Most of us never think about cleaning text until we find dirty text. Dirty text?
Yeah, text with extra characters that shouldn’t be there (Microsoft Word, I’m looking at you)—uppercase when it should be lower case, excess carriage returns, too many line feeds or spaces or tabs, incorrectly spelled words, and everything else that makes text messy. What you need is a simple, free Mac app that cleans text.
Everyone Gets Dirty Text
All of us get dirty text from time to time. Sometimes it’s in a document. Other times it’s in email (which messes up text more than anything else) messages. Wherever text resides, dirty text (text that needs to be improved) is there, lurking, smirking, making fun of you.
Rejoice, Mac user. Cleaning text is as easy as using CleanHaven, the little Mac app that could and does.
First, let me talk about dirty text and why it needs to be cleaned so you’ll know why you need clean text and why you need to have CleanHaven around (even if you don’t think you have dirty text).
Allow me to define dirty text as text that needs to be fixed, improved, cleaned, modified, replaced. Any document or clipboard of text—Word document, Pages document, email message—can have strange values, wrong text, non-letters or non-numbers, incorrect punctuation, too many tabs, spaces or returns.
CleanHaven gives you a point and click way to clean all those things out of a document or message or page, and replace it with what you really want.
Second, copy and paste text directly into CleanHaven. Choose the text manipulation you want from the pull down menus. Each tab has different settings.
Click the Clean button and text gets cleaned according to your settings. Except, it’s just a trial clean. The Cleaned Results window is a preview of your settings. Adjust the settings accordingly.
CleanHaven will clean, sort, remove duplicates, correct misspellings and a whole lot more. You get the option to view your settings and how they affect the text before committing to a final cleaning.
This neat little app is a good way to check for frequency of word usage, too, and handle more complex Find and Replace requirements. Even better, CleanHaven runs on Macs, Windows PCs, even Linux PCs.
My recommendation is to try CleanHaven on those usually messy email messages (the kind with all kinds of strange characters and weird returns and odd line endings—they’re loaded with dirty text) to get an idea of how it works. There’s also an option to Open a document vs. copy and paste. The CleanHaven video instructions also give you a deeper view into dirty text and how to clean it.
CleanHaven is easy enough to use but requires some thinking. You have to think about what you want to be removed or changed or sorted. For an app that thinks for me, I’d pay more.