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How Contacts in OS X Mavericks speeds data entry


Over the past week or so I've been doing a lot of maintenance on my OS X contacts, primarily because I had literally hundreds of names and addresses that I no longer needed. At the same time, I realized that there were some addresses missing, so I've queried some friends for their current address info and created some new contacts. I was surprised to find that Contacts does some data parsing to help speed things up when you're entering addresses.

Previously, when entering addresses into OS X I would copy the street address of a location, paste it into the street address field, copy the city name, paste it into its proper location, and so on. It was time-consuming and occasionally the addresses would be truncated because of a mistake in copying. Well, I was surprised to find out that if you copy a full address, Contacts parses the information when you paste it into the address field and separates all of the information into the proper sub-fields.

For example, copying this:

1 Infinite Loop
Cupertino, CA 95014 USA

and pasting it into the address field of a contact card results in the following on the contact card:

Contacts in OS X Mavericks

Each of those fields that makes up the address, including the street address, city, state, zip and country, is now populated with the correct information. Likewise, Contacts also nicely formats phone numbers when pasted into the phone number fields. Take this string of text and numbers -- +13035551212 -- and paste it into the phone number field, and when you press Return on your keyboard, the number is nicely formatted as follows, complete with country code.

Contacts is OS X Mavericks

Frankly, I don't know if this parsing capability was in OS X before Mavericks, but it's made life so much easier for me this week that I thought it merited passing along to TUAW readers. Do you have any other tricks for Contacts that you can pass along to readers? Let us know in the comments.

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