Manage Your Code Like a Pro With Snippets

(Mac only) How often do you find yourself struggling to remember that snippet of code you used from a project a couple months ago? What do you do then? Well, you Google what you’re looking for and pray to the search gods that your answer can be found within a couple of clicks. Luckily, things have changed for the better with Snippets.

Snippets for Mac OS X is ideal for the frequent coder who faces the regular task of retrieving oft-used pieces of code. And, if you’re like me, and weren’t lucky enough to be blessed with incredible memory, the app is the time-saving tool you’ve been looking for.


As a code manager, Snippets allows users to effectively organize their code and, most importantly, make it incredibly easy to reuse it in the future. On its website, its slogan is “Stop Reinventing the Code.” This app excels in this regard as it provides the environment coders need to manage their time efficiently without having the write the same code every time.

When I launched Snippets for the first time, I was pleased to find that the app came pre-stocked with a library of snippets in numerous programming languages such as HTML, CSS, and PHP. Adding snippets to my library couldn’t be any easier. You can label your snippets, write a description, include author information, and other details.

As I mentioned earlier, Snippets makes it easy to organize your code. For example, you can group related snippets and create smart groups akin to Mac smart folders. Snippets also includes a section called “Highlights” which group snippets based on their language.

If you want to insert a snippet from your Snippets library, you can utilize a menu bar icon to search for your snippet and automatically paste it to your window. When you start entering keywords to the search box, Snippets begins to display a list snippets that possibly match what you are looking for. You can quickly preview the snippet simply by hovering your mouse over the name before deciding to paste the code.

Alternatively, you can OPTION-click the Snippets menu icon to navigate through your groups of snippets.

One of the things the developer stressed to me regarding Snippets was the wide-ranging integration with other Mac apps. For example, you can drag and drop TextMate themes into the editor preferences panel to apply new colors.

As I explored the app further, I couldn’t help but notice the numerous apps that interacted seamlessly with Snippets. The contextual menu offers you the ability to edit the currently selected snippet in TextMate or your preferred choice in text editors. In addition, you can instantly mail your snippet and copy it to your clipboard as you work.

It gets better: Scrippets. Scrippets are plugins that can be used to perform custom operations of your selected library. Yea, I know. It was new to me too. Luckily, the developers have an in-depth explanation to appease your academic appetite.

In other words, you can share your snippets on Snipplr, Pastie, and other code-sharing repositories easily on Snippets. Besides sharing code online, there is another Scrippet that lets you add snippets to TextExpander. Very cool, indeed.

Final thoughts

Prior to discovering Snippets, I did not have any system of storing or organizing any of the snippets I use on a regular basis when I do some web design. Like many people, I either Googled aimlessly for my answer or banged my head against my desk until I could conjure up lost memories of code. Thankfully, Snippets arrived. The app makes it incredibly easy to save your code for future use, and thus making me more productive. That was the biggest gain by far. The time I probably would’ve spent agonizing in my own ineptitude is now replaced by a systematic way of efficiently managing a vital source of any coders’ knowledge.

If you’re interested in trying out Snippets, you can download a free 30-day trial or purchase it for $39.95 here.