Automation and postprocessing tools for producing technical documentation

Market overview of recommendable automation and post-processing tools, especially in connection with the creation of technical documentation and user assistance.

For information on the indicated price levels , see Price levels.

Macro recording and playback

AutoHotkey

Lets you automate almost any task within almost any Windows application. Can for example be used to auto replace text, to insert special characters with a click of a button, or to call a sequence of commands from menus and dialogs. From the AutoHotkey website you can also download SciTE4AutoHotkey, a free editor for AutoHotkey scripts that provides syntax highlighting and context-sensitive help. PuloversMacroCreator is a desktop application that lets you record simple actions on your computer and then transforms these actions into an AutoHotkey script.

Price level: free (open source)

AutoIt

Alternative to AutoHotkey. Scripts are compatible to some extent.

Price level: free (freeware)

Key Manager

Can remap combinations of keys and mouse buttons. Also can run its own macros.

Price level: low

SikuliX

Implements automation based on screen captures.

Price level: free (open source)

UI.Vision

Visual automation tool, screen scraping tool, and testing tool.

Price level: free (open source)

RoboTask

Price level: low

Jitbit Auto Text

Price level: low

Jitbit Macro Recorder

Price level: low

PTFB Pro

Price level: low

Macro Scheduler

Price level: low

Macro Expert (NEW ENTRY)

Price level: low

Macro Express

Price level: low

Macro Recorder (NEW ENTRY)

Price level: low

PhraseExpress

Price level: low

TextExpander (NEW ENTRY)

Comes with various functions to search for suitable snippets and to use them consistently in teams.

Price level: low

Automation Workshop

Price level: diverse

VisualCron

Price level: medium

Automate

Price level: not published

Find and replace

AKS Text Replacer

Can search and replace text in files of various formats. Supports regular expressions. Includes a convenient batch file making utility. Works with text files and Microsoft Word files.

Price level: low

TextPipe

Available in different versions for simple search and replace operations up to sophisticated data mining.

Price level: low

PowerGREP

One of the most powerful search and replace tools for text files available. Can be run both via a graphical user interface and from the command line.

Price level: low

AJC Grep

Search, replace, and data extraction tool.

Price level: low

Batch Text File Editor, Batch Docs, Batch Word Replace, Batch File Replace

Provide many functions for batch replacing text and formatting in text and Word files.

Price level: low

grepWin

Regular expression search and replace utility for Windows. Can also be run from the command line, thus allowing full automation.

Price level: free (open source)

Aba Search and Replace (NEW ENTRY)

Comes with various features, such as Unicode support, multi-line search and replace, regular expression support (including look around, non-greedy matching) preview before replacement, undo for any replacement, and more.

Price level: low

TextCrawler

Can search and replace across files and can extract, insert and delete text. Supports regular expressions and batch mode. Unicode compatible.

Price level: low

FART

Command line utility for finding and replacing text.

Price level: free (open source)

Swiss File Knife

Among other features also provides a search and replace tool for the command line.

Price level: free (open source)

Rainbow

Provides multi-file find and replace, various conversion options, plus a number of other useful features.

Price level: free (open source)

MegaReplacer for Microsoft Word

Finds and replaces multiple text strings (characters, words, phrases), text formatting, or styles within one or multiple documents.

Price level: low

Perl

Programming language that has a particular strength in handling texts.

Price level: free (open source)

Process automation, conversion, and formatting

Take Command (NEW ENTRY)

interactive GUI for the Windows command line that makes using Windows command prompts easier.

Price level: low

PatternStream

Automates publishing workflows. Information can be acquired directly from any standard relational databases, or from XML, HTML, and other files. The gathered information can then be automatically imported and placed where needed in the final document (FrameMaker, InDesign, HTML, XML, Excel).

Price level: not published

Typefi

Single-source publishing platform that integrates print, online, and mobile production into one automated workflow.

Price level: not published

c-rex.net

Extracts and converts content between various formats for editing, translation, and publishing.

Price level: not published

Miramo

Automatically formats information extracted from databases and other data sources, such as XML data. Uses Adobe FrameMaker.

Price level: high

Pandoc

Universal document converter. Among others, converts between markdown, reStructuredText, textile, HTML, DocBook, LaTeX, MediaWiki markup, and OPML.

Price level: free (open source)

CoreFTP

FTP client that can also be controlled from the command line and thus be used for automated publication processes.

Price level: low

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This page was last updated 01/2023
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