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Microsoft introduced an AI-powered feature called Advanced Paste on Windows with PowerToys at its Build 2024 conference on Tuesday (May 22). It opens up new options for pasting content from the clipboard in several formats including plain text, markdown, and JSON. Furthermore, those with OpenAI‘s API credits get access to more features such as text summarisation, code generation, and more. It is just one of the AI-powered enhancements that the Mountain View-based tech giant showcased at its developer conference.

According to a Microsoft Learn blog, the Advanced Paste feature is available in PowerToys version 0.81.0 and can be accessed with the Windows Key + Shift + V shortcut. This brings up the Advanced Paste window where users can select between 3 options for pasting from the clipboard – Plain text, JSON, and markdown, all of which can be used with a quick key shortcut.

1. Paste as plain text – It copies and pastes the text from the clipboard without any formatting.

2. Paste as JSON – Using this option updates the text copied from the clipboard to JSON formatting.

3. Paste as markdown – It changes the text copied from the clipboard and replaces it with a markdown-formatted version of the text.

microsoft advanced paste 2 Microsoft Advanced Paste

Copied text can be pasted as JSON using the new Advanced Paste option
Photo Credit: Microsoft Learn

Furthermore, Microsoft introduced a ‘Paste with AI’ option that leverages OpenAI’s AI technology to offer even more advanced paste functions. Users can provide a prompt, following which the text is analysed and modified to match the provided context. To access it, users are required to tie their OpenAI accounts to PowerToys to enable an API key and have enough credits in their accounts. The list of functions include summarising text, translating text, generating code, transforming text, and stylising text.

Accessing the Advanced Paste option can be customised through Settings. Users can toggle the ‘Paste with AI’ option, enable custom format preview, turn on clipboard history, and set customisable keyboard commands for the paste shortcuts. Microsoft says the quality of the text generated with the ‘Paste with AI’ option depends on the “quality of the input provided”. It recommends users provide more context for the AI model to understand the prompt better and respond to requests.

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