It won't surprise you coders do this all the time and so there are 80 ways
to do this, so your peril is choice not scarcity.

Although there are a ton of tools that will do this for non-coders:

On Windows robocopy is popular.

The truth is though most coders just pick the programming language of their
choice and go for it. The most common is Bash and regex. Bash is built-in
to Linux and Macs and pretty easy to <> get
onto Windows <>. It's an old and ugly language but
it's also the kitchen sink of "I just need to do this quick thing." That
said if you dislike old and ugly languages or unintuitive syntax or command
names, pick a programming language you do like, or one of the tools above.

On Fri, Jan 15, 2016 at 10:56 AM, Amy Schuler <[log in to unmask]>

> Hi,
> I'm looking for a smart bulk file editor, if it exists.  Specifically I'd
> like it to be able to move through a list of PDF files that are published
> research papers, and rename them in this approximate format, based on the
> contents of the file:
> firstauthor_firstfewwordsoftitle_year.pdf
> I know this is probably a crazy dream.  The bulk file editors that I know
> about are more simple.  They can bulk rename files according to a pre-set
> pattern or they just remove/add/re-position bits from the existing file
> string.
> Thanks!
> Amy Schuler
> Cary Institute of Ecosystem Studies
> [log in to unmask]