thinkScript®: Q&A

What is thinkScript®?

thinkScript® is a built-in programming language that gives you the capability of creating your own analysis tools such as studies, strategies, watchlist columns, etc. In thinkScript®, you decide which kind of data to analyze with which methods. Functions present in this programming language are capable of retrieving both market and fiscal historical data and provide you with numerous techniques to process it. You are even able to combine many technical indicators in one by referencing them in your code or just using functions that represent the most popular studies such as simple or exponential moving average.

How do I learn to script?

We suggest you start with a set of tutorials we’ve prepared for you. You can find them here. Each tutorial comes with a quiz so you can check your knowledge.

If you already know how to create a script but are unsure what function or constant to use, you can go to our thinkScript® Reference page. There you can find descriptions of all the thinkScript® building blocks: functions, constants, declarations, operators, and reserved words.

How can I use thinkScript®?

There are several ways you can use thinkScript® in thinkorswim:

  1. Create your own studies. Go to Charts -> Studies -> Edit Studies… -> Create… This will open thinkScript® Editor; more information on thinkScript® studies. Alternatively, you can use thinkScript IDE on the Tools tab.
  2. Create your own strategies. Strategies are technical analysis tools that, in addition to analyzing data, add simulated orders to the chart so you can backtest your strategy. Strategies can be created the same way as studies, however, they must contain the AddOrder function. This function defines what kind of simulated order should be added on what condition. To create a strategy, go to Charts -> Studies -> Edit Studies… -> Strategies tab -> Create… More information on thinkScript® strategies. Alternatively, you can use thinkScript IDE on the Tools tab.
  3. Create your own watchlist columns. Available in watchlists all across the platform, this functionality calculates your custom formulas defined in thinkScript® language. More information on custom quotes.
  4. Create alerts. You can be notified every time a study-based condition is fulfilled. This functionality is available from MarketWatch -> Alerts –> Study Alert. More information on study alerts.
  5. Add conditional orders. You can automatically place or cancel an order when a certain study-based condition is fulfilled, including conditions written in thinkScript®. This functionality is available from Order Entry -> Order Rules -> gear icon. More information on thinkScript® conditional orders.
  6. Create scan queries. You can use thinkScript® in Stock Hacker to find symbols that meet your criteria, including thinkScript®-based conditions. More information on thinkScript® in Stock Hacker.
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