An unexamined life is not worth living.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Editing Pgn Files without ChessBase or Other Database Program – Syntax Highlighting

Six years ago I already once wrote about pgn file format, and the benefits of using it for storing and sharing your chess data. While working with many pgn files, I want to be able to load them into a text editor, and do various operations on it that can’t be done easily in a chess database, such as SCID, ChessBase, Chess Assistant, etc. Notepad++ , my favourite editor, lets me

  • check spelling
  • translate from one language to another
  • do massive search and replacements across the entire file (or even many files)
  • and many many other things you would normally do in a powerful text editor

The problem with text editors is that normally pgn like any text looks Black/White, and is not very pretty.


Instead I want it to look like this:


Here is the trick: once you loaded the pgn file, make sure to set language to “Pascal”, so that you get the proper syntax highlighting for:

  • game headers
  • different types of braces (for annotations and variations)
  • move numbers


I never programmed (and probably never will) in Pascal, but this nice little similarity between syntaxes between PGN and Pascal comes really handy!

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