Monday, July 8, 2024

A small editor App to automatically format JSON files

I've been very remiss in my postings. Grant proposals and administration consume a huge amount of time. I estimate paperwork now takes up between 4 and 5 months a year of my time. ChatGPT is starting to help with some mundane tasks and hopefully, that will increase over time. Ideally, I’d like to live in a world where all bureaucratic chores are relegated to an AI assistant so we AI humans can focus on more creative activities.

I’m not sure how much you’ve had to work with JSON files, they pop up everywhere and I’ve also ended up using them to store information. The problem I always face is being able to edit them. JSON in its purest form is just a single line of text so that when loaded into your favorite editor you just see one long line of text which isn’t great for editing. Usually, I will paste the text into an online formatter and paste the pretty version of the JSON back into my editor where I can work with it. Yes, I could load the JSON into a specialist editor, but they are even more tedious to use. Yes, I could install a plugin for Notepad++ and try to remember keystrokes to format the JSON or I could figure out how to install yet another plugin in the sublime text and remember yet another keystroke.

I therefore spent probably an hour creating a simple editor that when I load a JSON file it automatically formats the text. I uploaded it to GitHub. More important here is the link to the binaries. Appologies to Mac owners, it ony works on Windows. I don't have a good open source editor component for the Mac platform.