Back to main page
Programs by Mike
Technical Writing by Mike
Graphic design by Mike
E-mail Mike

ABCreate Tutorials and Tips

The screenshots below were taken after running ABCreate on this document. To get similar results just highlight the text you see and copy it into a document named abcreatetuts.txt, then run ABCreate on that file.

1. Use the ... button to browse for any file Word, WP, or TXT report file on your computer.

2. When you have the file path and file name (c:\work\abcreatetuts.txt) in the files to extract field, press the Get Words button. That will tell ABCreate to start harvesting and sorting the words it finds in your file.

3. Press the Next button and skip through steps 2 and 3. These are there if you wanted to create abbreviations for suffixes and prefixes. As an example, this is where you would tell ABCreate that all words ending with "sion" will have "j" as the last letter in their abbreviation, i.e. hypertenj = hypertension.

4. At step 4 make sure you have "Use root abbreviations" and "Use endings" checked. Then choose the format you'd like for your abbreviations. Use the example section in the bottom right corner to see the kind of abbreviations you'll get with the current settings.

5. Press Next to go to step 5 and press the ... button to open the Save As dialog. Browse to a folder and enter a filename like you normally would at a Save As dialog and press OK. I suggest ending your filename with .txt to you'll be able to open it and see what kind of abbreviations ABCreate made for you.

6. Click the Finish button and open your new abbreviation file to see how it turned out.

7. Lastly, run your saved abbreviation file through your abbreviation software's converter or importer. (In Shorthand it's a program called shcnv.exe and it should have installed with Shorthand.)

Notes:

* If you planned to use the file with Instant Text, then you should end the filename with .glo instead of .txt in Step 5.

* You don't need to run IT files created with ABCreate through the IT Importer. ABCreate saves them in the correct glossary format automatically when the "Sort abbreviations by frequency" box is checked.

* Once you've created a few files this way you can go back to steps 2 and 3 and see how adding Beginning and Ending abbreviations changes your abbreviation file.

* It's also possible to harvest words from more than one document at a time by replacing the filename in step 1 with wildcards. (Use c:\work\*.doc instead of c:\work\abcreatetuts.doc.)



Tips and Tricks for Instant Text Users

An IT user can continue using IT's skip ahead on frequency-sorted words and use various letter combos to get to their words. No memorization required. All you have to do to make this work is:

1. Harvest your words in step 1.

2. Don't set any abbreviations in Steps 2 and 3. If you've already defined abbreviations in these steps delete them by double-clicking on the appropriate letter group and erasing the abbreviation.

3. Take the check out of "Use root abbreviations" in step 4.

4. Create a .GLO file with "Sort by frequency" checked in Step 5.

This frequency sorts your words into a GLO file and uses the word itself as both the abbreviation and the expansion. Since IT's "skip ahead" works in the phrase advisory as well as it does in the word advisory you can have frequency-sorted words with free-form expansion. The one difference is that you need to type the first two letters of the word in the phrase advisory, while in the word advisory you only need to type the first letter.

This is how I use ABCreate and IT in my work. I have a few (six) ending word part abbreviations defined in Step 3 and everything else is off. I use free-form skip ahead to get to my frequency-sorted words. It works really well. I have an OP glossary of 23,236 OP words that have been frequency sorted and when I want to get to a word I just type the first few letters of the word and some extra letters and my word comes up. This method works best if you try to stay away from frequent letters like "etoanirshu" since they appear in most words.