Simple Diff Tool for Visually Comparing Two Text Documents to Check and Highlight Differences, Ideal for Teachers to Review Projects

Sponsored Links:

Among many attributes that come with a teacher’s job (any teacher) is reviewing the work done by students. Doing this on physical paper traditionally means crossing out mistakes, inserting suggestions and generally leaving notes on the side of the paper.

The digital platform has cleaner solutions, though, which make text reviewing easier. For example, diff tools visually compare two text documents to highlight any differences, such as typos, extra space or lines.

In this scenario, the teacher corrects papers using a common text editor, emails the revised edition to the student which, subsequently, uses a diff application like Perforce P4Merge  to compare the original and revised edition, revealing differences.

Visually compare two text docs to check differences

Perforce P4Merge can be operated from an intuitive interface since it leaves out advanced settings to provide a clear-cut workspace for comparing text. You can get started by indicating the first and second files to check for differences.

Unfortunately, the GUI is unclear concerning the supported filetypes but we’ve noticed that it works with TXT and cannot read DOC or .PDF. RTFs were opened but text was incorrectly displayed. On the bright side, it supports many character encoding modes, line ending types, and comparison methods (e.g. detect line ending and white space differences).

Intuitive diff tool without advanced options

Lines with differences are highlighted so you should be able to quickly spot them in the two side-by-side panes. Alternatively, you can switch to single pane diff layout, as well as open three documents for three-way diff. It’s possible to customize the font, tab and space options, jump to the next or previous diff (useful for very large text), use a common search tool, and jump to line numbers.

Taking everything into account, Perforce P4Merge provides a simple means for visually comparing two differences to spot differences. It can be easily used but doesn’t contain advanced settings for more experienced users. Too bad that it doesn’t have word wrap.

We at AppsForMyPC have tested and used Perforce P4Merge and it worked pretty smoothly 🙂 🙂