What Is Plain Textual content?

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Plain Text Notepad
Vann Vicente

What precisely is “plain textual content?” And what’s the distinction between plain textual content and different varieties of textual content? Learn on to seek out out what plain textual content is and what it’s used for.

Plain Textual content

To place it merely, plain textual content is any textual content that isn’t formatted. It doesn’t take any particular formatting, comparable to various fonts, font sizes, daring font, or italics. It additionally solely comprises normal characters, that are these discovered within the default set of characters that an utility can show. It might probably additionally consult with a doc that solely comprises these unformatted characters.

The place Can You Discover Plain Textual content?

A text document in Notepad.

Plain textual content recordsdata are sometimes made by probably the most fundamental textual content file format, which takes on the “.txt” extension. These recordsdata are sometimes created and edited by Notepad, the textual content editor discovered on each Home windows system, or by one other text editor. Nonetheless, textual content recordsdata could be opened by nearly any doc or textual content editor, together with extra highly effective functions comparable to Notepad++, Wordpad, Microsoft Workplace, or OpenOffice.

One other place the place you’ll find plain textual content is enter kinds in web sites and apps. Many social media web sites, comparable to Twitter and Instagram, solely allow you to put up captions and tweets as plain textual content, though there are some exceptions, comparable to hashtags and emoji. Due to this fact, you can’t add any extra formatting to those components. They’re routinely formatted in keeping with the requirements of the web site or app. Older electronic mail shoppers additionally typically have plain textual content modes, permitting you to ship messages in plain textual content.

Plain Textual content vs. Wealthy Textual content

Microsoft Word's formatting toolbar.

The other of plain textual content is wealthy textual content, which takes on numerous formatting traits that aren’t present in plain textual content. Listed here are the attributes typically present in wealthy textual content, however not in plain textual content:

  • Font Dimension and Headings: How massive or small the textual content is and whether or not it’s a “header” factor that opens a bit or a “paragraph” factor that makes up the physique.
  • Font: Which font it truly is, comparable to Arial, Calibri, or Instances New Roman.
  • Colour: That is the colour of each the textual content itself and a spotlight or background coloration.
  • Textual content Attributes: These are attributes usually used to emphasise or intensify a phrase or sentence, comparable to daring, italics, underline, and strikethrough.
  • Spacing: This refers to how far aside traces are from one another and the way far aside particular person letters are from one another in a phrase.
  • Hyperlinks: Whether or not a set of letters hyperlinks to one thing else, comparable to an internet site URL.

Other than these, doc editors additionally produce other varieties of wealthy textual content components, comparable to indentation, superscripts and subscripts, mathematical formatting, and columns. When any wealthy textual content is transformed into plain textual content, all of those components change into misplaced.

Wealthy textual content is often constructed in two methods. The primary is by utilizing a wealthy doc editor, comparable to Google Docs or Microsoft Workplace. The second is by utilizing one thing referred to as “markup language,” which is a straightforward code used to change textual content with sure attributes, which is then exhibited to the viewer as formatted textual content. Examples of markup languages embody HTML, XML, and Markdown.

RELATED: What Is Markdown and How Do You Use It?

The Advantages of Utilizing Plain Textual content Information

Many individuals decide to make use of plain textual content reasonably than wealthy textual content for many of their enhancing. This observe is very widespread amongst programmers and builders, who code in languages constructed with plain textual content and are used to that atmosphere.

Plain textual content is straightforward, straightforward to learn, and could be learn and despatched to anybody. It additionally has not one of the system or software program compatibility points that include various fonts. These are simply a few of the the explanation why many individuals use textual content recordsdata over extra highly effective functions like Phrase. There’s even a big group of people that use plain textual content for all textual content enhancing, from creating grocery lists to typing out full-length novels.

One other essential use of plain textual content recordsdata is that they kind a lot of the underlying infrastructure behind recordsdata and internet pages. For instance, “.ini” recordsdata used to maintain configurations for Home windows functions are sometimes saved in a plain textual content format. This lets you edit your settings by merely opening them up in Notepad.

Paste as Plain Textual content

One of the distinguished locations the place you’ll seemingly encounter the time period “plain textual content” is within the context of the right-click menu in your internet browser or doc editor, the place you may decide to “Paste as Plain Textual content” no matter is at the moment saved in your clipboard. Due to this fact, once you copy the textual content to a location the place wealthy textual content can seem, comparable to in Google Docs, a put up browser, or a social media web site, it’ll be pasted in with out its formatting.

That is particularly helpful once you’re copying and pasting content from one other web site. In the event you decide to stick it instantly, it’ll tackle the unique format of the web site, together with the font coloration, font measurement, and textual content attributes like daring font or italics. Nonetheless, when pasted as plain textual content, it’ll tackle the formatting of the vacation spot location, whether or not that entails plain textual content, daring font, or font of various colours.

RELATED: 42+ Text-Editing Keyboard Shortcuts That Work Almost Everywhere

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