you can make your own wiki. It also includes a built-in calculator and an “Import from Evernote” tool. Oh, and did I mention the app can even sync via Calendar Plus using AES-256 encryption? Download — QOwnNotes 4. PSPad TL;DR: The best alternative for coders and programmers. PSPad has been a favorite among coders and professionals for many years.
It was first released in 2001. Its myriad features are development orientated. There’s MDI, syntax highlighting, a HEX editor, an HTML code checker, a code explorer, a macro recorder, an external compiler, an FTP client, and even templates for HTML, PHP, Pascal, JScript, VBScript, MySQL and more. Like Notepad++, there’s a thriving community who have built a variety of plugins for increased functionality.
Here are 100 of them to cover your every need, from games to image editors. Read More : you can download a ZIP folder that can be unpacked into any directory. There’s also an installer, but it’s ad-supported — make sure you don’t install any unnecessary software. Download — PSPad 5. EditPad Lite TL;DR: The purest Notepad replacement. If you’re looking for a replacement for Notepad but don’t want an app with hundreds of extra bells and whistles, EditPad Lite is your best option.
Some features separate it from the Microsoft app, but they’re minor enhancements rather than complete overhauls. For example, EditPad offers a tabbed interface so you can work on several files at the same time and there is unlimited undo/redo (rather than the one step provided by Notepad). You’ll also find a more robust search-and-replace tool, and the app automatically backs up your work to prevent data loss.
Perhaps most interestingly, you can configure the app per file type. When you’re coding, you can turn off word wrapping, when you’re writing a personal memo you can turn off line numbering and turn on proportional fonts. Download — EditPad Lite 6. GetDiz TL;DR: If you’re an ASCII artist who wants a fun and quirky twist, download GetDiz. GetDiz isn’t for serious coders or people who need to operate in 50 different programming languages.
It’s primarily for people who want to make art 5 Free Apps to Turn Photos Into Art on Android, iOS, or Web 5 Free Apps to Turn Photos Into Art on Android, iOS, or Web Turn your selfies into art with these free creative tools and join the new filter craze that is now taking over the internet. Read More with ASCII characters. Sure, it’s a niche group, but it’s also a fun group. What makes it so good for artists? Well, it can read and create NFO and DIZ files, as well as ASCII art, then save the output as a GIF file.
The only drawback is the app will create the GIF using what’s visible on the screen rather than the full window. Other benefits include automatic window resizing to fit the text width of files, built-in URL support, and custom word highlighting. Download — GetDiz Which Is Your Favorite Notepad Alternative? The very notion of a “best” alternative is subjective: the right app is the one that works for you.
You should spend time testing a few different ones before settling on your long-term preference. The most important thing to take away from this article is that Notepad has been surpassed and you will be able to find a more compelling alternative, regardless of how you use the app. Which Notepad alternatives would recommend to your fellow readers? What features make them unique? Let us know in the comments below.
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I’ve always admired ASCII graphics, mainly due to my predilection towards retro gaming and large pixels in general. Just as a game like Portal twists your ideas of space and makes you think differently, games with sufficiently poor visuals stretch your imagination and make you adopt a new headspace entirely. In fact, many games these days in the independent scene deliberately minimize the graphic component while creating gameplay far greater than more visually impressive offerings.
I always keep a few like this around, and here I’ve collected a couple to keep you busy over the weekend. Warning! Some of these games will resize your screen, causing your icons to move around. ASCII Art Ship Most recently I found this fun, basic little time-waster when I wrote up wonderfl, an innovative flash development site. Celebrated shooter-maker Kenta Cho created ASCII Art Ship, and if you’re interested you can go to the site and play with the code.
Arrow keys to move, Z or X to fire. http://wonderfl.kayac.com/blogparts/779b79a64b50b4b0c461a457e3e7714d8a064690forked from: AAShip – wonderfl build flash online Shoot’Em [embedded content] For those of you looking for slightly more flashy quick fix, ShootEm is a great turret-style game. You’re defending yourself against falling asteroids and other detritus. It’s technically just a layer of ASCII over a basic 3D engine, but the effect is amazing and it’s really fun.
Tip: Save the bombs for when you really need them, and watch your ammo. Rect Winder ASCII A slightly more cerebral shooter can be found in Rect Winder ASCII. Set up barriers to block incoming shots. Resizes your screen for sure. Download link is kinda in the middle of the page. Privateer: ASCII Sector [embedded content] Want to stay in space but craving a little deeper action? Fans of Privateer and games like Freelancer or Escape Velocity should check out Privateer: ASCII Sector.
One of those insanely deep games with no graphics to speak of. Considering the scope of what they set out to do, I think they’ve done quite a good job in depicting space, battles, and planets using only the ASCII character set. DoomRL If you’ve already beaten Doom enough times that you don’t care to try again, maybe you should try it in DoomRL, the insane ASCII version set up as a “Roguelike,” after the original ASCII-based adventure/dungeon crawl game and its brethren.
While it doesn’t have the atmosphere of the original (which can still scare), it does appear to have the same labyrinthine map structure. Dwarf Fortress Lastly, if you’re really looking to throw your life away, it may be time for you to investigate the dauntingly complex and eye-boggling Dwarf Fortress. I absolutely cannot stress how complicated and addictive this game is. First, it builds an entire planet for you procedurally, building mountains, running rivers from lakes and so on.
It adds civilizations which clash, war, leave ruins, and control territories. You then pick a tiny plot of land to build your fortress on and you’re sent there with a few dwarves and a wagon to build a mighty fortress. You have to tunnel into the living rock (of which there are dozens of kinds), harvest food, build rooms and furniture — pretty much every single aspect of life is accounted for in this beast of a sim, and it is presented in the most user-unfriendly interface I have ever seen.
So why do I recommend it? I really don’t know, just try it and find out. There you have it — there are more to be found out there, but the lesson to be learned is not just that ASCII games are awesome (though they are) but that fun and intriguing gameplay doesn’t have to be wrapped in pixel shaders and photorealistic textures. Games like World of Goo and Mirror Stage (wow) managed to impress me with their ideas and depth despite simplistic graphics; keep an eye on outlets like TIGSource for more good stuff.
Title: Facebook Craze Ascii Art