A very basic Auto-Match question (I know it's me!)

I’m sure I’m going to feel like an idiot when someone posts an answer to this.

When I enable the auto-match option in editor preferences, I like when I type one character, like open parenthesis, the system automatically also generated the close parenthesis, and allows me to type the text in between the ( and the ).

But when I finish typing the text I want to be in parenthesis, how do I move on? I find myself using the right arrow key and then a space and then continue typing, which is not actually easier than just manually typing the close parenthesis. Am I missing something? Or is this feature just meant for a use-case different than writing/taking notes and I’m not aware of it?


It is there to make sure you don’t forget to add a closing parenthesis, quote, etc. It is a feature common to text editors used by programmers as missing closure syntax is a relatively common issue. It effectively lightens the cognitive load.

It can be applied to writing in the same way. While it won’t break the writing it just ensures that you don’t miss the closure.

You should be able to overtype it I think, or us the arrow/cursor key navigation as you are doing currently.

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The basic answer is just keep typing. If you type the ), and the next character is a ), the cursor will just move forward.

You might ask, “If that’s the case, is this saving me any time?” The answer is not necessarily, as @sylumer noted, it’s more about accuracy and providing a visual cue that you are in a parenthetical (or quote, etc.).

Personally, I find the most useful aspect of the feature the wrapping, because it’s pretty common in Markdown to come back and select text, then wrap it in [] to make a link, etc. and auto-match allows you to do that more quickly by only typing the opening character with a text selection.

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I also find that it’s useful when I’m working on the built in keyboard on the iPad. For some reason it makes more sense to my brain to switch to the punctuation mode, type the opening, switch out and keep typing, skipping over it when I get to the end. Typing both then skipping back, which was what I did before never seemed as smooth.

Oh, good point. You’re right, that’s helpful. I hate that!