TextExpander: Simplify Tasks With %Clipboard

Gordon Meyer, author of the O’Reilly book Smart Home Hacks, offers this tip, based on his experience posting Amazon links on his blog:

Here’s a great tip for bloggers and the like. I use TextExpander to create a handy macro for creating Amazon Affiliate links. It’s much easier than using Amazon’s web interface. First, create a TextExpander snippet that looks like this:

TextExpander shortcut for Amazon

Note that uses the nifty “%clipboard” feature, which will be replaced by the current clipboard contents when it is activated. The rest of the URL can be determined by using Amazon’s “create a product link” in their Affiliate Center. (And that’s the last time you’ll ever need to use it!)

TextExpander shortcut for Amazon

When you’re ready to create a link to an Amazon product:
1. Simply find the product you want to link to on Amazon, then copy the ISBN or ASIN to your clipboard:

2. Then I type my trigger, and link is constructed that includes my Affiliate ID: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/B0001ES9G2/gordonmeyer08-20

That’s it, you’re done! I’m sure there are lots of TextExpander users (myself included) who could take advantage of the %clipboard feature to reduce the time and keystrokes spent on monotonous tasks like this one.