A thoughtful little feature in my text editor

PFE Editor Print DialogI needed hard copy of a paragraph from a long text document, so I opened it in my trusty old editor (Programmer’s File Editor by Alan Phillips, a powerful freeware editor I use in lieu of the pitifully rudimentary Windows Notepad). I selected the paragraph and opened the Print dialog, recalling that there was an option to only print the selection. The option was there, a radio button sandwiched between those for All and Lines from ___ to ___ . I moved to click it – and realized it was already selected for me.

This is far from a big deal, but I really liked the thoughtfulness that Mr. Phillips had put into this feature. The editor saw I had selected a piece of text; it stood to reason that I wanted to print that text, and not the full document. Features where the computer tries to read the user’s mind can lead at times to unexpected clashes of will, but this one was all goodness.

And compare it to the behavior, in the same situation, of Microsoft Word: you can print a selection, but if you forget to click the radio button you end up sending 50 pages to the printer. Happened to me many times…

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